NTBCC response to ‘retaining Spaces for People measures’ consultation

Executive Summary

As noted below, the New Town and Broughton Community Council (NTBCC) considers the consultation to be deeply flawed. The inclusion of questions about measures not yet implemented is highly questionable. Until there has been an opportunity to evaluate the success or otherwise of any particular measures, it is impossible to make any valid judgment on whether they should be retained or removed. Many of the questions group cycling and walking together but the needs of these two groups are quite different making it impossible to properly judge the merits of specific measures for each of these groups. The survey is designed to encourage simple yes/no answers to questions about whether measures should be retained and does too little to obtain any insight into the consequences both favourable and otherwise from the implementation of the measures. The Commonplace Mapping tool would have been a far more effective means of obtaining genuine and considered feedback on the various measures that have been introduced. This lack of qualitative feedback will hamper any decision making by Council officials and Councillors. Edinburgh Council and its citizens deserve better than this hastily prepared and poorly designed survey.

With regard to the specific schemes already implemented in our area:

  • We are in favour of continuing with the changes to The Mound and Princes Street East with some provisos.
  • We are opposed to the measures on Waverley Bridge and London Road being retained and indeed believe that they should removed before the end of the current TTRO’s.
  • We do not agree that any of the measures yet to be introduced in our area including those to Broughton Street, Broughton Roundabout, Bellevue, Rodney Street or Canonmills should be considered for retention until there has been an opportunity to better assess their effectiveness.
  • We are also very concerned about the impact on traffic in our area of the planned changes to South Bridge and would urge that implementation is delayed until the consequences of the planned restrictions to vehicular traffic can be better understood. 

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Community Councils Together on Trams/Trams Team meeting, 25 February 2021

Minutes of the Community Councils Together on Trams/Trams Team meeting
(Construction Phase) via Google Meet on Thursday 25 February 2021 at 5:30pm Continue reading

NTBCC: Broughton St – a community hub, Spaces for People proposals

NTBCC has published the following leaflet on Broughton St. It connects with these previous posts:

Click either image below to see the full PDF. The text of the PDF is reproduced below.

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NTBCC disappointed in latest Spaces for People proposals for Broughton Street to Canonmills

The Council have just announced (see separate post) the temporary Spaces for People measures that will be implemented along the route from Canonmills to Broughton Street. While we welcome some aspects of the current plans including the widening of the pavements at the Broughton Road junction and the improvements made to a number of junctions along the route, we intend to highlight our disappointment with the overall package of measures. The current proposals largely ignore the feedback from the Commonplace Mapping conducted last year and make few meaningful improvements to pedestrian and cyclist safety.

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NTBCC Deputation for T&E Committee Meeting on 19 February 2021

NTBCC has submitted a deputation to Edinburgh Council’s Transport and Environment Committee meeting on 19 February 2021. This deputation responds to the City Mobility Plan. NTBCC also submitted, as an attachment, its response to the consultation in 2020. Click the following links to see

For both of these, the text of the documents precedes a link to the original PDF.

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High Street Broughton

Cities are moulded by intricate networks of historic, social, economic and technological inter-relationships. Successful places are those which adapt positively and effectively to meet new challenges. So proposed interventions, however well intentioned, must fully examine, analyse, understand and build positively on this complexity, rather than being isolated responses to pressure from one particular interest group or issue. Edinburgh has a very distinctive character and it is rare that undigested schemes, uncritically imposed from elsewhere, can produce satisfactory results.

Broughton Street is a typical example of a historic highway. Originally the main street of Broughton village outside Edinburgh’s walls, from the 12th century it was also part of the ‘Wester Road’, until Leith Walk was built in 1650, through Bonnington to Leith.

As Edinburgh spread the street was absorbed into the expanding city, reinforcing its role as a community hub for the surrounding area with housing, retailing, pubs and cafés, and at one time also with sixteen religious institutions directly on the street or close by. Later public transport, first as trams and then buses, was routed through it. Many of the shops were of a quality which draw customers from beyond the immediate vicinity. As with most inner-city residential areas, it had experienced a period of decay but has now come back strongly.

Today, it plays multiple roles – as a highway, as a public transport corridor, as a pedestrian place for shopping and leisure, as a residential street, and above all as a high-quality community high street for local residents and those beyond, which contrasted with and complemented the chain stores and larger-scale retail offering of the adjacent city centre, in the same manner as Stockbridge or William Street catered for their localities. Continue reading

Active travel update

On Friday, the Council launched a campaign encouraging everyone to be considerate of other people and follow Scottish Government guidance when enjoying their outdoor exercise and travel.

The press release which was published on Friday can be found here.

Increase in people using off-road paths and parks

Since restrictions were introduced to help manage the coronavirus outbreak, there’s been an increase in people using the city’s network of paths, as well as parks, as part of their daily exercise and for travelling to work or local amenities – with up to five times their normal use.

Data up to week five of lockdown shows increases on the Union Canal towpath, with 17% growth in pedestrian numbers at Harrison Park, whilst cycling numbers have grown by 76% at Wester Hailes. On the North Edinburgh Path Network at Rodney St, pedestrian numbers have grown by 14%, cycling numbers by 32%.  At certain times of the week, especially weekends, much bigger increases have been recorded.

While it’s great that the routes are popular and well-used, we want to make sure that everyone can undertake and enjoy their daily exercise and travel in safety and comfort.

Paths for everyone code of conduct

The campaign will direct people to the Paths for Everyone section of the Council’s webpages, where we hope to be able to display information such as busy routes/times, coming from our pedestrian/cycle counter data.  This aims to encourage people to use alternative routes if they can, or exercise at a less busy time.  Smarter Choices, Smarter Places funding for this project is gratefully received from Paths for All.

About the campaign

example of temporary signageTemporary signage (example on the right: click the thumbnail to see the full-size image) will be rolled out this week, starting on the active travel network entry points, and signage in the parks will follow.  We will be running a complementary social media campaign also, and we would really appreciate your support with sharing this content amongst your followers and networks.

Report issues

There might be local issues that you are aware of where additional signs may help. Please email your suggestions to spacesforpeople@edinburgh.gov.uk.

Wishing you all the best and thank you in advance for your support with our campaign.

Kind regards,

Judith Cowie
‘Smarter Choices, Smarter Places’ Programme Manager
Active Travel
Road Safety and Active Travel
Transport Networks, Place Development
The City of Edinburgh Council
Judith.cowie@edinburgh.gov.uk