Monday 9 October 2017

There is no community without community spaces

I had a walk around the other side of Mill Hill at the weekend. I live just off Mill Hill Broadway, so I thought I'd have a mosey around Millbrook Park, the huge development on the site of the former Inglis Barracks. This was where the Royal Engineers were based. What struck me was the lack of infrastructure to support The community. In the Broadway, we have all manner of facilities. The scheme is building 2,200 new homes. On the Linden homes website, it lists local amenities (strangely showing an airport on Lawrence St). What is alarming is the total lack of amenities on the site. No shops, pubs, secondary schools, non faith schools, medical centres, restaurants, leisure facilities, or restaurants.

This has two big downsides. Firstly how will a local community ever develop? Without communal activity there can be no sense of belonging. Secondly everyone will need a car to do anything. Compare and contrast with The Watling Estate, built with 4032 homes in the 1930's. It came with shops, schools, youth centres, pubs, restaurants, churches with church halls, a new tube line, football fields. To compliment the main Watling shops, there were smaller parades such as Deanesbrook.

In short, the planners in 1920's understood the concept of community. How on earth can Barnet planners allow such a desert of cultural activity to have been built. The nearest pub, the railway engineer has been allowed to shut. The nearest tube station, Mill Hill East has had its direct service to London decimated. The one school on site is a CofE faith school.

There is a big problem for new residents. The roads are not adopted by the council. This means you pay Council tax, but they don't maintain your road. This is just not fair or equitable.

1 comment:

CalvinCasino said...

Good point Roger.

As I live near to Waitrose in Mill Hill East. I seen new homes being built at Millbrook park. Only park & school but no community? How oddly strange.

At least there is 382 bus that does terminate at Millbrook Park.