Letter: Mall madness

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The Independent Culture
Sir: Mick Hucknell, quoted in your feature "The mall that ate Manchester" (2 September), is absolutely right to describe the Trafford Centre as "the supremacy of Mammon and bad taste." But it was not a planning error as stated.

The building of this appalling monstrosity was a government decision taken against the views of most professional town planners - a decision that was finally passed on a judicial appeal in the House of Lords.

I have said on record (and continue to believe) that its impact on surrounding town centres, and on increased traffic congestion, will be more disastrous than we can contemplate.

Whilst short-term profits for the centre's retailers may increase, the long-term effects on the country's commerce and environment will be damaging.

Yes, this mall and others like it do predate the "new thinking about out-of-town shopping". The Government now agrees that we should not all be spending our time sitting on crowded, fume-ridden motorways or under mammoth, sterile domes, sealed off from the environment and reality.

Now is the time to pull down the grotesque Goliath of the Trafford Centre, before it is too late.

TREVOR ROBERTS

President

The Royal Town Planning Institute

London W1

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