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Sleeping rough?


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The news that there are insufficient "affordable" homes for current levels of housing need, coincides with reports, that homelessness is now at record levels. Some politicians are complaining that 20% deposits on a mortgage are too high - errm, hang on a minute, isn't cheap, give away mortgages what caused the financial crash? Not only is it nigh impossible for average folk to buy a house, but increasing demand is now increasing the cost of renting - so no surprise then, that folk are sleeping in shop doorways. Then there's the issue of building more houses, assuming the Government will was there, we'll be back to battles over the green belt and urban sprawl. So, what are we to do? :unsure:

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Housing estates on the slopes of Ben Nevis and Snowdon - nice one H! Perhaps some form of cheap rented accomodation might do the trick? That would satisfy demand, giving folk a home and the reduction in demand would have a knock on effect in reducing house prices - oh, it's been thought of before - they're called "Council Houses". Now, where to build and who for? Well, the current demographic trend has been for single occupancy dwellings (flats), so perhaps 4 bedroom detached houses in the green belt, may not be a good idea - hows about high rise flats in our City centres, at the same time re-populating and revitalising them, at the same time reducing travel to work transport requirements (three birds with one stone)? Or is such thinking too far outside the box, for our politicians? :unsure:

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Plenty of high rise flats sitting empty in city centres across the country, problem is that

 

1) the nice ones are too expensive for most people,

 

2) the cheap (council) ones are so grotty and crime ridden you wouldn't wish them on any decent person,

 

3) people don't work in city centres anymore - so no reduced travelling, and no-where to park the car you're still going to need.

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Tosh - every Town and City has "commuters" - in the case of Warrington - 25,000 IN & 25,000 OUT. Folk working in the Town Centre tend not to live in flats over their shops/offices - hence the grid locked roads and packed trains. Unfortunately, out of town retail developments have drawn custom away from the high street, leaving depopulated centres, something that could be rectified by high density dwellings. :roll:

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Get your facts straight Obs. That's 25,000 in to areas AROUND Warrington town centre itself - Gemini, Birchwood, Winwick Quay etc. And 25,000 out of suburbs of Warrington - Lymm, Stockton Heath, Grappenhall, Callands, Westbrook, and all the others. WARRINGTON doesn't have many commuters at all. The employment areas AROUND Warrington do.

 

The number of people working IN THE TOWN CENTRE ie. within walking distance of the bus or train stations, is relatively small as a proportion of the total. So town centre based public transport - trains especially - are of absolutely no use to the vast majority when it comes to getting to work.

 

The main reason for Warrington's gridlocked roads at rush hour is that it sits on a river and a ship canal and there's a limited number of places to cross either - almost nowhere that avoids the town centre completely. Add to that the fact that the majority of workplaces are north of the water - along the M62 - while a large number of people live south of it, and you're always going to get pressure on the crossing points. Once you've realised the problem, the solution is simple - more crossing points, and routes which avoid Bridge Foot.

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Simples the word - the 25,000 figures relate to entering and leaving the WBC area - so not Birchwood etc. These could be folk from say Wigan, Widnes Liverpool etc and visa versa - next! :roll: As for the "river crossing" - you've obviously not experiened the A49 from and to the M62 very often! :D

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Simples the word - the 25,000 figures relate to entering and leaving the WBC area - so not Birchwood etc. These could be folk from say Wigan, Widnes Liverpool etc and visa versa - next! :roll: As for the "river crossing" - you've obviously not experiened the A49 from and to the M62 very often! :D

 

Since when has Birchwood not been in the Borough of Warrington????????

 

Anyone working in Birchwood (or any of the other places I mentioned)is travelling into WBC's area and so is included in your figures - but is NOT travelling into Warrington town centre. So you're argument that we all should live in town centre shoeboxes to avoid travelling to work simply makes no sense.

 

Similarly, many people living in the residential suburbs I mentioned commute out of Warrington to work - if they lived in the town centre then the A49 would be a whole lot worse!

