Twickenham Riverside Park… not Car Park?

El Brute’s “New Heart for Twickenham” project continues to generate plenty of debate. Not all of it supportive. The designs, the “up to 40” flats, the changes in the scheme, the sheer scale of it, the choice of architect, the disappearing town square (where did it go?). We could go on. We often do. But since our last item on the Great Twickenham Riverside Debate the question of car parking has perhaps been the one that has generated the most agitation. Just bloody well check the hashtag #twickenhamriverside on Twitter if you don’t believe us!  See! It’s a veritable ‘park not car park’ thing.  The deadline for comments on the latest designs is midnight on 11th July. If you’ve not yet had your say, do it now!

 

 

More cars please we’re British!

It’s hard to accept that the current arrangement of having Twickenham Embankment as a giant car park is the best use of this prime riverside space. Yes we 100% agree that Eel Pie Islanders and other locals need somewhere to park but can it really be the case that what we have now represents the very best solution to this conundrum?  It’s a large site and a bit of creativity from those more expert than us ought to be able to work something out. Let’s get the experts in! Use the service road, use parking spaces under the new build, redevelop the whole site with undergound parking? Why not?  Richmond has a car free riverside. Why can’t Twickenham? (Still needs space for a certain ice cream van, obvs.)

Richmond Riverside… with ice cream van and not much else

What we have at the moment is a tale of two towns but it’s not impossible for Twickenham to have a riverside park instead of a riverside car park. Even the Terry’s original ideas for the riverside featuring the giant “Rome in a day” amphitheatre thing had a car-free riverfront.  Nice one Tezza.  Or should that be Tezzas?

 

Terry’s folly… but with a riverside park

In fact, early comms from Richmond Council on the subject recognised the ambition for moving cars away from the river frontage.  But they’ve crept back in. The current designs effectively leave things as they are whilst adding further spaces under the podium for residents of the new  building. Hmm.

Twickenham Riverside Parking

Embankment Car Park

RAG, the Riverside Action Group, has done some great work highlighting issues with the designs and campaigning for a better scheme. However, even RAG is now advising respondents to the latest LBRuT survey to say they ‘agree’ on Question 4 about the parking proposals. On this point we disagree. Here are twickerati we want to see a creative solution that works for all. Better still we’d like the plan to be a ‘whole site solution’ incorporating the Diamond Jubilee Gardens, Water Lane, Wharf Lane and the service road. Hell, why not chuck King Street into the mix too? Difficult, yes, but not totally impossible.

One person who’s taken the broader view is local architect Deon Lombard. In his idea, the whole plot gets a total makeover. Where’s the parking you ask? It’s all underneath the buildings and the raised town square area leaving the river front free for a park.  It can be done.

 

Deon Lombard’s idea for Twickenham Riverside

 

We’re not championing any particular scheme but it’s worth a look at Deon’s note to residents on taking a broader view. We think El Brute should be doing this too.

Deon Lombard’s note to residents

 

We even ran a quick parking poll on Twitter and the result from our small sample is clear cut. An alternative solution is what’s needed.

 

There are only a few hours left to comment. It’s time to feedback to the Council by 23.59 on 11th July and disagree with the current parking arrangements and provide broader feedback on the scheme. The survey questions are very narrow so you’ll need to add your own context where you can.

This is a once in a generation opportunity. It can and should be done better.

LINKS & INFO:

* LBRuT Twickenham Rediscovered – feedback to  LBRuT via this link. Deadline is 23.59 on Tue 11th July.
Two remaining drop-in exhibitions are being held on the following dates at Clarendon Hall, York House:
Thur 6th July, 5 to 8pm
Sat 8th July, 10am to 5pm

* Riverside Action Group

 

55 Comments

Filed under Local Issues & News, Twickenham Action Plan

55 responses to “Twickenham Riverside Park… not Car Park?

  1. twickerman

    Dear ex-TR and all,

    I’m struggling with White Knight’s negativity.
    Many of the issues raised are common to LBRUTs scheme, such as the underground car park and sub-station.

    For instance, there are 59 parking spaces on the Embankment and LBRuT have submitted an EIA for 55 spaces, so we’re in the same ball park in terms of numbers.

    Making Water Lane two way at the bottom is straightforward as only a handful of car parking spaces would need to be removed to achieve it.

