Unimpressed by Strand plans

PUBLISHED: 15:00 25 December 2008 | UPDATED: 10:14 10 June 2010

I AM rather unimpressed by the new proposals for The Strand. Having seen the plans, I am slightly worried that Exmouth will make the mistake, once again, that having a piazza-style space will somehow transform the town. Once again, I hear you ask?

I AM rather unimpressed by the new proposals for The Strand. Having seen the plans, I am slightly worried that Exmouth will make the mistake, once again, that having a piazza-style space will somehow transform the town.

Once again, I hear you ask? Well, remember the Cafe Quarter? Yes, friends, Exmouth has been here before. The Cafe Quarter was built not too long ago for quite a tidy sum.... and once it was built, the council lost interest. We have expensive in-floor accent lighting that is never used, cafes that have tables but have to keep them near their buildings (instead of allowing them to spread out), and, well, not a lot else. It appears the council is yet again being romanced by the idea of developing yet another grand scheme, or another 'Vision of Exmouth'.

So, yet another cafe. Well, that's just what we need, isn't it?

Woolworths down the tube, Rolle College gone, Job Centre gone - let's build a cafe then! Exmouth is full of cafes, and doesn't need another one. Where is the support for the many existing cafe owners... or has their voice been lost in a council/developer discussion?

We are not Venice. The Strand is not St Mark's Square - it's a functional hub for a small town. It does not need vast amounts of taxpayers' money spending on it.

I am just wondering: is this yet another council folly? I find it rather strange that the redevelopment of The Strand is on the agenda at the same time as the ASDA development. Is ASDA demanding that the town changes to meet its demands? Will ASDA become the central hub of the town once The Strand parking has gone? I suspect the council is being led, by the nose, into spending good money after bad.

Michael Greenland,

BA (hons) PgDIP MCSD,

(via email


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