Ward 8 Spaces For People Update

Introduction
It has been a wee while since I provided an update on the Spaces for People project  – basically because the whole thing appears to have stalled. In this vacuum, a bit of misinformation has been circulating. Within that context it is important to note four things:  

  1. No party has ever asked for all Spaces for People schemes to be removed.
  2. All parties have supported the installation of at least some schemes.
  3. All parties have supported at least some schemes at least some of the time.
  4. Covid-19 is no longer the justification for the schemes.

The November 2021 Transport & Environment Committee meeting set the direction of travel for the schemes impacting on my Ward – Lanark Road (the Oct 2021 decision was confirmed), Buckstone Terrace (A702), Braid Road (not actually in my Ward) and the two primary schools (Bonaly & Buckstone).

Lanark Road
It was agreed to progress this scheme to an ETRO. The process provides a statutory framework and public engagement process (not a homemade consultation) to consider any future changes to the scheme.

Comiston Road
It was agreed to also progress this scheme to an ETRO. It was agreed at the Transport Committee that changes to Braid Road and Comiston Road are impacting on delays to public transport on Comiston road (my video evidence here). The agreed solution to this was to remove a large section of the cycle lane and replace it with a bus lane.

Braid Road
This will progress to an ETRO, and be reopened to two-way traffic. This will only happen, however, after a pedestrian crossing (agreed pre-covid) is installed at The Hermitage.

Schools
A School Travel Plan Review is underway for all schools. This piece of work will be carried out over the next 24 months. The aim of the review is to develop a 5 year action plan with parents, children and the schools to make the routes and streets surrounding the schools safer and to encourage more active travel. Schools with temporary Spaces for People measures are being prioritised and the survey for Buckstone and Bonaly has started. Residents will be involved once the initial plan is developed.

Progress
Clearly, November 2021 was 5 months ago so it is only right that people should wonder what is happening. On the 3rd of February I was told that the ETRO consultations would start by the end of that month, and later I was told mid-March.  To date, I have seen no visible progress.

The latest update I have for the schools was from mid-March, at that point I was told for Buckstone that “We are currently in dialogue with the school about the future of the Spaces for People measures at Buckstone as well as road safety issues on the wider routes to school”. I understand, however, that there has been no contact with the school since November. I expect the same applies to Bonaly.

So what’s causing the delay? Clearly, the Transport Committee should be doing more to scrutinise these projects. The underlying issue is, however, that the workload exceeds the staff resources available.   

3 thoughts on “Ward 8 Spaces For People Update

  1. Thanks for the update Scott. Would it be cynical to think that “they” are happy to delay any consultation/changes as “they” believe if it’s left in place as is, everyone will ultimately just accept it as is?

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  2. Sorry this is total tripe –as many of us said at the roll out ,these schemes were being put forward with nothing to do with spaces for people —it is spaces for cyclists and it has ruined the ebb and flow of Edinburgh’s Traffic –If the home working plan crews would get out into the real world and run a business from Morningside and see the snarl up of traffic both ways up and down braid burn park and Biggar road and see the queuing because of the complete mishmash of probably the worst road planning ever seen –up the old Braid Road. Our employees are leaving their jobs earlier now to return to our yard and arriving later to jobs as these plans have killed and are killing the service industry .

    The Lanark Road is a farce too with vehicles parked near the middle of the Road and residents and residents are fighting for places as the spaces are not there and they do not feel their car is safe.

    As for Rose burn /Haymarket , designs must have been made after a night out.

    We want to work with cycling but we are railroaded into submission with green mantra , who will now claim that Edinburgh’s pollution is on the increase and I wonder how –this deliberate ploy disrupt flow and upset rates and tax paying and ROAD tax paying business folk and ordinary residents of the Capital is there for all to see.

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