Friday, 18 November 2011
Another Reason Why Moylan Should Never Lead This Borough
Left: a vulgar show off
The Dame had her attention drawn to a vulgar, self promoting blog operated by Daniel Moylan. What an embarrassment! Packed full of tedious detail as to how brilliant he thinks he is. Someone really needs to tell him that it is terribly poor form to show off in this way: it gives us sophisticated locals the feeling that he is not "one of us". But, of course, he is not. And this is the reason that he would be the worst kind of Leader. He has no idea how to encourage and motivate. Great leaders need to inspire affection and loyalty. Moylan is devoid of these qualities. The Borough is home to some of the cleverest and most successful of residents. They really don't need to be told by a small time local politician with no track record in business, " I know best". He tried this on in Sloane Square and was sent packing. But if you can take the trouble to read his self-aggrandising blog you will read, 'plans for Sloane Square are merely on hold'. What arrogance! It should make one very nervous. If Moylan ever got power there would be open and continual warfare between the Council and residents. Moylan thrives on confrontation- a lousy recipe for democratic participation.
Anyway, the Dame was very impressed by this damning indictment of another failed Moylan project from her excellent rival, The Chelsea Blogger.....
"Anybody following the London news recently will have heard the furore over the initiative to ‘pedestrianise’ the SE corner of Sloane Square. Protests have occurred and petitions have been delivered to the relevant authorities summing up the locals opinion on this half arsed attempt at ‘going Dutch’. The result is an Amsterdam type arrangement where pedestrians and vehicles occupy a shared space. What I mean is that there is no physical boundary from the pavement to the road – a kerb to you and me. The resultant layout is one of overpriced fancy paving blocks extending from the area outside the tube station right across the road to the east of Hugo Boss in one uniform pattern and, here’s the scary bit: at the same level, with no change in colour or texture and no tactile strip (big dimples at the edge of the pavement).
What happens? People walk straight out of the station thinking the area is pedestrianised, right into the oncoming traffic! Now it would be easy to launch into a rant about the ‘ idiots at the council’ wouldnt it? So let’s assess the evidence and give them a chance….. First off they recognized the problem i.e. One of people – generally children and the infirm – walking into a busy road and came up with a solution. Signs, yes big red signs. So much for an easy on the eye public realm? Anyway, the signs were placed so high that only horse mounted police and basketball players could read them! So they lowered the signs, scratching the nice new street furniture they were attached to on the way down, to ensure that even 7/8ths of the cast of ‘Snow White’ can now read them should The Royal Court Theatre opt for a more commercial production this Christmas.
Let’s face it we’ve all been to Amsterdam (plus some other European towns) and seen the street layouts there, hell most of us have probably even come close to sparring with the odd tram after a session sucking on a bong in the Bulldog bar. But it works in The ‘Dam and it works because:
A) generations of locals have had this kind of full integration for as long as there were cars and trams being introduced to the roads, and
B) because it’s everywhere, it’s uniform and they don’t have to think, it’s what their autopilot is set to. In fact the Amsterdam residents are so used to it that they influence the legions of stoned tourists who float around in relative safety following the crowd.
I’ve drawn a blank on trying to find out the rationale behind Kensington and Chelsea planners causing so much disruption to such a busy part of London and ending up with a completed project that falls way short of safety compliance.
What are we left with? Some egotistical ‘vision’ that cost £350,000 to install – that’s almost £1000 per square metre of grey monotone street covering reminscent of a Moscow suburb. Great if you are an inline skater, no good if you’re: blind, partially sighted, infirm, old, out with the kids, out with the dogs, out in your high heels/MBT’s, out of your head on 5 pints of Stella/a bottle of Pinot Noir after a sesh in The Botanist.