A New Shift, An Economic Burden?



Today more than half the population lives in an Urban area, squashing the post-war utopian dream of the Garden City.


Urban density, environmental legislation and the introduction of congestion charges, has resulted in a rapid decline in private car ownership in major cities. 


Trinity Square - a carpark and shopping complex in Gateshead England was designed in the Brutalist style by Rodney Gorden for the Owen Luder Partnership in 1967. The concrete structure, which dominated the skyline of the town and featured seven tiers of raised parking decks supported by a delicate forest of piloti.


The car park had a prominent role in the 1971 film Get Carter. The 1985 opening of the Gateshead Interchange Centre (a bus and metro transport hub) combined with the introduction of town center access charges for private motorists made the car park largely redundant. Throughout my numerous visits to Welbeck Street, I witnessed a similar fate. Trinity Square was eventually demolished in 2010 to allow for the redevelopment of the site by Spenhill Developments, a division of Tesco PLC. The replacement building, with the same name, was nominated for the 2014 'Carbuncle Cup'.

A similar fate was dealt with Preston Bus Station, although heavy campaigning by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) brought a turn around in public opinion. It was saved from demolition and awarded Grade II Listed Status in September 2013. The council had argued for the demolition of the building claiming it would cost in the region of £17 million to modernize. English Heritage commented that the Grade II Listing would not prevent further changes being made to the building provided it architectural significance was protected.



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