Monday, September 03, 2007

Hengrove Park Regeneration Project: how green will the planning/development process be from now?

Today I received an A5 envelope in the post addressed to The Occupier (very likely along with many others in South Bristol). It contained an A4 full colour, 8 page brochure detailing the Hengrove Park Regeneration Project, ( 'a joint public and private sector initiative to redevelop a large former airfield' (actually much, much more like a park for many years, thus Hengrove Park [!], if you ask locals and look at the glossy picture at the top of the brochure). I'm particularly interested in how the development will be 'Built to meet the highest level of design and sustainability standards'. Bristol City Council Leader Helen Holland says the development is '...potentially the jewel in the crown for South Bristol...'.

Planning permission has already been given for redevelopment. The brochure outlines the plans for a Healthplex with pool, leisure facilities and all sorts, Hospital, Skills Academy, Computershare HQ and more...(note: house building is briefly mentioned only) and invites peoples views. I will certainly be sharing my views, not least because of my involvement in trying to save Jubilee Pool from closure (see numerous posts on this blog), which is interlinked with the Hengrove development. In fact Lib Dem Councillor Simon Cook (then 'in charge') responded as shown in bold below to my campaign to save a locally available, quality of life enhancing facility (whose closure in 2010/11, I'd been told, is due to the pool at Hengrove Park opening). Extract from blog entry of March 19:

In a pretty desperate attempt to give the proposed Hengrove Leisure Centre, which will be built on open, green space by the way, a greener gloss, [closing my local pool also results in raised carbon emissions from additional travel impacts] he says, rather vaguely, 'We will also try to build in some sustainable technology - maybe having some solar panels on the top, or a wind turbine'. I get the distinct impression from his vagueness that these features have not so far been integral to any plans, though I will track his progress towards doing these things with some interest.

Anyhow, whilst its no longer Cllr Cook I will be tracking I will still be most interested to see how integral to the regeneration process and designs sustainability will be from now. All I could do today was send the email below (watch this space for more on this issue):

Please could you inform me whenever the Hengrove Park website ( is updated - just visited it to find it has little on it as yet!

What I'm particularly interested in is any info relating to 'the highest level of design and sustainability standards' referred to in the (not very environmentally friendly) glossy brochure I received in the post today.

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