Revised Edinburgh traffic plans 'still need public consultation'

Up to 1,000 people attended an open-air meeting on the proposals last monthUp to 1,000 people attended an open-air meeting on the proposals last month
Up to 1,000 people attended an open-air meeting on the proposals last month
A RAFT of changes have been made to the controversial proposals for Scotland's first Low Traffic Neighbourhood in East Craigs – but critics say a full public consultation is still needed before anything is implemented.

Up to 1,000 people attended an open-air meeting in Gyle Park last month where transport convener Lesley Mancinnes was booed and jeered as she defended proposed road closures and restrictions designed to prevent rat-running through residential streets.

She promised to look again at the scheme and a revised set of measures will now be discussed at tomorrow’s transport and environment committee.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

But Lib Dem transport spokesman Kevin Lang said: “The fact they have brought forward a significantly different scheme shows just how flawed the original proposals were. It is important to remember it took the best part of 1,000 people turning up to a public meeting in the middle of a pandemic to get the council to pay attention and make changes.

"But if the council is going to learn anything from the last few weeks, they need to run a proper consultation on the revised plans before anything is implemented. In 20 years of community politics in west Edinburgh, I’ve never seen anything like the level of anger and resentment that I have over this scheme. It’s not just what is being proposed, it’s the way it has been imposed on a community without proper consultation.

"If the council is going to repair the damage that has been done in terms of the relationship with the community there needs to be proper public consultation before anything is implemented.”

And Cllr Lang said the changes did not go far enough. “If you look at some of the biggest concerns that were raised, for example the concern about the junction of Craigs Road and Drum Brae South and how traffic would get out of Craigs Road, there’s nothing in the revised plans that responds to that. Similarly with the junctions coming off Glasgow Road. So while the number of physical closures has been reduced there are still a number of outstanding issues and real concerns in the community and that’s why nothing should be done until people have been given a chance to have their say.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Mark Brown, Tory councillor for Drumbrae/Gyle, said the he revised proposals did not offer a satisfactory solution.

"It’s more pie in the sky from the council if they think this is going to wash with the community. The new map of closures throws up more questions rather than offering the community answers. It’s tinkering about the edges, taking away a large number of barriers but created other obstacles for other residents in different parts. It needs full consultation with the community.”

But Green councillor Claire Miller said the proposed measures were common elsewhere.

”The kinds of measures set out, to reduce through traffic and increase safety for people walking and wheeling, are seen already in dozens of neighbourhoods throughout the city and have been happening for decades in response to concern about streets being used as rat runs. Residents there would now vigorously oppose attempts to remove them. So the label ‘Low Traffic Neighbourhood’ may be new but the concept certainly isn’t and I look forward to many more places enjoying the benefits they bring.”

A message from the Editor:

Thank you for reading this story on our website. While I have your attention, I also have an important request to make of you.

The dramatic events of 2020 are having a major impact on many of our advertisers - and consequently the revenue we receive. We are now more reliant than ever on you taking out a digital subscription to support our journalism.

Subscribe to the Edinburgh Evening News online and enjoy unlimited access to trusted, fact-checked news and sport from Edinburgh and the Lothians. Visit now to sign up.

By supporting us, we are able to support you in providing trusted, fact-checked content for this website.

Joy Yates

Editorial Director

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.