Glasgow Caledonian University’s ARC sports centre has been transformed into a key walk-through COVID-19 test centre to serve the local community of Glasgow.

The centre will enable anyone with coronavirus symptoms, including students, GCU staff and members of the public, to get a free swab test that takes less than a minute. The tests can be booked at or by calling 0800 028 2816 as soon as symptoms begin.

The Government-run centre will be operate completely independently of GCU and be managed by clinicians and staffed by experts experienced in running other test centres in Scotland and around the UK. 

There will be no access to the ARC centre from the campus and the usual access to the main campus boulevard will be blocked off.  Prominent signage will direct visitors to the centre and away from the campus.  The Government has provided assurances that the close and segregated management of the Centre will mean there is no increased risk to staff and students as a result of the facility being located in a university property. The centre’s site security will operate 24hrs a day. 

GCU’s support in providing the site is completely in keeping with its unique mission as the University for the Common Good and is a really important and vital way we can rise to the challenge our nation, city and community face.

Professor Pamela Gillies CBE, FRSE, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of Glasgow Caledonian University, said: “GCU is dedicated to serving the Common Good and making our sports facility available for this vital walk-through test centre is an important way we can help our local community, our staff and students, and support the country’s emergency response.

“It adds to other ways GCU has been responding to the pandemic, including our nursing and paramedic students joining the frontline, providing PPE and other essential equipment to the NHS, undertaking key research on the social impact of the lockdown and our academic staff advising on policy development.

“I have no doubt this test centre will be of great benefit in the weeks and months ahead and we are happy to have had the Government’s assurances that the close and segregated management of the test centre will mean there is no increased risk to our staff and students.”

All those attending the test centre will be provided with rules to minimise the risk to themselves and others, including avoiding contact with others whilst walking to and from the centre, not using public transport, wearing a face covering and maintaining clear social distancing. 

The layouts of the walk-in testing sites have also been carefully designed to ensure people can move around them safely and prevent the spread of the virus.