Transforming Pollok Park: Detailed Feedback to planning

For a while now, there have been proposals and consultations regarding a restructuring Pollok Country Park access arrangements, known as ‘Transforming Pollok Country Park’.

The full planning proposal was made available earlier in June (ref 20/01352/FUL), and the closing date for feedback is 6th July 2020. I’ve been a bit busy with AGMs, and various other things, but finally pulled my finger out at the weekend to review and write my own feedback (after prompting for some feedback to assist with drafting the GoBike response to same)

I’m afraid it’s another epic, in a similar vein to the Bellahouston park objection earlier in the year. But then I do live very, very close to the park and am directly impacted. That said, I hope I’m not about to find myself on a list at Glasgow Planning HQ…

During the drafting, I found some key points that may be of interest, and wanted to make it available for anybody who may be drafting their own.

  • There’s some deeply flawed proposals for Haggs/Shawmoss junction that prevents a right turn heading north. This will cause a lot of traffic to go into side-roads or through already busy rat-runs in Waverley park.
  • The traffic analysis that accompanies the proposal is very limited in scope.
  • The retention of the Burrell carpark for – get this – 109 general parking spaces in addition to a new carpark, is fundamentally at odds with the goal of removing cars from the centre of the park. I think it should be Blue Badge/access only, or – conversely – the sole car park, with a rethought access arrangement.
  • Further, that usage/modelling necessitates construction of a new road in the park (ie. to support two-way traffic). If they didn’t have as much use being made, it wouldn’t have to be two way, and it could perhaps be widened more sympathetically to allow passing of limited access traffic.
  • Much of the modelling/driving for a separate entrance was because of tourist traffic, ie. buses etc coming to the park, that couldn’t get under the Pollokshaws road bridge. With Coronavirus, much of this premise is up in the air.
  • That the above really just suggests they reassess their assumptions, certainly the analysis, before they start digging up the park.

Lots more in my draft. It is lengthy, but it feels reasonably coherent and – as much as it can be – to-the-point. I do have sympathy for the planning department, and want to try and be reasonable and help them reflect it up to the people (councillors) making the decision.

Plus they’ve published hundreds and hundreds of pages of supporting documents, they have to expect long, detailed responses.

I doubt it’ll make any difference to the inevitable decision: it feels like this has political weight behind it. Whilst I have clearly reservations, if it got built mostly as-is (with a few pragmatic shifts), I’d not be tying myself to a tree.

I ultimately think they had some tough decisions, but bent in a different direction than they could have if they’d not ruled things out earlier on.

I will be reaching out to my elected representatives for some of the implications to request they make representations of their own, not least I think the proposal is basing itself on an inadequate traffic analysis and outdated likely visitor modelling.

Hope it’s of use.

Other feedbacks I’m aware of that may be helpful if you’re of a similar mindset:

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