Edinburgh’s Waverley Bridge set to be re-opened to buses after four years of pedestrianisation

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Edinburgh city centre road set to re-open to buses

Edinburgh’s Waverley Bridge is to set to be re-opened to buses after four years of being largely pedestrianised during the Covid pandemic.

The council will allow airport buses to return to the bridge during Jenners’ redevelopment, relocating services from their current city centre stop on South St David Street by the former department store and soon-to-be hotel. However it said the move would only be “short term”.

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The throughfare became largely pedestrianised in 2020 in response to Covid restrictions, with the Princes Street junction completely shut to vehicles access for taxis maintained at the Market Street end.

An update shared by transport convener Scott Arthur confirmed a new traffic order, which would be in place for up to two years, would create a ‘bus gate’, reopening the bridge for the airport bus services provided by Lothian and McGill’s buses.

Waverley Bridge in Edinburgh city centre is set to be re-opened to buses.Waverley Bridge in Edinburgh city centre is set to be re-opened to buses.
Waverley Bridge in Edinburgh city centre is set to be re-opened to buses. | Ian Georgeson

It said: “Bus operators are aware of this change, and they are in the process of applying to the Traffic Commissioner for permission to amend their services for this period.

“Bus operators understand that the re-opening of Waverley Bridge is a short-term measure, and that the expectation is that they will return to their current stops once the work at Jenners is complete.

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“No other traffic will be permitted to access Princes Street from Waverley Bridge.

“The Placemaking, Events and Public Safety teams have been consulted about this change to ensure that we can safely facilitate pedestrians, cyclists and maintain the functionality of the area for the summer and winter festival periods.

“The new design will incorporate footway widenings at the north and south pedestrian accesses to Princes Street Gardens, bus access points and the flexibility to install hostile vehicle mitigation apparatus when required. The design for the new layout is still being progressed but once ready, will be circulated.”

The changes will come into effect from Monday, June 24.

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