 

Also, a significant amount of the traffic clogging up the A49 and other routes to and from the north has not originated in the town centre, much of it has come from south of the water and been funneled into and then out of town by the location of the river crossings.

 

We just need two more crossings, one to the east of town and one to the west. High level, not swing bridges over the ship canal. The eastern one could be provided either by buying out and abolishing the toll on the Warburton toll bridge or by bringing the existing railway bridge at Thellwall back into use and linking it to Kingsway bridge and also to Manchester Road closer to the M6 via a cheap new low level bridge. The western route probably needs to run from the A56 somewhere around Higher Walton to meet up with the bottom of the A574 at its junction with the A57.

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Errm not quite Ink: these are commutes from OUTSIDE the Borough into the Borough; or from INSIDE the Borough to places like Manchester or Liverpool. Admitedly, not all of them are to the Town Centre; but seeing that Counci; Staff, Police, Law Courts, Solicitors, Retail Shopping etc etc, are located in the T/C, a significant portion will, and the multi storey and other car parks are full to prove it. But now you've reminded me, there will be "commutes" within the Borough in addition. But back to the original topic: I'm sure homeless folk, who will never be able to afford to buy a house, would appreciate a "shoebox" in the Town Centre in the form of a high rise flat to sleeping in a shop doorway! As I've said, you can either build out into the Green Belt, increasing internal commute distances and urban sprawl or you can build up, concentrating development within existing built areas; that's of course, if Government wishes to provide sufficient houses to meet demand. :shock:

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Obs, the 25,000 figure YOU quoted refers to exactly the commuters I pointed out - namely those commuting into and out of the borough as a whole. That number says nothing at all about the town centre.

 

And if you think a "significant" portion of the town's employment is in it's dead or dying town centre then you really are on another planet! You listed a handful of organisations based in the town centre - well there is FAR more retail outside the centre than in, FAR more council staff based outside the centre than in, FAR more solicitors outside than in. Then there's all the other industries and offices in Woolston, Birchwood, Risley, Culcheth, Gemini, Omega, Winwick Quay, Lingley Mere, Daresbury, Stretton, plus the college in Padgate and up by Long Lane, and the hospital (not exactly town centre, is it?). Still think the town centre is significant?

 

Encouraging people to live in the town centre will simply mean MORE traffic on the town centre roads each morning and evening, not LESS.

 

There's also no point saying that the council should take over empty properties and bring them back into use. They don't have that power - except in a few cases - and anyway they got out of the housing business altogether when they just gave away our entire housing stock (8,700 homes - call it £3/4 BILLION pounds worth of OUR assets) to their cronies at GGHT.

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As I said- you can either build up or out. Urban sprawl will mean even more travel to work distance and thus more traffic. :roll:

 

Perhaps if the council were to employ more local people,(as they did NOT even in your day) perhaps the problem wouldn't be as bad. When you have people travelling from Bury and Wales there is obviously something wrong. :roll:

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If the law permited, it could be part of a contract of employment (IE to live within (?)miles of the work or the Borough of one's place of work) - which could reduce the travel to work distance and reliance on cars. BUT, the issue of "suitable" accomodation is then raised - many London commuters don't live in the City cos properties are either too expensive or in "sink" estates. Hence they pay £thousands on rail fares to commute in from afar. Most Town/City centers are dead or dying, imo principly due to the fact that they've been de-populated over the years. Historically, with the industrial revolution, the work-force gravitated from farms to the new industrial sites, with housing for the workers generally surrounding the factory, within walking distance - no cars then anyway! Then, the better off started to gravitate to residential areas in the "suburbs", which coincided with the greater mobility provided by "the car". Now, assuming a house building surge; we can continue to spread out urban development, until Towns merge with other Towns at the expense of the green belt, and ever more pressure is applied to transport infrastructures OR we can accomodate folk within existing urban areas through high density development. This still leaves the question of "affordability". I believe high rise tends to be cheaper and the provision of "social" housing would reduce demand, which would reduce house prices generally. An increase in the proportion of rented accomodation, would make career mobility easier, as folk wouldn't have to depend on a house sale in order to move to another Town/City. :shock:

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