Today I’ve been to a consultation about the City Road corridor.You can read more here
There are some great ideas around, and it will be interesting to see how many of them come to fruition. The numbers at the meeting were however disappointing when you consider the size of the area in question, which is equivalent to a small town.
One of the most popular ideas is to plant lots of fruit trees along the corridor. I think this will be great, as long as the Council can find the money in the budget to maintain them and protect them from vandals. They will be an excellent source of free food for the community! Many of our cities trees are in a very poor state of health, and we need a massive planting scheme to start to replace the ones that will soon have to be felled.
On traffic many people at the consultation thought that it was no good trying to slow traffic on City Road. I disagree. There have been many accidents on City Road and it is a residential street. I would like to see a blanket 20mph speed limit for the whole area. But if this is unpopular at least the side streets should all be 20mph. I again raised the issue of the traffic lights at the junction of Bernard Street and Duke Street, by the Trades and Labour Club/New Inn. These lights really should include a pedestrian crossing.Pedestrians should not have to risk life and limb every time they cross the road.
The major problem that needs addressing is the lack of useful shops. We have plenty of fast food outlets and takeaways, but there is nowhere to buy an apple or a potato! Hopefully investment in the area may attract new shopkeepers.
New walking routes to connect the various green spaces are to be encouraged, and it will be good to have a new entrance to Deep Pits park, next to the old Travellers pub, which I gather is to become a shop with apartments.
Cosmetic features like signposting, floodlighting etc will improve the area but wont bring regeneration on there own. The key will be to attracting sustainable local businesses that can provide for the needs of the local people.