Whiteinch Cross

Name: Whiteinch Cross

Location: Whiteinch, Glasgow

NGR: NS54188 66860

Classification: Park

Date: 1999

Landscape Architect: Gross.Max

Artist: Adam Barker-Mill

Status: Not listed

Canmore ID: none

Description: Excepts from the publication ‘Five Spaces: New urban landscapes for Glasgow’ confirm Whiteinch Cross was a popular resting place for travellers and somewhere where they could water their horses. Which would have been the inspiration for the parks trough water feature. Possibly also a nod to Luis Barragan. The parklet includes a ten meter high tower by artist Adam Baker-Mill. ‘After consultation with local groups and Whiteinch and Scotstoun Housing Association, the landscape architects Gross.Max felt that Glasgow’s iron and steel building heritage could be reflected in several aspects of the new garden. Consequently, two free standing frames made from Cor-ten steel plates are a visual reminder of the raw materials used in Glasgow’s heavy industrial practice, from shipbuilding to locomotives’.

This pocket park looked brilliant when it first opened. The incorporation of existing mature trees gave the sense that the park had been there for a while and the use of Corten steel meant it would not have looked out of place in Barcelona. I first visited within months of the park’s opening in 1999 and the escofet seats had been vandalised, the water feature turned off, local kids were hanging off the walls, and the base of the tower smothered in graffiti. I recall feeling utterly dejected. A return visit some 21 years later confirmed the sites popularity remains. A group of BMX riders were occupying the space. One rider born in 1999. They were genuinely interested in the parks history, and were interested to learn that the same landscape architects were responsible for the area around the Riverside Museum, which is also popular with BMX riders and skaters. The Corten steel cladding has been painted over, one would assume to conceal graffiti. It looks like the water feature hasn’t functioned since my first visit and now all of the escofet seats have been vandalised. The upper level is surfaced in Clashach sandstone. However, years of dirt and grime have accumulated to conceal the beauty of the natural stone. Text by: Matt Benians.

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