    Rather than picking on active King Street stores to create the link with DJG, there’s the vacant ex-Scope store. I’m sure a deal can be done to replace this with a store in the new development.

    I strongly believe the other remaining issues can be overcome with a little imagination and negotiation.

    If we don’t think big, like Deon and Martin Habell have, and take an integrated approach to the whole site, we’ll just end up with a sub-standard bodge job like each of the Terry proposals, which have the undesirable hallmark of ‘design by committee’ all over them.

    The very least we can expect LBRuT to do is relocate all the damn cars from the riverside to create a much improved and extended Diamond Jubilee Gardens.

    And before the naysayers claim this isn’t possible I suggest they take a look at the original LBRuT consultation (entitled: A New Town Square for Twickenham) which featured a pedestrianised Embankment, underground parking and the long lost Town Square.
    See link at bottom.

    I sense that things are coming around full circle, and despite a considerable amount of time and money having been wasted by LBRuT, it’s time for them to revert back to their original principles, just with a more integrated approach to the site.

    After all, as you’ll see from their consultation document, they recognised that residents primarily wanted, and still want, a Town Square and to move cars away from the Riverside.

    https://consultation.richmond.gov.uk/environment/town-square/

    • Voxpop

      “The long lost Town Square. . . . I sense that things are coming around full circle,” said twickerman.

      Ah, that’s the Council’s “iterative approach”, d’you know. The Council’s Officers and elected members keep going round in circles, the costs spiral and no one knows where we will end up.

      That’s right, no one knows where it’s going, not even the architect. Francis Terry claimed “There were no real restrictions in the brief.” That’s the brief published by the Council over two years ago. So of course the Council, their chosen architect and everyone have all been going round in circles ever since!

      Yes, you are right, twickerman. A town square was the established aim for launching this scheme, the number one objective according to the council’s brief and the central focus of the original consultation. Councillor Fleming said that over 49% of people who took part at that time said they wanted a market place / town square for Twickenham.

      Now the council have ditched the town square that we wanted all along. Instead they have put in its place more space for shops (more shops!) and posh, riverside apartments. That’s not what regeneration is about.

      Maybe we’ve misunderstood. It’s really all just a vanity project for the Council.

      “Fleming’s Folly” as it has been called.

  2. whiteknight

    Deon’s scheme looks exciting at first glance, but closer inspection shows that it is fatally flawed.
    It assumes that we start with a clean sheet. Consider the complex legal aspects of unpicking the two leases existing on the site – for the Diamond Jubilee Gardens and for the electricity sub-station. Then the expense of achieving the proposed break-through from King Street (suggested by John Thurston in 2009), that would also involve the uncertainty of buying the freehold of for example no. 13 (Holland & Barrett) or 15 (Patisserie Valerie) from Evergreen Retail Investments and any attached leases and sub-leases. Add the millions required to excavate for and construct a car park large enough to take all cars off The Embankment, and think of the public outcry at the disappearance of the Diamond Jubilee Gardens, children’s playground and the mature hornbeams along the Service Road. Making Water Lane two-way, that would be necessary if all traffic is banned from The Embankment, might also well prove problematical.
    How would all this be paid for?
    It was Otto von Bismarck who remarked that politics is the art of the possible; so, too, perhaps is planning

    • My first challenge is to reply using Twickerati permitted language. Having defecated all over a positive suggestion, you make no alternative recommendation of your own.
      Indeed it probably does need a clean sheet/blank canvas etc because there is no point in spending millions of a project that only 2 sets of people will be happy with – namely LBRUT aka Fearsome Fleming plus the 40 flat owners with glorious views of OUR riverside.

    • anonymouse

      Twicksblog,
      There’s always one (and this time it’s not Demokrat)!
      BTW, a certain Essex boy, namely Francis Terry, will also be very happy with the £100,000s that LBRUT are stuffing his new company’s coffers with.

    • illiad

      yeah yeah, very nice, but something better than ‘on the back of a cigarette packet’ is needed… 😦

      DO NOTE that the ‘perfectly drafted, entry on richmond.gov.uk’ has not got that far, so what hope does Deon have???

      I do hope you have been into Clarendon hall, instead of just here…. 😛

    • anonymouse

      illiad
      I can’t wait to see your ‘professionally drawn’ scheme.

