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scott.wright

Union Terrace Gardens

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I like the gardens as they are, a break in the endless sea of people. I don't even mind if they stink of piss a bit where the old toilets were. If I don't like the flow of Union Terrace traffic, I can duck out of it and the guys sipping supers never bug me.

It's a nice space.

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Your help needed to save Peacock and Union Terrace Gardens

Dear all,

You may have already signed this and passed it on (thank you so much!!), but if not, we would really appreciate your help in getting the message out, as time is running out for us rapidly.

SAVE UNION TERRACE GARDENS AND ABERDEEN'S NEW CENTRE FOR CONTEMPORARY ART

Peacock has spent 10 years developing plans for a new home that will become one of Scotland's major cultural centres and have raised 9.5millon and gained full planning permission for the development. However, (and despite Aberdeen City Council being about to put in a bid to be UK city of culture) Peacock's plan for a new arts centre for Aberdeen is under threat.

Oil Magnate Sir Ian Wood recently announced a plan to create 8 acres of new real estate in the city centre, to create a large civic square and an underground car park.

In order to do this he needs to concrete over Union Terrace Gardens, the city centre's only public park and the site of the Peacock development. He expects Aberdeen City Council to help by handing over the land and for the public purse to provide at least 50 million to match his own contribution towards the development. If his plan goes ahead it will involve the felling around 100 trees and the loss of Peacock's planned new public arts centre.

Peacock's centre was designed to be sympathetic to Union Terrace Gardens by retaining its green space. As Sir Ian Wood's proposal involves filling in the Gardens in their entirety, they cannot co-exist.

Please help us to convince the City that the people do not want to lose the Gardens as a beautiful piece of our environmental heritage, and Peacock as a vital part of our cultural future.

Please sign the petition now and help build the pressure:

Save the new Contemporary Art Centre in Union Terrace Gardens Petition

To find out more about the Campaign and the public park that is under threat please visit: Funding Deadline for Arts Centre - Aberdeen's Centre for Contemporary Art. Gallery exhibitions, printmaking, photography, film & video, digital media

Thank you!

The Peacock team

buildingsideways500pix.jpg

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I'm not attempting to troll, I may be in the minority but I'm willing to listen to his proposal. Cities need to evolve and modernise with the times IMO and if it means losing a few crumbling relics then so be it. Nobody uses Union Terrace Gardens anyway, have you ever walked through there on a Saturday? There's a few junkies passed out, and some winos drinking Special Brew and that's it.

I pretty much made these same points in the Support Trump thread, minus the bit about the junkies.

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I'm not attempting to troll, I may be in the minority but I'm willing to listen to his proposal. Cities need to evolve and modernise with the times IMO and if it means losing a few crumbling relics then so be it. Nobody uses Union Terrace Gardens anyway, have you ever walked through there on a Saturday? There's a few junkies passed out, and some winos drinking Special Brew and that's it.

I pretty much made these same points in the Support Trump thread, minus the bit about the junkies.

I'd say that the Wood proposal, rather than evolving the city, is actually an ill thought out scheme (or they haven't done the spin very well, easily dissected by the Big Business says noooo thread). The veneer over the top is glossy and the money being put forward tempting, obviously, but the substance and motives behind the whole thing are shady. Like a lot of big organisation plans, they give you what they want to feed you, what they think will allow them to do what they want. Gradually they will reveal all and if you don't agree with the final results it's actually too late to do anything about it because everyone has already said yes. You think because they say its about evolving the city it's not going to make THEM massive amounts of money. We have to pay for this too, the "uncultured" people of this city. What an insulting prick inferring that the majority of the population of the city is uncultured. If it is the case to some degree it is entirely down to the fact there is no facility to provide it on a large enough scale!!!

Kind of went on a side track rant...

On the other hand we have the Peacock plan... simple and elegant. Enhancing an area of natural beauty and turning it into a more functional space. The concept of the place has been well thought out, somewhere to directly benefit the community. Nothing is hidden from us, they didn't reveal the full plan until most of the funding was in place, now it's all paid for. This plan doesn't steal more money away from those that need it most and its not going to cause the same huge amounts of disruption and polution as putting a patio over the top. It's an ecco friendly design too.

Sir Ian Wood should donate that money to some of the struggling facilities that the council cannot afford to help keep afloat any longer. That is true philanthropy.

I can't see why there is even a debate going on...

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I'd say that the Wood proposal, rather than evolving the city, is actually an ill thought out scheme (or they haven't done the spin very well, easily dissected by the Big Business says noooo thread). The veneer over the top is glossy and the money being put forward tempting, obviously, but the substance and motives behind the whole thing are shady. Like a lot of big organisation plans, they give you what they want to feed you, what they think will allow them to do what they want. Gradually they will reveal all and if you don't agree with the final results it's actually too late to do anything about it because everyone has already said yes. You think because they say its about evolving the city it's not going to make THEM massive amounts of money. We have to pay for this too, the "uncultured" people of this city. What an insulting prick inferring that the majority of the population of the city is uncultured. If it is the case to some degree it is entirely down to the fact there is no facility to provide it on a large enough scale!!!

