Monday, 1 April 2013

Accepting the the malcontents' mantle

For as long as any of us can remember, the phrase 'whinging poms' has been used to describe the English. However according to a recent editorial on the Guardian website, 'it's time for Australians to accept the malcontents' mantle'.

Yay. Here goes.

On the corner of Regency Road and Main North Road is Northpark Shopping Centre. On the opposite side of Main North Road at the same intersection is Regency Plaza, which contains a Woolworths, a Cheap As Chips, a bread shop, a cafe and a pub complete with pokies room. It is all surrounded by a car park the size of a high school which also serves Sefton Plaza just to the south. Here's an aerial shot:

The council provides a community bus for pensioners and others who do not have access to a car. It is run by a part-time coordinator who is then assisted by volunteers.

It runs a few services including a shopping run to Northpark and Sefton Plaza each week. You just telephone the designated number to book your seat. The catchment area served by the bus is quite small but non-motorised forms of transport are difficult to use because of the many physical barriers in the way. Hence the need for the bus.

At Regency Plaza, there is a stop set aside for the bus. You can see its two little shelters in the aerial shot above. It is just to the right of the building marked 'Woolworths Regency Plaza' and next to the green car.

Here it is:

You can see that despite the provision of a carpark the size of a football field, people are still that arrogant that they park their crappy cars where the bus should go. If there was any confusion, you'd think this might resolve it:

I can't quite see why people insist on parking there. I can only assume it is because the shelters provide a bit of shade. Not sure it makes a difference given that most shoppers pop in an out quickly and use the Woolworths as their corner shop - because all of the corner shops have been put out of business.

The most tragic part of all of this is that the big destination that the bus goes to is this:

A beige box with a large Woolworths sign. Although this picture looks like the arse end of the building where the bins are kept, you'll see in the distance that it is actually the entrance. Just to the right of the entrance is the community bus stop. It is one of the most drab and depressing buildings I know. How it got past the planning committee still amazes me to this day.

In case you were wondering, the two cars are a Mazda 3 with registration S674AVV and a Mitsubishi ute with registration S841ASG. Sunday, 24 March at 1.15pm..

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