Sunday, October 09, 2011

Southport Ditch

For a place that is less than three square miles in total area, the amount of traffic in Gibraltar is, at times, unbelievable.
Being a city it suffers from the usual city syndrome with everyone rushing to work in their car, dropping off the kids on the school run by car (often a 4x4), and doing the supermarket run - by car of course. Not to mention all the people who come in from Spain in their car.

This, in spite of the regular and free bus services that cover most of the Rock.

And while a lot of the newer buildings have car parking underneath, many of us live in older blocks and have to find a space where we can. It doesn't take a Nobel Prize winner to work out that when there are blocks of flats on each side of the street, and only parking on one side of the narrow streets, there aren't going to be enough spaces for all the flat dwellers to park their vehicle outside their home.

But there are free car parks within about ten minutes walk, and that's where most of us who live in town park. Spaces are usually available early morning and evenings - but during the day, it can involve driving around the car park endlessly or just sitting and waiting for someone to leave.

Earlier this year we noticed a flurry of activity going on at the old Public Works Department down Ragged Staff Road. It was being demolished big time.

The Gib rumour machine swung into action. Yet more expensive apartment buildings. A car park. We asked someone who works at one of the car parks but they didn't know anything about it.

But the car park rumour was right. It seems Gib is moving into pay and display car parks with maximum lengths of stay. So it's obviously aimed at tourists and cross-border workers.

It's not open yet, so I took some pix before it gets full of cars. The dark ones were taken on normal setting and reflect the actual lighting at the time, and lighter ones were on a night time setting and compensate for the dark by lightening up the pix.

I think the Gib goverment makes some pretty crap decisions regarding development in a lot of cases, and I find a lot of the new build ugly beyond belief and totally out of proportion for such a tiny place. But I think they have made a tidy job of this car park and I love the restoration work on the old tunnel. My first fears were that they would be knocking it down, but I see a new information sign has been placed at the top of the pedestrian stairs telling us all about Southport Ditch. Of which more later when I have chance to read it.

1 comment:

Ashleigh said...

Hey there,

We finally were able to visit the Gib this past Sunday and we parked on the Spanish side and walked across then used the bus and walked some more. We loved it. It really exceeded our expectations...It really is a neat little place. I enjoyed your facts post a couple of weeks ago and was pulling info out from it on our day trip and greatly impressing my family...hahaha...I can't wait to blog about it and see what you think about my take on your place!