Re-asses mistakes which have been made in the past

How many local shopping areas in Bristol have been turned in to 'Ghost Towns' because of changes made to the local roads and lack of car parking provision in compromise to changes?

Focussing on just one area here but use this as an example to compare across the rest of the city with the hope that it's not too late to save local shopping hubs.

Lodge Causeway shopping area in Fishonds was so popular until the early 1990's that apart from a Wednesday afternoon and on Sundays, the area was packed with shoppers, often with three people deep on each side of the road, at a guess 100's of people at peak times using the fruitful array of shops; no more than two of the same kind of shops in the area and it was arguably busier than Fishponds Road shopping area itself.  
Lots of factors could have led to the collapse of Lodge Causeway but the biggest single factor which saw the area deprived within months was the road changes.

The top of Beechen Drive was closed off and Chester Park Road was closed off.  At the same time double yellow lines were painted outside of a complete row of shops and down both sides of Beechen Drive from the closed section to roughly 50 meters down both sides.
It was as if someone wanted to kill Lodge Causeway as a shopping area and they certainly succeeded if this was the case.

Lorries delivering food to Somerfield which was the anchor store in the heart of the shopping area were being damaged because they couldn't access the back of the store which led to the closure of Somerfield and there are possibly 50 or more fewer car parking spaces.  This very quickly led to the decay of what was the fruitful shopping area and teaming with life to a far less attractive hub. Lloyds Bank stayed open as long as it could but following two robberies Lloyds pulled out and today the area has become more so a fast food takeway zone at night.  A few businesses which are wonderful live in hope of a return to what was just 20 years before..

Why the contribution is important

This idea is important because decsions which were made in the past were ill thought out decisions and deprivation has settled on across the city because of mistakes.  Lodge Causeway is partially saved but it will never recover and it's not too late to look at either reopening the roads or finding alternative car parking areas when making decsions which kill communites and pride of place.

by user946047 on December 05, 2013 at 01:09PM

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  • Posted by user412750 December 19, 2013 at 15:13

    This good idea about restoring the life of blighted communities is at the heart of what we need to do all over the country. Local involvement will be very important in the decisions to be made about what changes to make and how they are implemented. But it has been done.

    The Bristol based national charity Sustrans has been successful in some inner Bristol areas in transforming commujnities designed for the car rather than their inhabitants, and there's no reason that the success of the changes made there can't be replicated in other areas of Bristol.

    This is the sort of thinking that is needed to stimulate
    people to start up local businesses, which is also at the heart of living communities.
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