Barriers to be installed at notorious Edinburgh steps after drivers get stuck

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A delivery van was the latest to become trapped at the top of the steps.

A barrier is to be installed at the top of a notorious street that has seen drivers get trapped attempting to drive down a set of steps.

It comes after a van driver found themselves stuck on the steps leading to Greenside Lane, next to the Theatre Royal bar on Monday, making them the fourth person get trapped in the notorious spot in a matter of weeks.

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Several incidents have been reported at the spot with drivers apparently being directed by Google Maps across a cycle lane and the pavement and then down the pedestrian steps to access Greenside Lane, despite signs making it clear that it's not an access point.

The stairs were installed in October 2023 to block access to road traffic following the redesign of Picardy Place.

But mapping software failed to reflect the updated road layout on Greenside Lane, near the city's Theatre Royal bar, after the stairs were completed last year.

Photos of stranded motorists have been widely shared on social media. It's understood that Google maps has updated but Apple maps is still in the process.

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A barricade is expected to be in place this week. Edinburgh council has been contacted for comment.

Councillor Scott Arthur, Transport and Environment Convener, said: “The footpath in this area is incredibly busy, so these incidents are really concerning. While we would expect drivers to use common sense in a situation like this, we are going to install temporary barriers this week to prevent it happening again.

“Greenside Lane was originally blocked off to traffic some time ago and steps installed as part of Trams to Newhaven. This is in compliance with the Edinburgh Street Design Guidance and similar to other set-ups across the city, such as on the Lawnmarket.

“No issues were raised as part of the Road Safety Audit for the project and Google Maps was recently updated to reflect the new layout and a request for a correction has been sent to Apple Maps.

“Sat Nav is an incredibly useful tool, but it’s no substitute for common sense. Cars and trucks don’t go down steps.”

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