Green perspectives on Stockwood and Bristol. Mostly.

Thursday, 27 August 2009

The Ashton Gate Tesco Debate - a NIMBY view from Stockwood

All credit to Aurea Mediocritas for some excellent and revealing research about the rival petitions , for and against a massive new 24hour Tesco at Ashton Gate. Well worth a look.

I'd hesitated to write about this particular hot potato, others are doing it very well without my help. I'll limit myself to a very local angle.

Since we've already got a mega-Tesco on our doorstep in Stockwood, you wouldn't expect much local passion for another one to built over at Southville. Even so, a few Stockwoodsmen have enthusiastically signed up to the pro-Tesco bandwagon. Embarrassingly, that's more than have so far signed up to my own petition for a city transport interchange at Temple Meads. If only I'd linked mine to a dream of World Cup football!

Our Stockwood petitioners for Tesco, along with others from all over east Bristol, South Glos and Banes, assert that a new Ashton Gate megastore will, as the petition claims, reduce "pressure on inner city roads around the bedminster Bridge area" and people from Avonmouth will get a wider choice of supermarkets to drive to. Such un-NIMBY altruism is deeply moving, even if the logic's a bit dodgy!

The initial planning choice for the Ashton Gate site was a mixed development of sports and recreational facilities and housing - both of which are needed, with a first call on urban brownfield sites such as this.

Of course, if housing at Ashton Gate is sacrificed in favour of a Tesco shed and accompanying tarmac and traffic, those homes will need to be built somewhere else instead. Step forward the rolling acres of Stockwood (and Hengrove, and Whitchurch, and the green belt).

The Stockwood petitioners for Tesco are even more self sacrificing than I thought.

For those who really want to weigh up the issues, without red-tinted dreams of perhaps seeing world cup matches in nine years time, there's plenty in the other blogs, not least Charlie Bolton's, where the real and lasting impacts on the Ashton/Southville area are much more clearly explained.

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