Where are the trees or any plants??
I have had an unusual start to my working week today since I had to take the morning off to take my youngest son to Gloucester for an interview. He hopes to join the RAF and this was the first stage of the process. So I had potentially two hours to kill at Gloucester Docks – not a prospect I was looking forward to.
I have been to the Docks on a number of occasions but not for about 5 years. Bizarrely the building where I was expecting to get a coffee and look at some shops had completely gone and I couldn’t even work out where it should have been. There has been a lot of development at the docks for a number of years. They have redeveloped the old warehouse buildings into a range of apartments and offices. The area around these buildings is predominantly paved pedestrian areas with lots of seating areas and off course the docks with boats add an interest. Gloucester for those of you who don’t know it is not near the coast so this is an inshore dock which is part of the Sharpness Canal link to the sea.
The development work is still underway, lots of construction workers and pile driving going on, presumably for more buildings. There is now a designer outlet centre which was quite nice and lots of coffee shops near the water but…
the one thing that struck me was the complete lack of any planting of any kind. Now I know this is an area of docks and that it used to be a commercial/industrious area so trees etc would not be practicable. However this is now a residential/office development so why oh why has no one thought to incorporate some trees or areas of planting to break up the bleakness of the warehouses. The picture below shows just how much paving there is so why not
leave some areas clear – I can see some nice trees here with maybe some sweeps of grasses – simple but effective. It was a warm day today and I struggled to find somewhere to sit and read my book with a little shade. It was either bright sunlight and the risk of burning or the cold deep shade from the tall warehouses. Come on Gloucester Council get your act together. I would have given anything for some dappled shade from a tree and my eyes would have liked something soft to focus on as a contrast to the hardness of the buildings and paving. If only someone would engage their brain or even better a landscaper!
For some ideas of good public planting check out the posts on Veg Plottings occasional series on public planting