    • illiad

      anonymouse: so this is what it has come to, childish playground bickering, and NO thought about the GROWN UP plan???

    • anonymouse

      Illiad,
      Please share the ‘grown up plan’ ???

    • whiteknight

      Many thanks to Alexis for his comments.
      Perhaps the eight people who gave my contribution a thumbs down could explain how to get round the flaws I suggested? Deon’s own comments would be very welcome, too, of course. I would be delighted to hear from all.
      Criticism and opposition is what Twickerati is all about, but surely it is possible to keep comments polite, however strongly one might feel.

    • OMG, anonymouse… even a 1 year old would know!!!

    • Riverside Voter

      whitenight Planning is indeed the art of the possible which is precisely why as Ben Makins has so articulately laid out down the thread, along with others throughout all these threads on the RIverside proposal over the last couple of years, the Council should have followed the standard procedures any business would follow in conceiving and planning a new project to ensure it is sound, and has the best possible chances of being realised cost effectively. Firstly they should have started out with agreeing the aims and perimeters with all the major stakeholders, including the community, then they could have generated the options for achieving those aims along with assessment of the costs and feasibility. Deon’s plan is an option, still obviously not yet tested in those terms but it does have the virtue of meeting the community’s aims. I have no idea whether it is feasible financially or logistically as I am not an architect but there are good ideas there worthy of further investigation / development.

      The Council’s plan is a(nother) vanity project driven by them wanting to relive the glories of the RIverside project and as such is an option which is totally inappropriate for the site and context as has been shown by the feedback from repeated expensive consultations with the community. It is also quite possibly, because of the absence of any sound business planning, not feasible financially. The scale of their proposed project increases the risk that millions will be lost or that a developer will seek to increase the density and water down the quality of the development in the face of escalating costs. And all for something the community does not want in the first place.

      There are other options, and removing the cars from the RIverside is one of the more easily achieved possibilities.

  3. Ex-Twickenham Resident

    Certainly a car free Twick riverside would be rather pleasant as would turning the area over to green space.

    If cars are to be allowed to park on the Twick riverside for whatever reason, would it be a less bitter pill to swallow if it were stipulated that only electric or hybrids could utilise the parking?

    I am sensing a green renaissance at the moment with Volvo’s recent announcement, Tesla’s imminent electric car for the people and paradoxically Trump pulling out of the Paris climate agreement.

    Perhaps the overriding theme for any potential Twick riverside development is the tacit agreement that all plans should be environmentally sound with the aim of being innovative and inspirational. After all, in 2010 the Tories made great claims of being the greenest govt. ever.

    • anonymouse

      A green underground car park and a green (car free) riverside park would be best.

    • Alexis

      I must ask Twicksblog a simple question.
      What is so wrong with pointing out the obvious flaws in a proposed scheme without coming up with an alternative proposal as whiteknight has done?
      Isn’t that why we bother to discuss and debate issues on this forum rather than allowing the political warriors to bludgeon us into submission?
      Earlier, on this topic; Mr Makins has taken the trouble to do some serious research and post a number of very well thought out views on the current schemes – he clearly knows his game and understands the difficulties
      If this is the same Ben Makins who organised the first extremely successful Radnor Gardens music festival, he’d have my full support if the Council were to offer him a consultancy contract.
      Just a thought Twicksblog, just a thought.
      By the way, what was your second challenge?
      Alexis

    • Benjamin Makins

      Thank you Alexis. Yes, indeed I did, 2002, 15 years ago! Good memory. I wrote about my vision for Twickenham, including this site, in the programme for the 2003 Music Day and said, projecting just 4 years ahead as if writing in 2007, “What unlocked the potential (to make Twickenham London’s premiere arts and entertainment venue) was an inspired approach to The Tate and the fast track opening in 2005 of The Tate Thames on the old swimming pool site. Comparable to The Tate, St Ives, and dedicated to art inspired by the British landscape and the Turner inheritance, it attracted 100,000 visitors in 6 months. The low tech development, reflecting the boat yards of Eel Pie, won great acclaim. The open river terrace is now used for al-fresco dining, promenading and impromptu art exhibitions on the riverside railings. “The Awnings” (concert hall) which recalls the sails of a Thames barge leaning into a strong easterly, hosts an eclectic range of live music, adding a distinctly cosmopolitan flavour, The area has been tagged “The North Bank”. ”

