`Your future dream is a shopping scheme…' from Anarchy In The UK, Sex Pistols
The Summer of Bread and Circuses begins this weekend with the Jubilee getting hammered into everyone's heads via a zillion union jacks and red, white and blue vuvuzelas screeching down the streets. Avoid it all with a trip to the isolated Salford Beach, down Springfield Lane in Trinity.
Here you can sample the calm rolling waters of the River Irwell, admire the graffiti art on the walls and maybe build little sand castle replicas of the forthcoming giant supermarket that's going to be plonked on the green grounds right next door.
Yep, Urban Splash (US) is at it again, this time with partners Si-Si Developments, with a planning application already submitted to Salford Council. It's for a `foodstore' (thought to be ASDA) and `up to forty residential dwellings'.
Some of the houses and flats will, of course, look out onto the Irwell with its stunning views of swans, herons, otters and other incredible wildlife – except that they might all be scared off by this massive development which Urban Splash in its application states "should also seek to protect and enhance the ecological offer of the site…"
The planning application that's gone into the Council bigs up the eco side of the supermarket with phrases that would have Private Eye's Pseuds Corner splitting its sides…
The huge consumer food hangar aims to "Challenge the normal supermarket concept" by sticking some flowers on the roof, or as US puts it… "the natural green roof or meadow presents a unique and beautiful addition to the sequences of public realm spaces…etc".
The `wildflower roof meadow' and `tree lined car park' will, according to US, fulfil its landscape design which sets out to "make a bio-diverse landscape which maximises the potential for increasing plant and animal species within this area of Salford…"
Tell that to the otters! They love car fumes, delivery trucks and construction noise!
In the meantime, however, this unspoilt Costa del Salford is the ideal place to get away all things Jubilee. As you slap on the Ambre Solaire, whack Anarchy In The UK on the headphones – `Your future dream is a shopping scheme…' – and build ASDA sand supermarkets, you can ponder whatever happened to the previous Urban Splash plan for over 500 flats and an artificial beach on this very spot…
Let the Salford Star help with the story… Salford Council first got into the Springfield Lane bed with Urban Splash in 2004 when it officially signed the land over, in the process taking on full responsibility for the "numerous covenants" on the area dating back to the mid 1800s.
In March 2005 Urban Splash paid the Council £250,000 for the land which was supposed to be the first `minimum payment' of each phase of development with a profit share agreement to follow that. Unfortunately this first payment of £250,000 is the only payment that we can trace for this land from US to Salford Council. Indeed we asked the Council if there had been any other payments but it hasn't responded.
That year Urban Splash, following a competition paid for with £12,000 of public money (from NWDA), put in three planning applications for various developments including hundreds of flats (with no affordable housing), retail and commercial spaces plus that beach.
The current Urban Splash application accepts that its supermarket plan is "less intrusive" than this previous scheme - which, of course, Salford Council planning panel passed without a murmur at the time. The urban sprawl by the Irwell was due to begin in 2008. But never got off the ground.
Indeed, in that year, Salford Council's legal team stated that Urban Splash was "In breach of the Development Agreement" and that there was an "option to terminate and seek damages".
Salford Council didn't take up that option and is now hoping to cash in with supermarket check outs. If it ever gets off the ground. If it does, please remember that this `wildflower meadow roofed' supermarket is not `another dull ugly shed' (copyright US) which will be "a beautiful addition" to this area of Salford.
Never mind God Save The Queen – God save the swans and otters, we say!
Enjoy the tranquillity while it lasts…
See also Costa del Salford – a short funny movie on YouTube made on a mobile phone by Salford Community Media Partnership – click here
And see Salford Star printed Issue 8 – click here for PDF
See also STUFF THE JUBILEE SALFORD STYLE PART 1 - click here
STUFF THE JUBILEE SALFORD STYLE PART 2 - click here
STUFF THE JUBILEE SALFORD STYLE PART 3 - click here
STUFF THE JUBILEE SALFORD STYLE PART 5 - click here
STUFF THE JUBILEE SALFORD STYLE PART 6 - click here