Like Schouwburgplein in Rotterdam, Exchange Square is known as an "event space." The problem is that it only works when events are taking place. Its fancy paving, sweeping design statements and hidden water feature dress the square up, but leave the user with no place to go. Over-designed, inflexible, and dominated by rows of awkward sitwalls that impede pedestrian flow and gathering, this square should be exchanged for a place that actually displays a rudimentaty understanding of how people use public space. It masquerades as a civic square, but actually prevents this space from really evolving to celebrate the true richness and diversity of Manchester.So it was no surprise that CABE strongly supported the construction of a hideous and massive Tesco store in the heart of one of Suffolk's most congruent little market towns, praising it's bullying and domineering design. CABE hate anything like a 600-year old high street that has grown organically, and without the intervention of some fashionable Hamburg architect.
Well, both Tesco and CABE can now eat dirt. Planning consent for the Tesco invasion has been refused. Hadleigh is breathing a sigh of relief today, and another nail has just been driven in the coffin of these useless metrolingual design aesthetes.