Merchant City Sign
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The Merchant City sign marks the area in Glasgow known as the "Merchant City". It was first formed during the early 18th century to house the wealthy merchants who traded tobacco, sugar and tea - and slaves - with North America. This part of the city had wide, straight streets, and open squares with classical villas. In the 19th century as the city grew the area transformed into a squalid, overcrowded, disease-ridden and smelly part of the city when the more affluent residents moved westwards. In the 1950s many of the old houses and warehouses in the area were demolished or allowed to deteriorate. But in the 1980s the city planners decided to revitalize the area and its historic buildings. The term 'Merchant City' was coined during this regeneration to give it an identity and to acknowledge its historic past.