LA / Stories

Occasionally, it is necessary to admit that Brockley does not have a monopoly on good ideas. Here are two, from the twin towns of LA and Charlton, that are worth thinking about importing.

Firstly, the Guardian reports that Los Angeles is removing parking spaces across the city and converting them into "parklets" - micro parks that are given over to a range of leisure activities.

In the land of valet parking, maybe kerbside parking spots are at less of a premium than SE4, but parklets could exist anywhere (the BXAG are trying to persuade Network Rail to let them take over the disused steps leading up to the higher-level of Brockley Station, to create a garden) and even if exercise bikes don't suit the British weather, gardeners could have some fun. Likewise, it would be great to create a spot in the centre of Brockley for Ping! London to install a table tennis table (especially given how well-used the one in Hilly Fields is).

Secondly, and less exotically, the people of Charlton have stopped debating whether a book-exchange would be a good idea and created one in Charlton Station. It's just a set of shelves where people can drop off or collect books. It's in the perfect spot, open nearly round the clock, and is handy for commuters. Our Charlton spy tells us the system works well and there's usually a good choice of books available.

Not that there is usually room to open a book on the ELL, but it's still an idea that could be made to happen instantly, if London Overground got on board.

What do you think?

12 comments:

kolp said...

There's already an informal book exchange in the C- Area. People leave them on walls.

Aricana said...

Both sound like good ideas to me.

would also love if we had a day, maybe during the Brockley Max festival, when residents are encouraged to leave things they no longer want outside their homes for others to take and re-use.

Anonymous said...

Except mattresses.

Anonymous said...

We leave stuff outside our place all the time, it usually goes fairly quickly. Also we have picked up lots of useful stuff from outside people's houses. A special day would be interesting though, like a freecycle January sale.

pip said...

Not sure we need a special day to leave stuff out, since it happens quite naturally anyway! I wouldn't go trawling round the streets, which is what you'd need to do - I'll leave that to the scrap metal scavengers!

The Hilly Fields Summer Fayre would be a better place to do it, as you could see everyone's junk in one place then. Though it is of course guaranteed to rain...

Croftylady said...

It's probably too late to get it going this year but I was thinking of getting something together to share out the annual fruit glut.
See www.abundancenetwork.org.uk
Thanks to the previous owners of our house we have lots of eating & cooking apples (and some years pears). I juice the eaters, and already have a house full of chutney and jelly (good for Christmas presents).
Is anyone else interested?

Myrtlle said...

Broca have a book exchange in their cafe. I love them.

mk said...

Both seem like great ideas. Why not put something in front of the recently-paved area outside Tickle Me takeaway? It's a tremendous waste of space at the moment.

Anonymous said...

was chatting to a lady from LA recently - couldn't understand why we don't have more drivethroughs - apparantly everytype of store has them - i.e chemists. Maybe they don't park in LA just keep driving?

Anonymous said...

Drive-throughs make sense when you have the enormous car parks and a hot climate. You don't want trekking across acres of tarmac in the hot sun. You want to stay in and benefit from the in-car air conditioning

Not so much an issue on this side of the pond.

Anonymous said...

They have drive through cash machines in the states too. It's not a bad thing, keeps people moving without extra fanning about. The trend is growing here, there are some drive through dry cleaners and 24 hour drive through fare can be had on the Old Kent Roac. It's easier for this reason to get KFC fare from the OKR branch than the one in Catford.

Credit crunch chick said...

Croftylady I would love some of your apples if they are still going spare (and your recipe for apple jelly)! Not sure how to arrange this...

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