WORK has started on demolishing a historic building in Glasgow to make way for a controversial student development.
Part of the former Scottish Ballet headquarters in West Princes Street will be knocked down so that developers can build 103 studio rooms for students.
Glasgow-based Noah City Developments was given the green light by councillors in May to convert the site, which includes a historic army drill hall at the rear of the site dating back to 1912.
It sold the site on to CCG Scotland soon after planning permission was given.
News of the latest new batch of student flats, comes after the Evening Times revealed the amount of student accommodation in the city centre and West End could almost double over the next few years, taking the total up to more than 3500.
A total of 1816 residencies are proposed, with permission for hundreds having already been granted.
But residents living near to the sites have warned the mass of student accommodation is putting off families moving into the area and eroding community spirit.
David Sillers, a part-time lecturer who lives right next door to the former home of Scottish Ballet, said he was concerned the West Princes Street Development was eroding a piece a history. He said: "They haven't started demolishing the back of the old ballet building yet but I think they should be saving it.
"The military drill hall was built before the surrounding tennements and is of major architectural interest.
"They could have turned it into a military museum because we don't really have anything like that in Glasgow."
The red sandstone building will be altered externally and converted to student rooms.
Two four-storey accommodation blocks will be built at the rear. Contractors are stripping out the building in preparation for the demolition work which is due to begin after the Glasgow Fair in July.
Prior to planning permission objectors had raised concerns about the height of the property, increased noise, the appearance and wildlife.
Mr Sillers added: "With areas of woodland arround the site the future of the nesting bird population is of concern.
"We've had an amazing population of not just sparrows but goldfinches, wrens, blue tits, coal tits and lots more."
The building has been vacant for three years after the Scottish Ballet School moved to a new home at the Tramway.
Derek Manson-Smith, 68, of Woodlands and Park Community Council, added: "It is a lovely building and it will be a shame to see it go but it has been empty for a few years."
Darren McCann, partnership and innovation manager with CCG Scotland, said he hoped to turn the community around.
He said: "We have Elder and Canon Architects on board so the finished building is going to look really good.
"We've been working with the community to show them the plans and ask for feedback. Once they all see what we're doing they'll see we're planning to make a difference."