Edgbaston Cricket Ground

Most of the controversy about the planned expansion of Edgbaston Cricket Ground has related to the floodlights. Labour MP Roger Godsiff and Respect Councillor Salma Yaqoob have been particularly outspoken.

However, what about the impact of traffic on local residents? Balsall Heath dweller and podcast supremo Nick Booth filmed a mini-documentary highlighting the impact of a cricket match on the residential streets of Balsall Heath:

"It can be a right pain living near Edgbaston cricket ground. Because the club doesn't take repsonsibility for making sure there is enough good parking for people then the people living around the ground have to bear that responsibility instead. It means gridlock and frustration - all for a gentleman's game. How odd!"

Plans for the proposed Birmingham Aquatics and Leisure Centre include provision for parking within the NIA complex and proposals for a residents permit scheme on a nearby housing estate.

I don't know the cricket ground area particularly well, but I assume from Nick's video that there is no such permit scheme in place. The issue with implementing one would be the alternative parking arrangements. Perhaps the solution lies in a park-and-ride scheme from say Star City, or somewhere on the 45/47 bus route?


Electric Cars For Birmingham?

Birmingham & Solihull Mental Health Trust and Aston University are taking part in an electric car trial on the streets of Birmingham. Both are trialling a number of 2-seater Smart Cars, modified to charge using a standard 3-pin electric socket.

This could prove a great solution for company car fleet owners and for city dwellers who need to potter around an urban area. But they’re not a great deal of use beyond that, with a limited mileage of 70 miles between charges.

Of course the argument is for longer journeys you can use a combination of public transport and park and ride facilities, but that's not yet feasible nationwide.

But it is a huge step in the right direction and a positive outcome of this trial could see the streets of Birmingham filled with small electric cars sooner than you think.

Now if only they looked better…