Haymarket traders fume as road set to be fitted with £2.5 million drainage system floods in 24 hours

SWAMPED shopkeepers have hit out after their road flooded 24 hours after being told a new £2.5 million drainage system was ready to be unveiled.

By The Newsroom
Tuesday, 31st July 2018, 9:19 am
Updated Tuesday, 31st July 2018, 9:22 am

The Evening News reported last week how the new sewer in Haymarket Terrace was two months behind schedule.

Businesses were told on Friday work would be completed this week – only for drains to overflow in Saturday’s afternoon downpour.

But Scottish Water stressed their work had nothing to do with the flooding – and pointed the finger at the city council instead,

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Spokesperson Kim McBride (third left front row ) pictured with shop keepers and owners of retail outlets in Haymarket Terrace after their premises were flooded on Saturday because of blocked drains despite that road have been dug up and new drains installed. Picture Ian Rutherford

“I was serving someone in the shop and saw the rain coming down but didn’t pay that much attention,” said owner of Fleurs de Fleur florist, Amanda Ramsay, 45. “Then a taxi came through and I don’t think he realised how deep it was because the water came right up against my door.

“The taxis looked like they were floating on the water. Everybody was trying to jump over the water and one woman had fallen over – it was chaos.

“It wasn’t even raining for that long. Everybody is really angry after everything we’ve been through.”

Owner of recruitment firm Premier Connections, Katrina McBride, 65, told how business basements had flooded eight times in the last seven months.

“They’ve had the road up for ten or 11 months to correct this and nothing has been corrected. We’ve had no footfall, business has suffered.

“Somebody needs to step up and take notice of this. Nobody is actually taking the blame. There’s no compensation for anybody – it’s awful.”

Work began last September and was expected to take nine months and was devised to reduce the risk of flooding to businesses on Haymarket Terrace.

The new sewer forms part of a £29.5m water and wastewater infrastructure renewal programme across the Capital, with city council backing.

The project comprises of four main phases to install a new 1.2m diameter storm storage sewer pipe, starting on Haymarket Terrace at the junction with Magdala Crescent and moving east towards Haymarket Station.

It is understood Scottish Water dispatched workers on Saturday and have since met with businesses but there no reports of any sewer flooding.

A spokeswoman for Scottish Water said: “We are aware there was surface water flooding on Haymarket Terrace after heavy rainfall at the weekend. The flooding was not caused by the sewer upgrade work we have completed in the area. The surface water system is separate from the sewer network.”

A Council spokesperson said: “The extraordinary rainfall on Saturday led to a large number of call-outs to our flooding response team, however there were no reports about this surface water in Haymarket Terrace. Once the utility works there are off site, we’ll be able to access the area to look into the issue further, but until then it’s not possible to say categorically what caused the flooding.”

From next Monday Haymarket Terrace will re-open to two-way traffic and the diversion route will be removed.