NEW speed limit signs are being installed as the city centre prepares to become a 20mph zone this summer.
Around 80 per cent of city roads will be affected by the new limit under radical proposals given the go-ahead by councillors last year.
Edinburgh’s taking a hugely positive step in embracing slower speeds across so much of our city and we know that other cities in Scotland are keen to learn from our example.Lesley Hinds
Phase one will affect the city centre and the “rural west” – South Queensferry, Kirkliston, Ratho, Currie and Balerno – when the new speed limit comes into force on July 31.
Large signs will mark the entrance and exit of a 20mph area, with smaller signs and road markings dotted along affected streets.
Signage, road markings, monitoring and awareness campaigns have been projected to cost £465,000 in the first year of the scheme, with the bill being shared between the city council and the Scottish Government.
Transport leader Councillor Lesley Hinds said: “Edinburgh’s taking a hugely positive step in embracing slower speeds across so much of our city and we know that other cities in Scotland are keen to learn from our example.
“People will start to spot new 20mph signs around the city centre and rural west Edinburgh over the coming weeks as we get ready for the first phase of the 20mph roll-out to go live on July 31.
“We’ll also be widely publicising the move to 20mph so that residents and visitors to the city will know where it applies.”
The scheme was deemed controversial when it was first drawn up – with more than 6000 people liking the Say No to 20mph page on Facebook and upwards of 2700 signing a petition calling for the decision to be reversed.
But despite this early backlash, the council’s city-wide consultation on the issue received only 86 responses.
Of these, 54 were objections – with only 27 indicating they supported the plans.
The Ready for 20 Scotland Conference will be held by 20’s Plenty for Us at the City Chambers next Wednesday.
Rod King MBE, founder and campaign director for 20’s Plenty for Us, said: “A 20mph limit for most roads is becoming the norm for the UK’s iconic cities and it is good to see Edinburgh following the likes of Oxford, Cambridge, Bristol, Bath, Manchester and Liverpool.
“Already 15 million people in the UK live in such places. And it’s happening internationally in Paris, London, Grenoble, Barcelona, Milan, Brussels and many more. Just last week Dublin also announced its 30km/h (18.5mph) limit plans.
“A 20mph limit makes a great walking city like Edinburgh an even better and more liveable place to be.”