Ta James. It would make sense if Frogmore were to be open about their plans.
The problems with Archbishops (no lease, plus a very valuable 10 acres adds up to a lot of threats) means that I or others in our group have had to engage proactively in Waterloo community fora. My guess is that everyone wants to see a resolution to the mess that is currently the island block. But there were real concerns about the previous plans with huge 'bridges' across the street that would provide dark and discouraging routes south of railway line. Which would exacerbate the sense that the South Bank is an island and that the rest of the area is losing, not gaining, from development.
It is easy to forget that this area is still very poor. My health visitor tells me that 90% of the under fives she sees live in social housing. If you are living on benefits with a weekly family income of £70 a week even ice creams along the South Bank are inaccessible. Plus the new populations in County Hall
and Westminster Bridge Road
are good at writing letters, and will actively oppose anything that does not enhance their lives.
There are always outcomes which provide gain for all parties. As long as developers such as Frogmore are prepared to look constructively. Which does involve them listening to local views and trying their best to minimise negative benefits (such as loss of light to local residents, or St Thomas's having ambulance access to the lying in hospital so that it could be used for medical purposes) and maximise potential benefits, such as improving pedestrian access north and south of the railway line by making the whole thing more inviting.
So frustrating. The Frogmore development will be huge and remove one of London's biggest eyesores. But currently there does not seem to be any mechanism to balance community need and ensure an all-win outcome. Without this the danger is that the current stand off continues, with the 'community' having the power to continue to block things but unable to feed through constructive suggestions that would allow a good compromise to be reached.
If Frogmore were willing to buy me, James, Natalie, and the lady from the tan shop dinner at Champor-Champor
perhaps we could resolve it all. (James and the lady from the tan shop .....worth a thought. Perhaps they are one and the same. And maybe James is Rosie Posie, Christian, David and more.)
PS the thread thing is still not working.