Sunday, January 11, 2009

Bristol green spaces flogging delay

The Bristol Evening Post website today reports that,

'Plans to sell off 90 acres of parkland in Bristol will be delayed because the recession has seen land values plummet.

Bristol City Council could hold off for several years until land values rise again before pushing through its plan to sell parcels of green space.

A report to the council's Quality of Life Scrutiny Committee meeting on Monday says the recession would have an impact on the 'rate of progress' of the plan.'

Any delay should be used to reassess the policy of selling off green land. Its not right to have a kind of 'land sale target'. Other ways of funding improvements to parks must be more fully investigated.

Green spaces are one of the most popular and desirable features of the city - and we certainly need them if we are going to build sustainability and enhance the quality of our lives. This city is supposed to have green capital ambitions after all!

Worryingly there is growing evidence that Bristol City Council is not fairly and uniformly applying its green spaces policy process of establishing Area Green Space Plans through consultation in the same way across all wards in Bristol.

The meetings that were called to deal with the Neighbourhood Partnership area involving Knowle, Filwood and Windmill Hill excluded discussing Filwood. This means that Filwood will be handled separately and with very considerable pressure on it for housing development - I'm told that consultants not present at the other meetings will be present at meetings about Filwood for instance.

On the Bristol to Bath Railway Path the council have a sham consultation on a land sale loaded with leading questions instead of bringing forward the Area Green Space Plan process for the location.

Filwood Park was sold off within hours of the adoption of the new policy on green spaces, The Parks and Green Spaces Strategy - outside the spirit of the policy entirely.

1 comment:

  1. You've brightened up my day with this, Glenn. Every cloud sure has the proverbial.

    "Any delay should be used to reassess the policy of selling off green land."

    Too right. BCC need to reassess this Squarepeg cyclepath sell-off too. Surely they can't have agreed a price already as well (???)

    Still, at least the CONsultants are reaping rich rewards off the taxpayer for all this, even if no-one else is benefiting. It's good for the GDP, just like mugging and car accidents.


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