Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Milton Keynes – A second look

Another walk across Milton Keynes today.  The objective was to visit B&Q and PC World, both of which were on the ‘other side’ of the town.  It was a grey day with a cold wind and drizzly rain.  I suspect if the temperature had dropped slightly we might have experienced snow.

Today I was looking for some interesting local architecture.  First I must mention theXscape building.  Yesterday I wrote about the view of the western end.  Today I took photos of the eastern view.  From a distance you might be excused for thinking its an artificial hill.

Hill on the skyline

OK, it’s a building.  Actually it’s the second highest building in MK

From the noise, I suspect these are the cooling towers for the ice/snow machine.

A second interesting building was this one seen in the distance

After walking through the suburbs which all looked the same being laid out in a grid pattern and consisting of terraced homes I was surprised to see a section of terraced houses laid out in a half circle.  I wonder who decided to be the urban design non conformist?

What I like about Milton Keynes is the effort that has gone into ensuring pedestrians and vehicles are separated.  During my walk across the town I never had to cross a road.  The elimination of pedestrian crossings must keep the traffic flowing.

The main streets are dual carriageway with a secondary service road running parallel on either side.  This avoids congestion on the main roads.

Being a new town it was obviously designed to incorporate vehicles.

Whilst walking down one of the service roads I happened to notice a row of car charging pods.

I haven’t seen anything like this in Australia or New Zealand.  Perhaps I haven’t been looking?

Now for what I don’t like.  The buildings!  They are all so bland.  Many of them are just steel framed boxes clad in glass.  The main shopping mall is the most obvious example.

It’s just a large rectangular building with no character.

It was a late lunch by the time I returned to Waiouru.  Jan had baked a lemon cake in my absence which meant I was forced to do some tasting. Smile

I’d have to say that for me the negatives of MK outweigh the positives.  But then one of the major reasons in coming to the UK was to see history and character.


Judith Emery said...

If you're driving through Milton Keynes it can be a nightmare as it is badly signposted. We've done it many times going north to south and vice versa and never the same way twice as all of a sudden the signs to where you want to go disappear. We've moored a few times on the Campbell Park moorings, nice and quiet.
Judith and John
nb Serena.

Tom and Jan said...

We were focussed on getting beyond the stoppage Judith. I'll have a look for Cambell Park but it's probably on the wrong side of the stoppage. We passed a park on the off side with moorings but they were totally full.