Comment: Government must help or it will get worse

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potholed streets and overcrowded schools are two of the biggest problems facing the Capital.

Anyone who drives a car or rides a bike will know what a pitiful state the city’s roads are in despite increased spending on them in recent years. Forget for a minute the growing pile of legal bills landing at the City Chambers for damage caused to cars by these craters and think what visitors must make of us. We are not a poor country, but it certainly looks like it when you drive through the city centre.

The lack of space in our schools is a big concern for parents as many children miss out on proper sports lessons and other opportunities as a result.

The £10 million extra which has been earmarked for tackling these problems is little more than a drop in the ocean. The city has an outstanding backlog of £260m worth of road repairs. The kids in our overcrowded schools will have finished their education and be paying taxes before it gets sorted.

Our city leaders are accused of many things but they are not blind to these facts. Their problem is that with more than £50m worth of cuts needed in the next two years they have precious few options.

Yet we cannot continue down the road we are going. These problems are only going to get worse.

Edinburgh is a popular place to live, and, as a result, we are being told by the Scottish Government to build tens of thousands of new homes. Okay, those homes are needed, but they will mean more traffic on our roads and more children needing to be taught. That will mean more potholes and more overcrowding.

It is obvious that the Capital needs help to rebuild its crumbling infrastructure. The city council cannot afford to do it on its own. Don’t forget more repairs are also needed to our ageing school buildings to keep them safe.

The Scottish Government must do its bit to ensure that this downward spiral does not continue.