November meeting headlines

At Monday’s well-attended meeting of the New Town & Broughton Community Council, there were discussions with Police Scotland Community officers on local crime & how the community can help with 20 mph limit enforcement; a discussion with a Council official on the next steps on the re-design of George Street; details of further planned public consultation on Picardy Place ; initial thoughts on the recent public exhibition on the new home for the Scottish Chamber Orchestra in St Andrews Square ; NTBCC position regarding the Royal High School “hotel” appeal to the Scottish Reporter(s)  ; Edinburgh licensing issues and finally a brief discussion on how to better regulate the growing  Airbnb presence in Edinburgh city centre.

Police Scotland reported on several incidents of vehicle crime in the area (Satnavs, phones and cash being stolen from parked cars) & pointed residents to their website & precautions that you can take http://www.scotland.police.uk/keep-safe/home-and-personal-property/secure-your-car

They also discussed a new initiative to help enforcement of the 20 mph limits “Community Speed Watch” where they would train residents in local communities in the use of speed guns to monitor traffic speeds in their area. More details to follow.

Anna Herriman from Edinburgh Council discussed the next steps in the re-design of George Street. White Young Green (WYG) with LDA Design have been awarded a contract to further develop a “Masterplan” for George Street, keeping the principles of previous work completed by Ironside Farrar – there are further public consultation being planned in early December (at the Assembly Rooms)  - dates to be confirmed in the next few days.

We discussed the new consultations by Edinburgh Council on the re-design of Picardy Place – details are available on NTBCC’s website in a separate post. Whilst we are not fully convinced as to the desire of the current stakeholders (Edinburgh St James developers, the Scottish Government and Edinburgh Council) to significantly amend their initial plans for this important traffic interchange, we do encourage everyone to state their views constructively on the current proposals at the upcoming consultations.

Although we were (at least initially) disappointed in the detail available on the plans for a new concert hall adjoining Dundas House in St Andrews Square, we agreed to summarise the views of the community council on the questionnaire provided at the initial consultation and will post on the NTBCC website in the next week.

We plan to meet with the Cockburn Association & Edinburgh World Heritage to agree the best way forwards for NTBCC’s views to be represented in the recently announce appeal by Duddingston House Properties & Urbanist Hotels to the recent unanimous planning application refusal to their amended plans for the old Royal High School.

NTBCC continue to object to licensing applications where there is a strong potential for adverse impact to be caused to adjacent residents – be this outside seating or the imposition of the new relaxed council guidelines regarding live or amplified music.

Finally – we support the current initiative by Andy Wightman in the Scottish Parliament to give local authorities the necessary legal framework to better regulate the growing issue of Airbnb’s.

If anyone wanted to raise concerns with local issues, then please use the “Contact Us” facility on our website. Our full meeting minutes will be available on the NTBCC website (www.ntbcc.org.uk) in the coming weeks.

Our next meeting is on Monday 11 December – usual time, usual place – details on www.ntbcc.org.uk