Mick F wrote:
Birmingham has more canals than Venice.
Bruges makes a point of tourism on the canals, like Venice does.
............. just thought I'd chuck that into the mix.
If you know Birmingham centre you will also know that its mosty pedestrianised in any case.
What they are talking about is closing the underpasses that go under
all this lot - so through traffic will have to go around the inner ring road - which is already full, and will be busier later this year when the pollution charge comes in. Shame about those who live alongside it who will have theier pollution and danger levels increased.
Unhappily - for those who live or work there - the areas concerned also include areas of social and city centre living homes, student accomodation (note the need to "deliver" students with thier bags and baggage to the accomodation), all the theatres and thier associated car parks, inclidng theatres that put on amateur productions (no, I would not want my daughter to have to find her way home late at night after appearing in a show), hospitals etc. I think one of the HS2 terminals might be in the middle of this lot as well. Did I mention the Children's Hospital?
Those that live in the zone have a period of grace in which to replace thier vehicles - laughable because these are not wealthy people and have no hope of raising the money to do so.
And nowhere have I found in the proposals any park-and-ride facilities especially late at night for those wishing to travel into, rather than through, the town centre.
Bruges has underground car parks surrounding the town centre, you walk up out of the car park and into the town - which isn't very big, having walked across it a number of times it is smaller than the area bounded by the inner ring road. Not a good comparison at all, and I wouldn't mind betting they put the alternatives in before
shutting off the streets. In fact from that point of view birmingham is currently very much like this now, in that the pedestrianised centre of things is surrounded by car parks - which will become marooned!
Bristol has P&R (which I use when I go there) but it shuts down around 9pm or so.
Shrewsbury's P & R finishes around 6 or 7pm, and if you're late you might find your car locked in with a hefty release fee as I recollect - so having worked late, you have to pay for a taxi to get you there then pay a hefty fine. Hardly an encouragement.
All I'm saying is - the whole thing smacks of money raising and knee-jerk politics rather than a proper effort to deal with the problem - I would think differently if the infrastructure was put in place before
the bans/charges rather than afterwards - or not at all.
Brompton, Condor Heritage, creaky joints and thinning white (formerly grey) hair
""You know you're getting old when it's easier to ride a bike than to get on and off it" - quote from observant jogger !