CEC has now responded to NTBCC’s submission on the latest plans for George Street, as follows:
New Town and Broughton Community Council
c/o Simon Holledge
31st May 2022
George Street and First New Town (GNT) Public Realm Proposals
The Council note and welcome the recent comments received from the New Town and Broughton Community Council (NTBCC) regarding the public realm plans for George Street and the First New Town (GNT).
NTBCC has been one of the key stakeholders over the years through the development of the proposals for George Street. The Council recognises that the views and comments raised by NTBCC are critical in shaping final proposals for the area and ensuring that the project is a success in terms of enhancing George Street and the First New Town as a place to live, work and visit. As the Council has stated, collaboration is key to the success of the GNT project and we will continue to work with NTBCC as final project proposals are developed.
The Council’s response to the main items raised by the NTBCC are detailed below.
Equality Impact Assessment
An initial Integrated Impact Assessment (IIA), which allows the Council to meet its legal obligations in relation to equality, socio-economic disadvantage, climate change, sustainability, the environment and human rights for the GNT project, was produced in May 2019 and was updated in March 2020. During this current design stage of the project the IIA will be reviewed once more to reflect current designs but more importantly operational plans for the area which are due to be finalised by autumn this year. Working in partnership with key stakeholders, especially those representing disabled and mobility impaired groups, we will continue to review the project IIA as the delivery of the project moves forward.
Continuous engagement and consultation have taken place on the GNT project from the outset and the Council will continue to adopt a collaborative approach in developing final proposals. Groups including Edinburgh Access Panel have been closely involved and a specific session was recently organised with them relating to the current Stage 3 proposals.
In line with the Council’s City Mobility Plan, City Centre Transformation Plan (CCT) and Climate Emergency, a key objective of the George Street project is to make it easier for people to walk, wheel and cycle as well as provide better access to public transportation. With regards to people with mobility issues or disabilities, we will remove as much street clutter as possible, improve junctions, introduce seating areas, and significantly widen footpaths. This will all help to enhance the experience for everyone who wants to access and enjoy the street.