‘Council caught between a rock and a hard place’

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NEVER mind getting up early to grab a sun lounger by the swimming pool, we may soon face another holiday ritual in the Capital – a scramble for an airport parking space.

The expected growth of Edinburgh Airport within the next eight years means bosses think they need space for another 2500 cars to keep up with demand, but the council is refusing to back their bid to build them.

There is plenty of time, of course, for the council to relent. And it may well do so should its intransigence start to look like it is harming the future development of the airport, which is a key contributor to the city’s economy.

But in the meantime where does that leave us?

Getting a parking space is likely to get considerably tougher, or more expensive, or both, in the coming years.

Catching a bus or a taxi – or even waiting for a tram – will start to seem more attractive. And that is of course just what city leaders are hoping more of us think.

No-one likes the feeling of being herded out of their car, and for some it is a serious inconvenience.

But this is one instance where the council is caught between a rock and a hard place.

Some forecasts suggest development in the west of the city, including thousands of desperately needed new homes, will quadruple the amount of traffic on the roads there within 20 years.

Coping with that will require a level of investment in the local infrastructure that the city alone cannot muster.

The Scottish Government is going to have to play its part in keeping the west of the city moving in order to protect Edinburgh’s position as the nation’s biggest wealth creator.

Otherwise we can all look forward to more bus rides . . . and long traffic jam-plagued ones at that.

Waddling off

IT’s the ideal time to p p p-pick up a penguin as Edinburgh Zoo urgently offloads two thirds of its famous colony while repair work to their pool is carried out.

Thankfully they have been found safe temporary accommodation and we hope to welcome (almost all) of them back to their revamped home after their holiday.

They may have been somewhat overshadowed by recent arrivals on Corstorphine Hill but the penguins are iconic for the city and remain a hugely important tourist attraction. After all, as great as they are, pandas don’t parade.