Bus station redevelopment: bad deal for Exeter, bad deal for democracy.

Exeter Green Party has slammed Exeter Labour councillors for pushing through a bad deal on the redevelopment of the Exeter bus station site. At a special meeting on 20th January councillors agreed outline planning permission which fails to secure any developer funds for a new bus and coach station. Greens had called on councillors to reject the plans.

Objectors locked out of Council Meeting, many had invitations from the Council to attend.Lots of people wanted to attend the Guild Hall to oppose the Council’s plans, but many found themselves locked out in the cold – making a mockery of the democratic process.The City Council has said it will now find £6.25m for a new bus station, with the costs ultimately falling on Exeter rather than the site’s developer.

The proposed bus station is nowsmaller than originally planned, does not include facilities for the 340,000 annual coach users and does not offer the potential for future growth in passenger numbers or services.

Objectors raised concerns about traffic plans, which could have a knock on effect on St James and St David’s, pollution, inadequate facilities and routes for cyclists and plans for the new pool and leisure centre.

The Green Party’s plans for a ‘Best of Devon’ market square were well received and a bus user group is to be established following Green Party calls for such an input from public transport users.Potential future councillor for St David’s ward, Diana Moore, met with Council leader Pete Edwards ahead of the full council meeting to voice her concerns. Diana said:

“It is disappointing the Council didn’t have the courage to secure a better deal for Exeter, especially for an enhanced bus and coach station. A state-of-the-art transport hub would encourage the big  shift to public transport we so desperately need to address the city’s pollution, congestion and carbon emissions. The development of the site must prioritise people’s needs, not the developer’s financial interests.

I’ll be taking up the matter of a market square directly with the developer to urge them to bring forward plans for a modern market to showcase the ‘Best of Devon’ and celebrate Exeter’s diversity.”

Read Exeter Green Party’s objection in full here: http://bit.ly/EGPParisStreet


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