Back after a Break

Read more: Back after a Break

Cities - the Future

Going to go back to the beginning of the week which saw me on the 7.15 from Piccadilly down to Euston for the first meeting of the LGAs new City Regions Board, the first time the national body for local government will have had as part of its structures something looking specifically at our major urban areas.

Read more: Cities - the Future

Stuck in the Slow Lane

A couple of transport things. Spent a bit of time today looking at proposed improvements for cyclists on the City Centre to Prestwich cycle path. Actually we were mainly looking at the bottom of Cheetham Hill Road which I know intimately as it is my cycle route to and from the Town Hall. In many respects the improvements are not aimed at confident, regular commuter cyclists like me but at giving confidence to new cyclists or those returning to the bike after a long absence that the bike might be the answer for them - healthier, often quicker and definitely cheaper than other modes of transport ( except perhaps running ). The proposals will make a number of junctions on this busy route safer but there will also be some improvements that will benefit all road users.

Read more: Stuck in the Slow Lane

Colour and Chemistry

Two very contrasting experiences without leaving my ward boundaries yesterday. In the morning I went to Hexagon Tower in Blackley Village, a striking sixties-built 14 storey tower, once part of ICI's empire that covered a huge amount of the Irk Valley floor in Blackley. The first dye works at the site started in the eighteenth century growing until by 1961 14,000 people worked there. Now all gone apart from this one 200,000 sq.ft building comprising labs and office space. For the last few years it has operated as managed work space and it is 85% occupied, but yesterday was the official launch of Hexagon Tower becoming part of the BEST network of science parks, so North Manchester now has its very own vertical science park.

Read more: Colour and Chemistry