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"Use every man after his desert, and who should 'scape whipping?"

Friday, 21 February 2014

Bad idea George - London has more than enough malls already

So George Osborne wants Euston station to undergo "full-scale redevelopment" and as far as he is concerned, that means including a big shopping mall.

A bit like the ones 300 years down the road at the new King's Cross St Pancras perhaps?

Why is it that any new development in this city of shopkeepers has to be underpinned by retailers?

Why - because they are the  only things that seem to be capable of turning a profit. Yet, when the great London termini were built, the only shops allowed would be a branch of Smiths, and a tea shop. Travellers need things to read, they need drinks, they need good, cheap food, maybe a chemist, and above all good, clean,  free toilet facilities, and somewhere to leave luggage.

Another mall? How many does a city need? Why not build a club or theatre , with a stage for comedians  and buskers to entertain  delayed travellers? Or,  and if they have more time on their hands, perhaps a new version of the old 24-hour news cinemas might work.

Meanwhile, some of the oldest and best-value Indian restaurants in London - two minutes away from Euston, in Drummond Street - are now under threat because of the HS2 plans.

WHat a hideous irony it would be if somewhere like the Diwana Bhel-poori house was to be swept away to allow more branches of Next and Giraffe and all those other ghastly mall-wwellers to set up shop in NW1.

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