Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Finnieston Tunnel Rotundas

I'm sure that a lot of Glaswegians don't know that there are tunnels under the Clyde between Finnieston & Govan, west of the city centre. Three 16 foot diameter tunnels were constructed opening in 1895. Two for traffic and one for pedestrians & a water main. Traffic accessed the tunnel via hydraulic lifts, six in each rotunda building on either bank. There were ferries in this area but the tunnel allowed horse drawn carts to carry a heavier load over the river because they did not have to negotiate the ramp onto the ferry.

The tunnels were not a success and the company running them went bust after a few years. The city corporation ran the tunnels until 1943 when the lifts were removed. The pedestrian tunnel closed in 1980.

The rotundas were eventually renovated. The north one is now restaurants. The south one is currently unused. 
South rotunda

North rotunda (Finnieston crane behind)
North rotunda

Horse drawn traffic in 1897

1 comment:

  1. A friend's father worked on Glasgow's docks in the 1970s/80s and apparently used the tunnels to get across the river to and from Pollockshields without having to travel via the bridges in the city centre. The tunnels were considered fairly unsafe even then.