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Duany puts some welly into Lochgelly

March 17 2010

Duany puts some welly into Lochgelly
The “Scottish mining town they forgot to shut down”, Lochgelly, played host to American urbanist Andres Duany of Duany Plater-Zyberk & Company on his whistle-stop tour of UK trouble spots in an effort to engage directly with local people to translate ideas into plans and drawings.

So what did Duany make of his cross Atlantic jaunt? Could our towns be more like Seaside, or are they still all at sea? Urban Realm caught up with Duany to find out.

Much of Lochgelly’s mooted expansion is set to take place on Greenfield land leading some to question an apparent contradiction in terming such development ‘sustainable’, Duany retorted: “It’s completely sustainable. First of all don’t tell me this ridiculous lie that we’re running out of land in this country, that is a fiction.

"I’ve flown all over, you’re full of green land and most of your fields aren’t even greenbelt. The only thing that is sustainable is if you can walk to things. Everyone’s moaning about Greenfield but not properly contesting if it’s walkable, it’s palpably ridiculous, look at the map. This is the most developed part of Scotland and look at the amount of green land… you’re not running out.

"Suds is another imported superstition, it you think that a scheme is ecological because it has good suds, think again. It might be in Saudi Arabia but here it doesn’t matter. You’re full of water.”

A summary of the weeks findings can be read on the official charette site.


Despairing ecoworrier
#1 Posted by Despairing ecoworrier on 17 Mar 2010 at 10:52 AM
Why is the man being flown in at great expense and listened to, while people in Scotland who could do the job (and talk with as much, if not greater, knowledge) are being sidelined?
'Most of your fields aren't even greenbelt'. Well no, possibly he could find out what greenbelt means, but they are good farmland, and simply not being greenbelt doesn't mean it's fair game.
There's more to sustainable communities than simply walkability, and more to regeneration than Duany.
Dave Anderson
#2 Posted by Dave Anderson on 17 Mar 2010 at 12:03 PM
We import an a American to Scotland (Duany) and export a Scot to America (Alan D)?
Roger Emmerson
#3 Posted by Roger Emmerson on 17 Mar 2010 at 13:13 PM
Sometimes blind ignorance can be inspired, sometimes it's just that: blind ignorance.
Despairing ecoworrier
#4 Posted by Despairing ecoworrier on 17 Mar 2010 at 13:21 PM
Duany has no understanding of the specific problems; it's a one size fits all scenario he preaches. He's paid (presumably well) to do a job and the Scottish government, which has little idea, hopes he has stardust to sprinkle. He hasn't. Why is the government not seeking out good people involved already in this sort of work in Scotland and using them?
His mantra of 'we have plenty of green space so build on it, it's not protected' is a dangerous one.
#5 Posted by Anon on 17 Mar 2010 at 14:11 PM
"I’ve flown all over.... The only thing that is sustainable is if you can walk to things..." Oh the irony!
#6 Posted by Iain on 17 Mar 2010 at 14:37 PM
What a charlatan. Does he not recognise that we might want to keep fields green, redevelop the mighty swathes of brownfield land and support failing town centres?

Why don't we reciprocate by sending Edinburgh City Council to the US to tell them how to build urban transport infrastructure?
#7 Posted by coling on 18 Mar 2010 at 18:40 PM
Lochgelly has been projected to grow by 1,700 or so dwelling units by 2026. I saw the proposals and thought that the team sensitively balanced the need for growing both the edges -and- the core of Lochgelly, whilst determining the final urban growth boundary that would preserve green areas and regional open space.
#8 Posted by Anon on 18 Mar 2010 at 23:45 PM
The plans are based on plans created by Fife Council several years ago The Mid Fife Structure plan. A large part of the Lochgelly community have been voting and filling in survey forms in support of a petrol station and supermarket, which will be located at the edge of the town and will be of benfit to the surrounding towns, yet Fife Council and Andres DUany have ignored this and are steam rolling their plan ahead, regardless of what the public are wanting.

All Andres Duany has managed to do is show Fife Council how to polish a turd......
#9 Posted by Rob on 19 Mar 2010 at 10:14 AM
Where are all the people to come from to populate this huge swathe of new building which is happening all over Scotland, building on so many greenfield sites? Where will they work? Yes, Duany has his own 'one size fits all 'agenda to push. Seaside is hardly a model to follow.

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