      There’s more and maybe I should post that too. Interesting to see what opportunities have already been missed. Maybe these things have to take a little more time, or wait for their time to come. It’s not too late to rescue this one. I did in fact follow up on my “reverie” and got in touch with The Tate and found that their then Director of Projects and Developments actually lived in Twickenham and was very interested. For personal reasons I couldn’t take this forward but attempted to make an introduction to the Council (then LD controlled), but it didn’t get picked up. That ball was dropped. Coincidentally I was back at The Tate, St Ives, last week, and it’s about to open its 2nd phase. It’s incredible the impact it’s had on that town. I confirmed that the site it’s built on is no larger than the whole site we have here, or at The Guggenheim, Bilboa, the new National Library, Copenhagen, or, I believe, the Sydney Opera House, all built on formerly disused waterside sties. And this is the best we can do?!!! Come on. Imagination please!

      I’d be very happy to consult with the Council, no fee or contract required, they just have to show themselves willing to listen. Cllrs, True and Fleming and the Cabinet Members have all received emails from me suggesting that a more strategic, facilitative and developmental approach is required and that the Council has powers and duties it should use to enable a solution that realises the full potential here. Let’s just say, I was politely “fobbed off”. It needs to address this from the angle, “What is Twickenham for?”, not just, “what should we plonk on the riverside?”.

      So, suggestions please. How do we get this turned around and a greater number than read Twickerati engaged with this, keeping in mind that local elections are not far over the horizon. Will the LD’s pick this up, other “progressive” parties, even elements within the current ruling party who might have an independent spirit and spine and be concerned about where the current approach might be leading them. New leader, new approach maybe? Where are the “great and good” who perhaps have more influence than me. Time to stand up, speak out and get this back on the right track.

  4. twickerman

    Ben,
    I agree that this consultation is limited and selective. We’re not even asked for our views on the Dickensian guildhally King Street viee or the view from the Embankment (over the parked cars).

    But it is better than the last farcical consultation in which we were asked to chose a preference between three shite schemes.

    This time we have an opportunity to Disagree with many aspects of the flawed proposal and comment why.
    We are also asked if we agree with the plans to continue with 73 riverside car park spaces, plus another 55 spaces under the podium (for new flats only!).
    And finally we are asked for our general comments (relocate parking from riverside, riverside park, town square, lido etc).

    Let’s hope our comments aren’t swept under the carpet, like last time (and released very quietly 2 months after the preference results).

  5. Benjamin Makins

    So, another round of faux consultation. (See my comment to Twickerman). For fear of sounding like a broken record, I’d repeat; this is so predictable. All we are reaping is the outcome of a flawed process and we are going backwards.

    I understand that the position of RAG, Eel Pie Islanders and even DJG trustees (though I’m not clear if publicly as a body) is now united against these “new” proposals.

    The issue for these groups now is whether or not to continue to collaborate with the process. It doesn’t seem to be getting us very far. One is of course reminded of Einstein’s observation, roughly, that to keep on doing the same thing and expect different outcomes is insanity..

    Clearly the Council’s flawed process continues to fail to get a good outcome.

    So, I’d say that the only credible and logical position is; revise the process, start again, but with the information gained through last year’s consultation exercise. No, this isn’t back to square one. It won’t be a waste of time. The waste of time and paucity of good outcomes is directly related to the Council’s inflexibility and high handedness in continuing to try to push through a solution based on false premises and short cuts in procedure.

    I’d also note that the game has changed with the sale of the King Street site and that it would be madness to go ahead without a full whole site (including King Street) brief and then a scheme arrived at through proper process, including the new King Street owners as partners. This also allows the best chance of securing planning gains and revenue for the project from the commercial partner who, through enlightened self interest, can maximally add value to the site if it’s properly developed hand in hand with the community.

    This has to be conducted within the context of a proper financial and business plan with total clarity about site ownership once developed, requirements for repayment of the £6m capital for the purchase of the site by the Council, and realistic revenue targets. We’ve never had these and they are fundamental to any development plan, defining the extent of development, the balance between commercial and residential, private and public open access and community use.

