(1770–1813). Scots architect, exponent of a refined Neo-Classicism. He worked in St Petersburg, Russia, in some capacity now unknown (1798), but most of his professional career was spent in Glasgow. Highly regarded in his own lifetime (by Sir Walter Scott (1771–1832), no less, among others), his buildings were distinguished, and included St George's Church, Buchanan Street (1807–8), the Court House, Gaol, and Public Offices, Saltmarket (1809–11—later rebuilt retaining the Greek Doric portico, one of the earliest on any public building in Britain), the handsome interiors of the Signet Library (1812–15—now Lower Signet Library) and Advocates' Library (1812–16—now Upper Signet Library), Parliament Square, Edinburgh, and other refined works. His sensitive Report on the planning of lands between Edinburgh and Leith was published in 1814, and contains analyses of what was later called townscape, as well as the Picturesque aspects of composition. His pupil, W. H. Playfair, later realized a plan influenced by Stark's Report
From A Dictionary of Architecture and Landscape Architecture in Oxford Reference.