2 May 2009

Planning Kingston's future

I do not often have good things to say about Kingston Council so it is nice to be able to do so. The Council is producing the next set of planning strategy documents (called Local Development Frameworks) that will help to shape the physical environment in Kingston upon Thames for the next decade plus and they are consulting with residents on this.

I attended one of the consultations this week in our local village hall - the last time that I was there was to take one of the boys to playgroup so that must have been about fifteen years ago!

Overall I felt that there is not much seriously wrong in Kingston but significant improvements could be made in all areas.

The biggest problem area is transport where the traffic routes through Kingston are well connected and flow nicely but this is at the expense of the cycle and pedestrian routes which are broken by the major roads. For example, Kingston Station is on a traffic island so commuters and shoppers have to cross several lanes of traffic to get to/from it.

Similarly the parks are pleasant and much appreciated but all need a bit of Tender Loving Care to first protect and then enhance them.

Another key factor is the need to ensure that small shops and workshops are protected from the pressure to convert to housing. Communities need a mix of housing, shopping and somewhere to work. Not only does this keep the place alive during the day but it also reduces the need for people to travel.

Kingston Council should be congratulated for consulting like this but the proof of the pudding will be in the eating, i.e. the documents that are produced as a result and the impact these have on the town.

1 comment:

  1. Sounds positive. I remember the station; used to be bad even before the traffic island!

    I tried to comment on your photo blog, but could not find a way. Strange? Just wanted to say that the elephant picture was superb. Loved it!

    ReplyDelete

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