    The brief should include the non-negotiables of; whole site, town square, opened vistas to the river, significant space for public benefit, remove riverside parking (but retain undercover /screened parking and delivery for EP islanders within reasonable distance) etc., as identified by the public consultation process undertaken by RAG back in 2015. The other non-negotiable was removal of the Terry Partnership. That’s a given if the process is run properly. They’d have a chance to be considered for a re-bid, but may prefer to be let off the hook!

    In the meantime, with elections looming in 2018, which the ruling party might begin to think is not the best time to be having an on-going planning appeal or the diggers starting to work in earshot of some of the most marginal wards in the Borough, I think it might be time to propose a moratorium.

    The whole site should be cleared, which it will have to be anyway, and made into an interim, low tech open space for the enjoyment and facility of the people of Twickenham, in the same way as Diamond Jubilee Gardens was imaginatively but supposedly temporarily re-modelled, but not, for goodness sake, tangled up in some crazy 125 year trust arrangement!!

    A proper resident’s / stakeholders’ trust should be set up by democratic process, including elected council representatives, to oversee and run the space for the next 2 years to allow time for proper due process and development of a good scheme we can all get behind. DJG Trust to be either disbanded or members subsumed into it.

    This Trust should also oversee the redevelopment process as a community interest group. Let’s get it out of Council hands, regardless of ruling party. One would hope that “progressive” parties could get behind this as an example of the “new politics” that people appear to be looking for. Otherwise we are stuck with “nothing has changed” and where have we heard that recently?!

    By the way, on the whole I love Deon’s proposals and we’ve talked about them a lot. He’s quite rightly been reluctant to put these forward ’til now, as he didn’t want to be seen to be “pushing a scheme” and agreed that process was all. However, I can see why now is the time to show them as they illustrate what could be achieved if the artificial ties that are restricting imaginative outcomes were removed. His plans do follow the broad “non-negotiables” above, but it would be no more right just to adopt his scheme than the Terry one. It just shows what could be done and the paucity of what we’re currently being offered.

    Sorry to be so wordy. If you have been, thanks for reading!

    • About half way through your excellent reply, I wondered when the next Council elections are. If it is 2018, then the Lib Dems should make Riverside an election issue and take on board local initiatives. Clearly Fearsome Fleming regards accepting local initiatives as loss of face.

      As we will be mired in Brexit negotiations – and the full horror of Cameron’s madness becomes ever more apparent – the Tories won’t have an earthly.
      (Long has Lord True foreseen this Doom – and jumped before being pushed).

  6. twickerman

    Reminder

    If you haven’t already responded to the Council’s Riverside consultation, please do so today or in the next 3 days. It closes on Tuesday.

    It’s quick and easy with mostly tick boxes (e.g. Agree / Disagree / Don’t Care about continuing with riverside car park). But there are also a few comments boxes.

    Please tell them where to stick their unsightly car park!!!

    • Benjamin Makins

      Thanks Twickerman. I’ve done as told. Despite having followed this process very closely over year and years, when I got to the final page even I was surprised at the limited range of items we’re being consulted about this time around, as though everything else is fine. Mostly cosmetics about the embankment frontage of “Award Winning ” (for plants!) DJG, some steps and how the rear shared service “lane” can be prettied. It’s not fine. It’s completely inadequate. Let’s hope that this time the comments that will inevitably have been made in the free text dialogue boxes are reported widely, fully and in a timely manner. Clearly this whole thing is tragic and we’re going backwards in terms of an imaginative and appropriate solution. Time to call a halt I believe. I’ll post a separate comment.

  7. Dave Brown

    Illiad1: It doesn’t have to be a replica of Richmond, but surely a bit more imagination of how to deliver something in Twickenham to soothe the soul is not unreasonable or beyond us? This afternoon, visitors will be in Richmond in droves, probably arriving by train or tube or even on foot. Twickenham probably does need another car park, just not on the Riverside. Opposite the Albany?

    • Riverside Voter

      Does Twickenham need more parking? When the Council proposed a multi storey opposite the Albany in the Planning Framework it conceded to the Planning Inspector that there was capacity in the existing car parks for visitors bringing economic benefit to the town, not even counting the spare weekend capacity in their own Car Park. Their intention was to provide parking for commuters and residents in nearby developments, adding to the bait to the rat runners who are a menace in surrounding roads. The Planning Inspector enforced a caveat that parking would only be put there if there was a need in terms of visitors. In any case the land is owned by TFL and they asserted their need for it as a bus interchange and their right to plan whatever development goes there, probably a residential development over a bus interchange. They will be allowed four storeys just to add to the Little Croydon that will now surround the station.