Kind of went on a side track rant...

On the other hand we have the Peacock plan... simple and elegant. Enhancing an area of natural beauty and turning it into a more functional space. The concept of the place has been well thought out, somewhere to directly benefit the community. Nothing is hidden from us, they didn't reveal the full plan until most of the funding was in place, now it's all paid for. This plan doesn't steal more money away from those that need it most and its not going to cause the same huge amounts of disruption and polution as putting a patio over the top. It's an ecco friendly design too.

Sir Ian Wood should donate that money to some of the struggling facilities that the council cannot afford to help keep afloat any longer. That is true philanthropy.

I can't see why there is even a debate going on...

As I said I'm willing to listen to Ian Wood's proposal, I'm not saying I blindly support it, but I certainly don't want it thrown out on the back of it not being eco-friendly or destroying an area of natural beauty (BTW Union Terrace gardens - natural beauty? Really? "Thriving ecosystem"? Where?) As for the Peacock plans, I just don't think Aberdeen needs an arts centre, and it sounds like a waste of space and a waste of time to me, simple as that. I have no interest in it, and would rather hear what Ian Wood has to offer. It is, after all, a city centre and I would prefer to see a square with some cafes, restaurants, businesses, shops etc:

Options revealed in Sir Ian Woods vision for Union Terrace Gardens - Evening Express

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I'm not attempting to troll, I may be in the minority but I'm willing to listen to his proposal. Cities need to evolve and modernise with the times IMO and if it means losing a few crumbling relics then so be it. Nobody uses Union Terrace Gardens anyway, have you ever walked through there on a Saturday? There's a few junkies passed out, and some winos drinking Special Brew and that's it.

I pretty much made these same points in the Support Trump thread, minus the bit about the junkies.

Fair enough, it just seemed very bridge-dweller in nature and I apologise for the assumption.

:up:

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Fair enough, it just seemed very bridge-dweller in nature and I apologise for the assumption.

:up:

No worries man. I did think when I posted it that it seemed a bit trolly. I guess I could have explained myself in that initial post, or just simply kept my trap shut :up:

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Regarding listening to Ian Wood's proposals...

If you want you CAN see the full details for Ian Wood's proposal right now at Welcome to the ACSEF website

You will notice that his scheme lacks any content. It essentially is 140million+ of infrastructure that has nothing in it. (except for new underground real estate for shopping? car parks?)

Sir Ian's scheme and various incarnations of it have been thrown out on 3 occasions by the National Lottery for their 'lack of vision'. On the other hand on its first attempt the Lottery Committee provided 4.3million for Peacock's plan because it had a clear cultural vision and could demonstrate a wide range of benefits to the region, cultural, social AND economic.

Even if you don't think that Aberdeen 'needs' an arts centre it's difficult to dismiss the advantages that similar centres like the DCA in Dundee have given to their cities.

Even if you ignore all the cultural benefits for local people and artists - in hard cash the DCA brings in 6 million per year to the local economy. It is hard to imagine a 'civic square' being anything other than a revenue drain on the city, that will cost rather than benefit tax payers. P

We have a bird in hand at the moment in the form of the Peacock scheme that could start to deliver for our city immediately. Why throw it away for a completely speculative scheme that goes against all current thinking in urban realm planning and is unlikely to ever happen cause of the enormous funding gap?

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Nobody uses Union Terrace Gardens anyway, have you ever walked through there on a Saturday?

Have you ever walked through on a warm summer's day? You can hardly move for people lying around enjoying the sun, reading, playing frisbee, eating lunch. That the garden's aren't used is just a lie Ian Wood and the EE are putting about just to pave the way for the garden's removal. It's easy to send a photographer round at 8am on a dreich weekday morning and take a photo of the empty gardens with just a solitary tramp in them.

The only thing stopping the gardens being used more often is the council's imagination, not the public.

I once went to the international market on Union Terrace and bought some paella for lunch. Though it would be nice to eat it in the gardens but when I tried to get down there the gate was shut and locked. On a Saturday afternoon, when the street was full of people with food to eat but nowhere to sit and eat it. Brilliant planning by the council there.

The ice rink at Christmas a few years ago was a great idea and there have been ceilidh's and other one off events held with success in the gardens. Why can't we have more of that?

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Have you ever walked through on a warm summer's day? You can hardly move for people lying around enjoying the sun, reading, playing frisbee, eating lunch. That the garden's aren't used is just a lie Ian Wood and the EE are putting about just to pave the way for the garden's removal. It's easy to send a photographer round at 8am on a dreich weekday morning and take a photo of the empty gardens with just a solitary tramp in them.

