Wednesday 19 January 2011

Douglas Way redevelopment

Construction has started - on schedule! station contractors take note! - on the redevelopment of Douglas Way and the market square as the final part of the council's North Lewisham Links work, which includes Margaret McMillan Park, Fordham Park and the New Cross Underpass.

As a market customer and local resident I welcome the improvements, although I know that not all of the proposals have gone down well with market traders. Plans to change the layout of the stalls on the entrance from Deptford High Street, putting them back to back rather than face to face, attracted criticism from stall holders, and are also subject of debate in our household. Personally I find the narrow passage between the stalls quite annoying and restrictive - it only takes one buggy or mobility scooter to cause a blockage and the extent to which some stall holders spread their wares across this route makes the situation worse.

Yes it's possible to nip down behind the stalls if you don't have a lot of shopping but it's a very narrow thoroughfare and difficult to pass if someone comes the other way. With the stalls back to back, the space for pedestrians would be expanded and the access to the shops would also be improved.

The geezer is with the stallholders, he acknowledges that they will miss the banter and are perhaps worried about missing out on trade as pedestrians are forced to choose one route or another.

BDP's report on the public consultation process (woefully short and not very well publicised it has to be said) is published on the Lewisham Council page I've linked to above. The comments from stallholders have been acknowledged in the notes, but the response notes that no final decision has been made. The renderings show the stalls back to back:

The report puts it this way:
Market Stall Layout
Market stalls will not be placed directly against adjacent walls for ease of access and to reduce the potential for noise. It is proposed to stop people walking behind stalls between the stalls and the wall, to reduce noise and activity near adjacent properties. Market stalls will also be arranged to promote trading, not to impede pedestrian movement and to make market operations safer and easier.

It adds: The consultation process now continues and all traders are being approached regarding the new layout to Douglas way and the Giffin Square.

Here are a few of the renderings that are on the banners hanging up around the construction site along with the proclamation 'Deptford is changing'. As we examined the banners on the way past last night we did have to giggle a little at the fact that the changes seem to involve a dramatic impact on the racial diversity of our local population. The work is due for completion in April.


Rocklands ArtBeat said...

hilarious posters, but any improvents for the community appreciated.

cheers x

Sue said...

Thanks for this Dame. I wanted to post a paeon to the PERGOLA.

I always called it the gazebo. I'm referring to the metal street furniture that until last week graced the middle of Giffin Square. So sad to see it go, but so sad it was when it was there. It was always a silly idea, but could have worked if the council had bothered to maintain it. From day one the trees and shrubs planted in its pillar beds were doomed to fail. Nothing ever grew on it successfully, though no doubt the original plans probably showed a flourishing grape vine or flowering jasmine etc.

Its demise is a warning of what may happen to the new plans. Any improvements are worth nothing if they are never maintained.

Also, the market traders are still mourning the loss of decent inexpensive parking...

And, M McN, watch out for betting shop number nine...

john said...

So the Flour Station will have a stall? Regularly? Dream on Deptford residents, dream on ...

Mb said...

I do like Depford Market, makes me feel down with the proletariat.

Do you think architects have to buy a special bundle for their design software? An " East London afro caribean pedestrians & christian music and book vendors" package would be useful.