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Peacock sculpture over the Buchanan Street facade of Princes Square

Princes Square is a shopping centre on Buchanan Street in central Glasgow, Scotland. It was first designed and built in the 1840s by John Baird[1] and other architects. It was developed in 1986 to a design by Edinburgh architects, the Hugh Martin Partnership. The new five-storey, 10,450-square-metre (112,500 sq ft) retail centre occupies a pre-existing cobbled Princes square dating from 1841, which was reconfigured by enclosing the entire space below a new clear glass domed and vaulted roof. An expansion was completed in summer 1999, extending the centre into Springfield Court and providing a further 1,860 square metres (20,000 sq ft) of retail area and a new retail frontage to Queen Street.

The original cellars of the existing buildings were excavated to provide additional space. Inside the square, new galleries and stairs give access to the upper storeys. The original sandstone facades were preserved around the modern interior. The centre is adorned with decorative glass, tiling, lighting, timber and metalwork, designed by artists and craftsmen.

The writer Bill Bryson referred to Princes Square as "one of the most intelligent pieces of urban renewal".[2]

The Hugh Martin Partnership earned several design awards for Princes Square, including the RIBA Scottish Regional Award for Architecture (1988), the Edinburgh Architectural Association Centenary Medal (1989), and a Civic Trust Award (1989). In 2016, it was voted Scotland's best building of the last 100 years.[3] The original fabric has been protected as a category B listed building since 1970.[4]


  1. ^ "John Baird I (1798-1859), architect, a biography". Retrieved 6 December 2015.
  2. ^ Bryson, Bill. Notes from a Small Island. Black Swan. p. 339.
  3. ^ "Festival of Architecture Ends on a High Announcing Princes Square as Scotland's Favourite Building". Retrieved 26 March 2017.
  4. ^ Historic Environment Scotland. "34-58 (even nos) Buchanan Street with 7-17 (odd nos) Springfield Court, formerly Prince of Wales Buildings now known as Princes Square  (Category B) (LB32634)". Retrieved 20 March 2019.

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