Upper Hamilton Road Streetscape

The Autumn issue of the Prestonville Post introduces the Upper Hamilton Road Streetscape Study, prepared by local designers and arising from discussions on this blog. The Post is going out first to people in Upper Hamilton Road, Buxton Road and Exeter Street; it’ll be delivered to the rest of Prestonville about a week later. It’s also here – in colour!

So is the presentation document for the study. It doesn’t describe the various options or the thinking behind them, but it does give an idea of what this is all about. We have an opportunity to discuss it at the PCA AGM in the Church Hall, Exeter Street, on Tuesday 17 November at 7.30pm.

Please also post your comments or questions below. Alternatively you can email comments@prestonville.org.uk.

Prestonville Post Autumn 2009

Upper Hamilton Streetscape Study Presentation Document

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8 Responses to Upper Hamilton Road Streetscape

  1. IAN WOODWARD says:

    A number of comments to kick-start the discussion.

    1. It seems that Exeter Street, Buxton Road, Lancaster Road and Coventry Street would all bear the brunt of additional traffic so that traffic along Upper Hamilton Street can be reduced. If so, I’m not sure I want additional traffic along Buxton Road where I live.

    2. The plans do not appear to consider other traffic measures that would be beneficial to stopping the area being used as a rat-run – and could create a more pedestrian friendly area. For example, a one-way system and traffic calming measures (sleeping policemen) etc. The existing ‘two-way’ roads in the area are already difficult to negotiate (with traffic parked on each side) and regularly involve the precarious reversing back to the end of a street to let on-coming cars/vans/lorries pass.

    3. The lorries which use Joe’s Café in the mornings (and double park at the junction between Buxton/Exeter/Upper Hamilton) already cause a bit of a blockage. Won’t the streetscape plan compound this by reducing the area available for large lorries? Better still, perhaps the traffic wardens might stop the lorries double parking. I guess it might help if there could be a dedicated lorry bay outside Joe’s café – as that is the business that benefits from the custom.

    4. The kiosk (if based on the design shown in the plans) is totally out of character with the area and my first though was – ‘what an eyesore’.

    5. The Chimney House is a great pub and I think we all enjoyed seeing the back of the “Marquess of Exeter” and its landlords. However, the late evening noise from the Chimney House is creeping up and the proposed additional recreational space (to be utilised presumably by the pub’s customers) will no doubt increase volumes. I think this potential problem may have been why a previous similar proposal was turned down a few years ago.

    I do not want to appear negative as I am completely in favour of improving the area. Nor do I have anything against Joe’s café or The Chimey House – indeed, I use both regularly and think they are great places.

    Nonetheless, as the plans stand at the moment – unless I have misinterpreted them, it does seem that Upper Hamilton gets all the benefits of the proposed scheme while the neighbouring streets get additional traffic volumes and little in return.

    Ian Woodward – Buxton Road

  2. Phillip says:

    Having just read the online version of the next Prestonville Post, I am surprised to see that the proposals put forward seem to involve at least part pedestrianization of the roads. You will be aware from my previous posts that such a scheme in this area falls outside the Governments 4 basic minimum requirements, and I would therefore welcome your comments on this.
    Whilst writing, I do agree with some of the points Ian raised and will expand on this later if need be. Personally, I cannot see any real benefits to the area as a whole.

    Phillip Maynard

  3. jer16 says:

    In the light of Ian Woodward’s comments, could we perhaps have a fall-back position? I believe there is urgent need to reshape the corner of Upper Hamilton Road and Buxton Road in the way shown in the proposals and this on its own could probably (?) be less contentious than the rest of the proposal. Especially as it would cost less. Could the new pavement-edge, making the road easier and safer to cross, be agreed and submitted as minimum requirement?

    Or I am I being naïve?

    Elizabeth Rimmington

  4. SamHowe says:

    Anything which makes better use of the large open space on the Junction of Upper Hamilton, Exeter and Buxton Roads has got to be a good thing. Making the area more pedestrian friendly has to be seen as a positive. The concept appears to provide the following benefits:

    Promoting the community feel of the prestonville area
    Providing a boost to the shopping parade on Upper Hamilton Road
    Providing a safer environment for our children

    As the house directly opposite the Chimney House, we are one of the most affected properties. I think that by working with the landlord and continuing to ensure there are sensible licensing conditions, any concerns can be easily addressed.

    No doubt there will be several iterations of the designs, but as an initial concept, this feels like it should be wholeheartedly supported by the local community.

  5. paulwinter says:

    My understanding is that the plans have been presented to get the ball rolling with discussion and are not to be taken literally.
    The term, shared space, has been used to describe this idea which, I think is appropriate, given its history. With its parade of shops and empty roads, people could cross and children could play safely without fear of a 40 mph horse and cart racing up Buxton Road and accelerating along Exeter Street. It’s fair to say, that 120 years on, it now resembles a carpark ( yes, two of which are mine).
    It seems to me, that the recent introduction of the motor car to this Victorian landscape, lies at the heart of the issues that are preventing us from seeing what the true motivation behind this idea really stands for. It’s not the specifics of how many parking bays, or one way streets, or sleeping policemen, that’s all stuff to be bashed out and negotiated. The wider incentive is to build on the already existing strong community that we are lucky enough to live in.
    There may never be the money to fulfil this plan but if we can find a few reasons why this will work instead of why it won’t, it may inspire other people to come forward with ideas without fear of negativity and that alone may do the job of building the community.
    I, personally, have heard nothing but support for this idea and I am surprised by the comments on this blog.
    Paul Winter – 7 Exeter St

  6. julian65 says:

    What’s not to like? I suppose it would be possible to pick the idea apart and look for the downside, and obviously some people have managed to, but if there is a downside it has eluded me. It’ll create an attractive environment and it would increase and enhance the social space in the area, thus strengthening community. It’ll encourage existing local businesses and bring in new business. It needs to be encouraged and supported.

    Julian Radford
    Exeter Street

  7. Tracey_Hill says:

    I like it! The shape of the streets seems ideal to increase the amount of pedestrian space without impinging too much on the roadway, and the idea of having some kind of communal area is great. I think the design of the kiosk in the drawings could be improved, but on the whole I think it would add a lot to the area.

  8. markwilson says:

    The plans could be a catalyst to transform what has little more than a car and lorry park into the centrepiece of the neighbourhood. Better street furniture won’t make our already very friendly community any more so but it could address some problems: the hazards of the double parking, the speed of traffic, the vast slab of grey tarmac. The specifics are at an early stage, and while I don’t like all the proposals, there is plenty of food for thought there – and the will to try to see something come of it.

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