      Sadly imagination is not something the Council seems to have much of in relation to Twickenham, in the words of the great Joni Mitchell “They paved the Riverside. They put up a parking lot.”

    • Dave, thanks for a sensible answer!! 😀 😀
      At least it has woken up the Albany question… The new Wharf has the downside of reflecting all the train and traffic noise down my street, it would be good for a small building to muffle it …!!! 🙂 🙂

      Riverside Voter- so does TFL even own that little carpark beside it??
      By the photos, it is obvious that carparking is needed – what would be better, is to change the parking zone, so that ONLY Twickenham people can use them, it is almost impossible to find a place near your house!

    • As I said below, I was misinformed, but many are still parking – where are the wardens when you need them???

    • Riverside Voter

      I don’t know if the adjoining land is TFLs but they were the only party to respond to the Twickenham Area Action Plan consultation as owners and the plan itself refers to the development of the land as a whole.

      I don’t understand the logic of “from the photos Parking is needed”. It is a bit like when children say they need something, when in fact they want something, it is an important distinction. The Eel Pie Islanders arguably are the only ones who actually need parking in the vicinity of the RIverside, though I am not sure how many spaces they actually need. The rest of us might want to save a couple of minutes when using the shops around Church Street over parking in the Waitrose multi storey or Holly Road but does that justify filling the nicest part of our town centre environment with cars? It really is full as well, not just the area between Water and Wharf Lane, it is all the way from St Mary’s Church to Wharf Lane with added parking between the RIverside and Church Street behind the Mary Wallace theatre. Given I have never seen all the parking in Twickenham full, the Council have conceded there is capacity, plus there is a big car park given over to the weekday wants of our Council employees, surely with a little imagination and focusing on needs not wants we can take at least part of our RIverside back?

    • Logic???? if there were photos of lots of empty parking spaces, what would you think??

    • Riverside Voter

      I would think Twickerati took a picture showing how the embankment Car Park blights a lovely view! I would not jump to the conclusion it shows we need more car parking when there are almost always places as the second photo does actually show. The picture certainly does not give any clues as to which of those cars actually need to be close to people’s homes, and which belong to someone who parked there because it is 100yards closer to Boots……

  8. Riverside Voter

    Our new Leader has announced his Cabinet and there is a new post, Cabinet Member for Planning and Strategic Development who will work alongside Fleming. Councillor Martin Seymour has been appointed and will now presumably be leading the project from now on, unless Councillor Fleming cannot be extracted from her seat at the lunch table with Terry. Councillor Seymour is Councillor Samuels colleague in representing Hampton North, a former Mayor and according to his register of interests his partner is employed as PA to the Partner of Cunnane Town Planning which according to their website “specialise in securing planning permissions for a wide range of developments throughout the United Kingdom and Ireland, and our clients include nationally known developers and housebuilders, landowners and local authorities.” Hmmmmm, not looking good for being more willing to listen to the Twickerati…

  9. St Maggies girl

    How many of the flats will be affordable? I would love to buy somewhere local, but my attempts to win the lottery have failed (so far). I don’t own a car, as I use the local shops, so your could turf over my space, should I have one! In the Mayor of London’s new transport strategy he talks about prioriting pedestrians over cars and building new green livable community hubs. Would love if LBRUT read it!

  10. Realist

    What is all this about trying to take away parking spaces for the new flats. What a joke, why should people be denied the ability to own a car if they want just because they happen to buying in a new build. Trust me, they’ll be getting ripped off enough as it is, with the prices as they are and the scams around leaseholds. The development at the station is not a good model to follow – excessive and again the ridiculous and mean spirited removal of parking for residents. Their guests and visitors will park on local roads during or after CPZ enforcement times as it’s not always possible to use the train to get everywhere.

    • Dave Brown

      Parked cars don’t do anything for visual improvement but Realist makes a fair point – of course they will want to park somewhere and I suspect very very few of the 40 Flats residents will have followed this interminable saga nor care very much about local lost opportunities. They will, I assume, get a very nice river view. The least they can do is put their cars underground with the cost factored into the prices of the flats. Will El Brute consider any alternatives to their beloved Terry? Like Pat Pending, I doubt it

    • illiad1

      very true – I wonder how many spaces are taken up by visitors for the U2 concert??? A frond of mine said that teddington is the *same* parking code as twick, so they can take our residents spaces!!

