Readers discuss alternative uses for Dolphin Square as a result of housing delay
PUBLISHED: 16:00 19 January 2020
Readers discussed uses for Dolphin Square after it was revealed North Somerset Council were considering other options for the site amidst a potential five year delay to their current housing plans.
The authority and Homes England are planning to build 180 flats on the site, which is next to the leisure complex.
Plans have been unable to progress due to a large sub-station which 'severely constrains development' and will cost around £2million to relocate if a suitable site can be found.
While permanent options for development are progressing, the council is exploring the possibility of using the site for other purposes, including a cycle hub.
A report to the council's strategic planning and economic development and regeneration policy and scrutiny panel states: "The purpose of the project is to deliver innovative and interesting use of the space which complements existing town centre uses and links to emerging council priorities around culture, climate emergency, local economic growth and economic inclusion."
The council has revealed the site could be used for a number of different purposes if they encourage economic inclusion - particularly for families from deprived wards - if the town centre is thriving, and as long as Weston starts to be a year-round visitor destination.
Many took to social media to share their views.
Ian Baker said: "If nothing is going to be built on it until the end of time then turn it into a little park area with trees and grass and that.
"It'll help offset the loss of greenery from all the paving slabs being slapped over Princess Royal Square and the Town Square."
Joan Dunne commented: "Dolphin Square market should never have been closed it was so popular with tourists and locals alike and of course we then lost the very popular bowling alley.
"It hasn't been a success as it is I just wish the indoor market could be reinstated.
"Oh how we all loved to shop there for a bargain."
Julian Oliver mused: "Cycle hub, I like it. It will never happen though, like everything in Weston.
"There were plans for a cycle hub after the Brean-Weston cycle path was done on the seafront area,
"It was going to be on the seafront area where the old grass fun golf park and little steam train used to be. Dolphin square market should never have been closed, but it's gone just like the Tropicana, Italian Gardens, and Weston land train."
Graham Morrissey asked: "Why do they need to move the substation?
"They could either revise the design of the new build, which will certainly be less than £2million, or incorporate the substation into the building. It's not rocket science."
Beverley Eastell added: "I believe creating a green space here would be much better much cheaper, make the whole area more pleasant. Which in turn would lead to people wanting to be there, boosting business and regeneration or development of the existing buildings all around.
"One-hundred-and-twenty flats, where are all those extra cars going, where are these people going for doctors, A and E or school?
"Wake up Weston."
Alison Dew suggested: How about an outdoor cinema in the summer, or a big screen showing rugby, tennis and other events.
"They do this is Bristol, Birmingham, Cardiff and Southampton and it's a massive crowd puller."