26th September 2017

Town centre vanity project

Over the years there’s been an awful lot of codswallop been published in the letters column – I should know, I’ve written some of it myself.

Two letters in last week’s paper, however, hit the nail right on the head. Erik Young and Robert Wishart both stated their cases most succinctly with regard to the “improvements” to the town centre.

Any improvements bringing greater road safety are to be commended, however, while the profusion of bollards round the Clydesdale Bank will no doubt be seen as desirable street furniture by the roads department, I see them as an additional hazard for the visually impaired and elderly – and what on earth are all the red arcs painted on the road?

There’s no reference to them in the Highway Code, the only purpose seems to be to distract both drivers and pedestrians. Has some roads engineer been on recreational herbal substances?

The whole thing reeks of a vanity project. It has considerably reduced disabled parking, made no attempt to address the principle problem of the town – short term parking – and diverted public money from other, more worthwhile projects.

How about the Times using the freedom of information act to find out how much this folly has cost us all?

John Waters
1 Andrewstown Terrace,
Lerwick.

7 comments

  1. Gillian Keppie

    I had similar thoughts about the fancy metalwork at the Clydesdale bank, I hope it glows in the dark !! I’m very surprised it passed health and safety !? Also ,in the original plans there was 2 disabled parking places at this spot which have mysteriously disappeared.

    Reply
  2. Michael Garriock

    When you step back and look at all the little ‘highways’ ‘improvements’ that have occurred by stealth in the Lerwick ‘town centre’ over the last forty years, you can only come to one conclusion.

    Virtually all have everything to do with some engineer/arichitect/planner/whatever flicking through their trade publication of choice and zoning in on articles headed ‘Every modern town centre should have……’, making a list of what Lerwick doesn’t have and trying to find someplace to put one.

    Things are certainly different, but they’re no better. Parking is massively reduced unless you pay for it, vision is reduced, accessibility is reduced, obstacles have increased, ease and convenience has been reduced dramatically.

    In 1977 the Esplanade and adjacent street was a rather chaotic well worn but bustling place with numerous buoyant businesses where little harm came to anyone. In 2017 its orderly, ‘pretty’, with all its fancy bits of pavement, paint on the road and pointless little walls, but it’s virtually deserted with only a handful of shops just about getting by. If that’s not cause and effect, we’d be expected to believe it would be worse if left as it was, and I don’t believe that.

    Reply
  3. John Waters

    Michael,
    How right you are! Country buses banished to a left luggage station way out of town instead of near the street where ‘messages’ could be left, modern buildings aggressively out of character with their surroundings, and the latest epic, where disabled parking has been replaced with useless (and probably expensive) tat. What use are four benches situated where the only view is that of drunks having a fag outside the Thule? There’s an old joke about a camel being a horse designed by a committee. There must be plenty of committees in the SIC.

    Reply
  4. Debra Nicolson

    I have found the red arcs distracting. I would be interested to know what purpose they serve other than to waste council money.

    Reply
  5. Barbara Gray

    When will the SIC tell us how much all this mess has cost and whose bright idea it was.

    Reply
  6. Ali Inkster

    Maybe Dave Coupe from the roads department should take folk for a run round the town in his own vehicle and show us all how driving over these “speed cushions” at 20mph will not damage our cars. If he can’t then maybe the planning department can explain why this outrageous increase in traffic emissions was allowed to pass planning permission.

    Reply
  7. kenneth Groat

    There are now 2 disabled spaces marked out at the south side of the Thule Bar on a corner, unfortunately instead of the safe ones which used to exist off the road they are right on the edge of a busy road. Why ? when parked and folding down our rear ramp you are right on the road, it is not safe could this perhaps have been an after thought by someone . What was there before 3 spaces were safe and handy for anyone to use regarding there disabled vehicle now it is certainly not

    Reply

Your Comment

Please note, it is the policy of The Shetland Times to publish comments and letters from named individuals only. Both forename and surname are required.

Comments are moderated. Contributors must observe normal standards of decency and tolerance for the opinions of others.

The views expressed are those of contributors and not of The Shetland Times.

The Shetland Times reserves the right to decline or remove any contribution without notice or stating reason.

Comments are limited to 200 words but please email longer articles or letters to editorial@shetlandtimes.co.uk for consideration and include a daytime telephone number and your address. If emailing information in confidence please put "Not for publication" in both the subject line and at the top of the main message.