    • Riverside Voter

      In planning terms it is now the usual practise nationally to not give valuable town centre land to cars, unless for the disabled, if there are good transport links and car clubs in place. Providing homes for people is rightly the priority. Why should expensive RIverside flats that will profit Lord True’s friends be an exception when many of the residents already in the new developments in our community, not just the station development but most of the developments right across the borough for at least the last ten years are denied parking?

    • Riverside Voter

      illiad The D zone does not even stretch past Strawberry Hill never mind to Teddington. http://www.richmond.gov.uk/media/8349/zone_all.pdf

    • Riverside Voter- thanks for the info 🙂 I guess my friend is keeping quiet about the tickets he got for not checking!! 😛 😀

  11. Pat Pending

    Makes sense total to move cars away from the river. I like Deon’s ideas but doubt the Council will ever go back to the drawing board which is a shame. At very least they need to re-consider the scale and the parking to the benefit of the whole town.

    • Sally

      I know it’s exhausting having Councillor Flemming present consultation after consultation especially as we are have categorically refused her damn designer and his development several times . It’s like Green Eggs and Ham except with Terry Juniors’ plans on a plate and no happy ending yet in sight .
      What holds up the process is not protestors as much as Councillor Fleming’s determination to take us through this enough times to claim she has consulted thoroughly . Then tally Ho for the flats.
      I think the Deon designs are brilliant and would love to see them as a formal plan.. (S) He has done what Terry the second sees, to have been unwilling or unable,to do -had a look at the riverside area and come up with something in keeping with the riverside buildings and with a lot of green space .

      For God’s sake Twickerati is right. Look at the lovely terraces and gardens around Richmond bridge and the car free riverside path in front of them.How many people,sit there for the view and to watch the work on the boats ? Why does this work in Richmond ,but according to Councillor F what the people,of Twickenham want or deserve is to crouch in front of a big lump of housing and admire some cars?

      This really is,worth fighting for. Imagine that area with a stupid huge development all over it. Ridiculous!

    • illiad1

      Sally, “the lovely terraces and gardens around Richmond bridge and the car free riverside path” may be lovely, BUT! have you actually LOOKED at them??? 🙂
      Just from the bridge, you can see there is MUCH more height to work with…

      If you look on gmap, the amount of space that Richmond riverside terraces take will fill almost the whole of jubilee gardens – and as the height change from high street to riverside is less than half , it will look awful, to say nothing about waste of space!!

      can anyone confirm if Jubilee gardens is ‘protected’ ???

      Another thought, if you are visiting by car, what do you do if no parking is found???
      “oh there is a nice green over there, forget about this riverside!”

      It is not so long ago, that some did not realize there WAS a riverside!!

    • Sally

      You are quite right illiad , it’s a smaller site. I guess my point is that all what makes Richmond riverside desirable for locals and visitors along that stretch between bridges is the car free pedestrian/bike path ,the boat sheds either in use or changed to workshops and the chance to sit and look at the river without peering around the Iceland delivery truck.
      People wants the boats and the greenery and the chance to picnic by the water. Nobody at all rushes to the riverside to look at a shop and flats development,.
      Parking? Richmond riverside manages. We have the nearby large underground civic centre car park originally built for shared council /residential use , now pinched by the council for,exclusive use and empty on the weekend or outside office hours, How about that?

    • Deon Lombard

      Hi Pat,
      If there is overwhelming support from the residents of Twickenham for the removal of the carpark from the riverside, the Council should heed our voices and listen! We have been consistently ignored on this cardinal issue and many others, which is simply unacceptable. After all, council members are elected, and should serve the interests of their constituents. Furthermore, it is entirely possible to provide far more parking underground than could be scattered across this beautiful site, and this would provide parking for the benefit of the whole of central Twickenham which is sorely needed. There is no doubt in my mind that such underground provision would pay for itself time and again, particularly if it is part of a decent overall vision for this site instead of the banal limited offering they are attempting to foist on us.

