Time finally runs out on ghost car park.
SHAFTS of weak winter sunlight stream through the honeycombed hon·ey·comb
1. A structure of hexagonal, thin-walled cells constructed from beeswax by honeybees to hold honey and larvae.
2. Something resembling this structure in configuration or pattern.
tr.v. concrete wall.
It is the only illumination illumination, in art
illumination, in art, decoration of manuscripts and books with colored, gilded pictures, often referred to as miniatures (see miniature painting); historiated and decorated initials; and ornamental border designs. in the vast city centre building, empty save for the cooing pigeons.
The Bull Ring Car Park - hailed as the future of parking when it was opened in Birmingham in 1964 - lies as it was left three decades ago.
It has become little more than a reminder of how a brilliant idea can fail dismally when put into practice.
The trolleys which once pushed Ford Anglias The Ford Anglia was a British car from Ford in the UK. It was related to the Ford Prefect and the later Ford Popular. The Ford Anglia name was applied to four models of car between 1940 and 1967.
1,594,486 Anglias were produced, before it was replaced by the new Ford Escort. and Austin 1100s into vacant spots stand rusting rusting: see corrosion. in their rollers and the lines dividing parking bays have disappeared under pigeon pigeon, common name for members of the large family Columbidae, land birds, cosmopolitan in temperate and tropical regions, characterized by stout bodies, short necks, small heads, and thick, heavy plumage. and rat droppings.
This is likely to be the last time we shall ever see inside this vast concrete white elephant White Elephant
Any investment that nobody wants because it is unprofitable.
The term 'White Elephant' is derived from Thailand, where an Albino (white) elephant was given to unfavored people by the ruler. .
In a few months time, it will be razed raze also rase
tr.v. razed also rased, raz·ing also ras·ing, raz·es also ras·es
1. To level to the ground; demolish. See Synonyms at ruin.
2. To scrape or shave off.
3. to the ground as part of the Bull Ring's pounds 800 million redevelopment.
For more than 30 years it has stood empty. Many don't even know it is there, although the distinctive honeycombed wall will be as familiar to most in the city as the Bull Ring symbol itself.
Most will not miss it although, for some, its departure will be tinged with regret for something that could have blazed a trail for car parking across the world - if it had worked.
Gerry Rourke, the Bull Ring's estate director, has a soft spot for the icy-cold, crumbling four-storey building.
"It was brilliant idea and we will never see the likes of it again," he said.
"We are all very excited by the new Bull Ring project but I know I shall be sad to see this, along with the rest of the centre, go."
The Bull Ring, described as a "town within a city" when it was built. It was the first development of its kind in the world and was opened in a blaze on fire; burning with a flame; filled with, giving, or reflecting light; excited or exasperated.
See also: Blaze of glory in 1964.
One million square feet of shopping was housed on four acres in the heart of the city and proved to be hugely popular.
The car park, with room for 560 vehicles, was designed to offer shoppers a special touch when they drove to the centre.
Motorists left their car with a uniformed member of staff who would then drive it into a huge lift serving each of the four floors. It stopped at a level with spaces and the car would be driven out onto a trolley trolley: see streetcar. , then pushed to the nearest available space where it would be placed.
The scheme sounded simple enough, but designers had not accounted for the popularity of the centre and the time it would take to retrieve cars.
In reality, the mechanics of parking and returning so many cars on different levels proved impossible to handle and the building was closed in 1969.
It has never been used since.
"It was just too labour intensive," said Mr Rourke.
A building lying empty for more than 30 years seems such a waste of prime city centre space but there was little which could be done with it.
"After it closed, it could never be used for anything else because of its shape, the height of ceilings and so on," said Mr Rourke.
"In years to come, people will wonder what happened in the city during the 1960s, 70s and 80s because everything will be gone but Birmingham's motto is Forward and that couldn't be more apt."
The bulldozers are set to move in towards the end of the summer and the honeycombed wall will be no more.
In its place will stand a plush new Bull Ring with department stores This is a list of department stores. In the case of department store groups the location of the flagship store is given. This list does not include large specialist stores, which sometimes resemble department stores. , 100 shops and revamped markets which are expected to attract 22 million visitors from 2003 and create 8,000 jobs.
The hype surrounding the new development has echoes of that which heralded the original centre but surely this time there will be no repeat of the design disaster which is the Bull Ring car park.
Did you use the Bull Ring car park? What was your experience of it? Write to Talk About, Sunday Mercury Sunday Mercury is a Sunday newspaper published in Birmingham, UK. A tabloid, with a sensationalist streak, it is owned by Trinity Mirror and produced in the same newsroom as The Birmingham Post and The Evening Mail. References
1. , 28 Colmore Circus, Birmingham B4 6AZ.