Road sign in Edinburgh's Leith Walk to be investigated by council after residents' safety fears
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A new road sign which has been installed in the middle of a busy pavement in Edinburgh is to be investigated after it was branded dangerous and “beyond a joke”.
The signpost on Great Junction Street, near the foot of Leith Walk, was put up by contractors ahead of the Trams to Newhaven route opening, which is expected in June. It follows completion of all major trams construction works. The move has sparked safety fears from local residents, who said wheelchair users and people with prams may be forced to walk on the road to avoid it.
One mum from Leith, who didn’t want to be named, said: “Getting along Great Junction Street with a buggy is always tricky. It gets busy along that bit. Now it’s beyond a joke. They obviously haven’t considered pedestrians before they shoved a big sign in the middle of a mobbed pavement. It’s way too narrow now. I’ve seen people getting fed up trying to get through and just going out onto the road. And it’s near a bus stop so it’s dangerous. It needs to be moved.”
Edinburgh council has now confirmed it will investigate the sign’s position, after calls by Leith councillor Chas Booth for it to be removed. The Green councillor said: “I’m extremely concerned that this sign is further restricting an already narrow and very busy stretch of footway. This will have an impact on all pedestrians, but particularly on wheelchair users and people with buggies. Something seems to have gone badly wrong here, so I’ve asked council officers to explain why it has been installed, to clarify what assessment was carried out on the impact on pedestrians and disabled people in particular, and to give a timetable for its removal.”
Councillor Scott Arthur, transport and environment convener, said: “I'm aware of the situation on Great Junction Street, and would agree that it does not appear to meet standards we would normally expect. The situation is being investigated.” Edinburgh Trams have been contacted for comment.