  12. Dave Brown

    “All parking required by the development will be
    accommodated within the under podium car park” – Twickenham Rediscovered Page 12. On the same page it I counted a net reduction of 11 parking spaces. Unless “under podium” does not equal “under ground” I’m obviously missing why this is such a bad idea.

    • twickerman

      It’s bad because it leaves the Riverside car park as it is now, an eyesore.
      This is a fantastic opportunity to take all the cars and the road away from the riverbank and create a riverside park from the DJG down to the riverbank.
      There are 59 parking places on the Embankment and 14 on Water Lane. Just imagine how much more attractive the Riverside would be without the cars.
      The council’s proposed under-podium car park is a good idea, but it is exclusively for occupants of the new development.
      Either they need to add another 73 spaces under the podium and/or reduce the number of spaces required by not providing spaces for the 40 new flats. This is exactly what they agreed to do at the station development and is standard planning practice with buses and trains on the doorstep. A few disabled and car club spaces would be provided as usual in these circumstances.
      What would you prefer on the Riverside. The same old car park eyesore or a pedestrianised riverside park?

    • Dave Brown

      While I agree the area would be improved by taking the cars away, I would bet that the budget for this project does not include an underground car park for an additional 73 cars. We go round in circles

    • Benjamin Makins

      Good point Dave. Part of the problem is there is no financial plan for this project documented or published anywhere.

      We don’t know how the development will be funded, whether from Council reserves, borrowing or by the developer who will then take a stake. We don’t know who will own the site and buildings when completed.

      We don’t know how much of the capital spent by the Council to buy the site has to be recovered and over what timescale, we don’t know whether the development of the site is expected to achieve a return on investment / profit, we don’t know what revenue generation targets are set.

      So everyone is working in the dark,, including the architects, unless there’s a financial plan somewhere that they are working to! So we don’t have any idea of the required scale of development overall, what the balance of commercial (offices, workshop, restaurants and shops etc) to residential should be, what the balance of “affordable” to “for market profit” housing is, what public access building space will be available and if to be subsidised or how funded.

      Has anyone seen a business or of government scheme anywhere else that had no business and financial plan as a defining document for the proposal? Really, this is lamentable.

      So maybe that’s why this all continues to go round in circles.

      By the way, if more parking is required it’s been demonstrated that under cover parking can be provided and charged for at a rate to cover the costs over a reasonable time and even generate surplus revenues in time. Cost is only one side of the equation. Income is the other.

  13. twickerman

    Deon’s plans relocate all the parked cars from the Embankment and Water Lane in an ‘underground’ car park.
    The car park would run along the Embankment (at approx top of pavement level) and would have a pedestrian entrance opposite Eel Pie bridge so it is convenient for islanders.

    • twickerman

      But, take away 40 spaces for new flats and the numbers look much more achievable.

      The council has said it is ‘investing’ in a New Heart for Twickenham. Investing in a few more under-podium spaces will enable them to deliver a far superior Heart, with the town square and riverside park that they initially promised us, that we can all be proud of.

      BTW, there is no budget for this project. Just an aim to achieve nil cost, which ultimately means nil investment!

  14. Anonymous

    Deon Lombard’s plans look excellent. Opening up the river front in a sensitive way. I thoroughly agree in the parks rather than car parks idea but would like to see underground parking or alternative parking options in place.

    • whiteknight

      Is it possible to have a direct link to these plans? It is very difficult to see the details in what is shown above.

  15. Ellen

    First I’ve seen of the Deon Lombard plans, but I think they are great. Park not carpark for sure!

  16. Alexs Sinclair

    Park the cars under ground. Good for everyone. It would be a tragedy not to.

    • illiad1

      As the plans are are actually ‘street level’ it surely should be ‘under podium’ not below ground level…..

  17. twickerman

    Paul,
    If you read the small (green) print, you will see that Deon says ‘pedestrians and cycles predominant’.
    Whether that means shared used along the riverbank (per Richmond) or a cycle track I’m not sure.
    I suggest you state your preference(s) when you respond to the consultation.
    One thing I am sure about is that by removing cars and parking from the riverbank it’ll be a much more attractive and enjoyable environment.

  18. The Deon Lombard scheme looks better than anything the council have come up with. Could we just have a narrow cycle track in there somewhere – with Kings Street a dual carriageway this is the best cycle route to Richmond.

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