The only thing stopping the gardens being used more often is the council's imagination, not the public.

I once went to the international market on Union Terrace and bought some paella for lunch. Though it would be nice to eat it in the gardens but when I tried to get down there the gate was shut and locked. On a Saturday afternoon, when the street was full of people with food to eat but nowhere to sit and eat it. Brilliant planning by the council there.

The ice rink at Christmas a few years ago was a great idea and there have been ceilidh's and other one off events held with success in the gardens. Why can't we have more of that?

Well exactly, why can't we have more of that? The park simply isn't used, when was the last time there was a celidh or an open air concert down there? Maybe once a year at Christmas. An ice rink was a great success, but that was a few years ago. So why hasn't it been repeated? As for the park being full of sun-worshippers, how often does that happen? One month out of the year? Two at a push. If the gardens were being used to their potential then I would be all for keeping them as they are, but they aren't, they aren't used for anything except winos and junkies bedding down under the arches. The smell of piss and empty Buckfast bottles don't really say "welcome to Aberdeen".

I saw that thing in the Evening this week as well - "We sent a photographer down to Union Terrace gardens this Saturday at noon and there was no-one there. Why is no-one using our Gardens?". The obvious answer being "cos it's November and it's fucking 2 degrees outside, and it's raining".

As you yourself once stated, "Spin, it's all just words, spin, don't believe what you've heard..." 8-)

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As you yourself once stated, "Spin, it's all just words, spin, don't believe what you've heard..." 8-)

Nah, I think that was one of Marcus' lyrics. Well remembered though, one of our few songs that stands up to the test of time I think.

Making good use of the gardens as they are now would be a lot cheaper for the council than ploughing in the millions and millions of pounds that Wood's bizarre scheme requires.

He can always build his vanity car park on the site of St Nicholas house, I hear it's struggling to find a buyer now.

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Are they selling it with that eyesore building included, or are they paying to have it demolished and then just selling the groud it stood on? I just assumed that the Bon Accord centre were going to buy it.

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I seem to recall the Evening Express kicked up a big fuss about the ice rink because it cost a lot of money.

And I can remember when they used to have the New Year concerts down there, a good friend of mine got scarred for life in 1995 after somebody chucked a glass bottle from one of the higher leves into the crowd, so maybe they stopped them for safety reasons.

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They're not interested according to the EE, who of course blamed it on the council.

Apparently an independant survey has deemed the site has negative value due to the cost of removing the deep foundations of St Nicholas house or something like that. Too busy just now to look it up properly.

Instead I'll repost a link to Dave's blog about UTG and how often they're used:

I heart Union Terrace Gardens « David Officer Photography

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What do you mean the city doesn't need an arts centre!! That is crazy talk. Do you not consider yourself playing music in a group as part of the culture of Aberdeen? What about the people who organise the shows that you perform at? An arts centre for the community would be a great centralisation of all the energies that people put into what they are doing. I would definitely work through/with a set up like that for the majority of my activities. It would help people work together to bring more interesting art and music to this place.

We need an arts centre more than a bunch of shops and cafes and parking. Do we not want fewer cars in the city centre anyway? Why make more and more space for them? Space that had already been earmarked for something exciting and new.

I'm pretty sure there was talk of potential further development of the garden once the centre was built. I'm sure they could include some interesting shops/market style type thing for local business to sell their wares on a permanent basis rather than just the last Saturday of the month or whatever it is. Development of local business is what our area needs to survive, not further influx of big shops that just sell up and leave when times are hard. You can be guaranteed that a corporate development like the union terrace patio would only cater for this type of business, yet another Next and a Gap, maybe Apple Store 2, a couple of Starbucks all that combined with vast nothingness perhaps some escalators down to the parking area.

I will feel let down if we don't get our arts centre. Why should I put my heart, soul and money on the line to make this a more cultured place to exist in and then get shat on because some old guy with lots of money wants to leave his mark on a town that he hasn't been bothered to help out up until now.

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Well exactly, why can't we have more of that? The park simply isn't used, when was the last time there was a celidh or an open air concert down there? Maybe once a year at Christmas. An ice rink was a great success, but that was a few years ago. So why hasn't it been repeated? As for the park being full of sun-worshippers, how often does that happen? One month out of the year? Two at a push. If the gardens were being used to their potential then I would be all for keeping them as they are, but they aren't, they aren't used for anything except winos and junkies bedding down under the arches. The smell of piss and empty Buckfast bottles don't really say "welcome to Aberdeen".

I saw that thing in the Evening this week as well - "We sent a photographer down to Union Terrace gardens this Saturday at noon and there was no-one there. Why is no-one using our Gardens?". The obvious answer being "cos it's November and it's fucking 2 degrees outside, and it's raining".

As you yourself once stated, "Spin, it's all just words, spin, don't believe what you've heard..." 8-)

Anyway I just go to Duthie Park instead, it's miles better.

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