Sunday, 24 March 2013

Wasted Resources of Empty Garages


I wonder if anyone is looking for a garage in Houghton Regis? 

Two years ago I was told in a Freedom of Information request that Central Bedfordshire Council owned  1,016 garages in Houghton Regis, of which 565 of them were boarded up, and apparently a waiting list of only 25.

Is that not an appalling waste of resources? The ones left derelict seem to attract vandalism, or graffiti,  or worse.

A garage is certainly a safer place for a vehicle, than being left out in the street for all and sundry to tamper with. It's not a great place to leave valuable items unless they are bolted down, or chained to the walls. And police are often repeating crime reduction warnings to make garages more secure, and to secure the contents left in a garage. 

I've heard the argument that most of the garages were built for smaller cars, and are not designed for modern vehicles. Well, I used to park a Mondeo Estate in my Council sized garage, so I don't buy that argument, but it I suppose it all depends on your driving skills. And some have been constructed in awkward corners.

Anyway, main point: Too many unused garages. The Council should draw up plans to re-use these sites, or else refurbish and re-let the garages. If no one really wants them, then the space should be re-utilised to make affordable homes for local residents.

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