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"Play Streets"

(16 posts)
  • Started 3 years ago by kaputnik
  • Latest reply from Edinburgh Cycle Training

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  1. kaputnik
    Moderator

    http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/news/transport/dad-wants-car-ban-for-kids-safety-1-3556084

    FOR the first time, cars will be banned from a city street while children play due to the application of a new scheme.

    Dad Thomas Lynch is holding talks with neighbours about agreeing to close down Parkgrove Terrace, Clermiston, for two hours.

    The move comes after residents were given the power to apply for a temporary traffic regulation order (TRO).

    It means vehicles will be diverted for a set amount of time so children can play in safety.

    Although the chipwrapper says this is "the first time", it's actually an old idea, where streets used to be designated "play streets" between schools finishing and sunset, and no vehicle movements allowed. That was back in the olden days where very few people would have had cars anyways. There used to be a sign up on the corner of Lorne Square in Leith back when I was a nipper and used to visit my Nana down there, but that's going back over 20 years and was probably defunct even then.

    There's an image of such a street on Edinphoto, here. The image is also of historical interest as the street and tenements no longer exist; Freer Street and surrounding tenements and school were cleared away when Scottish Brewers built their new Fountain Brewery on the site in the late 1960s/early 1970s. Freer Street was at the east end of the site, approximately under where the Tartan Club was. The development plan for the area calls for the street and name to be reinstated.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  2. cb
    Member

    I like the way davey77 gets more and more irate in his comment, saving it all up for a final outburst:

    "What about a ban on children playing in the streets ? I don't want children kicking balls into my garden and off my car, or running about screaming, causing chaos for everyone. Maybe the father in this article needs to Grow up, stop being so lazy and selfish, and realise that the cars are for roads.
    Parenting involves a lot more than dumping your children onto the roads to play: he should stop being so pathetic and lazy and take his child to the massive parks in Clermiston with his pals for a kickabout or to play on the swings. THe roads should not be closed for lazy scummy parents so their children can play. That's not what they're for. They're for transport. In summary: Stop being a lazy idiot and take your child to the park rather than forcing your child onto the rest of us. Complete and utter lazy filth."

    He seemed to get annoyed that someone had voted down one of his other comments so I have just voted all his comments down.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  3. steveo
    Member

    I remember some of streets in Dalry had those signs up when I were young but I don't remember them ever being adhered to.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  4. slowcoach
    Member

    one of the old signs was left in Dalry (Wardlaw Terr at junction with Stewart Terr) until at least 2008 on google streetview and replaced accidently (?) for 2011 https://goo.gl/maps/X2KLT (if you can select the older images from streetview)

    Posted 3 years ago #
  5. LivD
    Member

    I don't think that's Freer St in the first link, I think it's Thorntree Street. Source: Used to live there. There is (on Streetview anyway) still a Play Street sign up.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  6. fimm
    Member

    @slowcoach I remember that sign as I live round there and I always thought it was hilarious as 1) no one paid any attention to it and 2) they are all one bedroom flats round there and so (in this day and age at least) there are virtually no children living there (maybe the odd baby).

    Posted 3 years ago #
  7. kaputnik
    Moderator

    @LivD I've scrutinised the photo and compared it to Thorntree Street and I agree there are strong similarities - a short, narrow street of fairly plain tenements with an industrial unit at the end.

    But... I think theres a number of reasons it isn't Thorntree.
    - arrangements of the windows, the finish on the masonry
    - the street in the photo appears to run downhill at a faster rate than Thorntree Street (based on how frequently the stretcher courses in each block drop a level)
    - the building at the end matches closely with the general profile and look of the Castle Mills rubber works, which would have been at the end of Freer Street at this time. At the end of Thorntree Street was the Capitol Cinema (now Mecca bingo). It's profile would have been the same in the old photo as it is now, but I don't think it matches.
    - there was a low building at the end of Freer Street which jutted out slightly, this can be corroborated on the maps. No such building existed on Thorntree Street, a back wall of a yard was where the new houses are now, but they followed the line of the tenements. Also there was a gap on the left between the tenements and the factory where there was a mission hall.
    - the number of blocks of tenements match the map for Freer Street, as does the left hand being shorter than the right hand

    I've only ever seen one picture of Freer Street, it's taken looking the other way from the far end, and it does match the filthy, poor-quality stonework and generally plain, dilapidated look of the tenements.

    There's a good 1:1250 map on the NLS historic maps website here.

    Nice spot on the Play Street sign though!

    Posted 3 years ago #
  8. Min
    Member

    You have to wonder what made us diverge so massively from the Dutch!

    While through traffic would be banned under one of the new TROs, vehicles belonging to street residents will be exempt.

    Hmm. I am not sure how he is planning to distinguish between the two or how he is going to guarantee that residents will drive safely.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  9. steveo
    Member

    There is always the hope that peer pressure will prevent one from running over the neighbours kids. I hold out little hope.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  10. crowriver
    Member

    I live on a cul-de-sac. However it provides access to numerous other culs-de-sac, and has a couple of businesses at the far end, so deliveries and customers drive along the street. Therefore it is often quite busy with vehicles during the day. It requires care to cross, even though speeds are generally low there is an epidemic of double parking and thus difficult sometimes to see approaching vehicles, or the drivers to see pedestrians. All that parking leads to a lot of reversing, u-turns and general manoeuvring too.

    I appreciate this scenario is rather different to a suburban one, however one thing that might work in my street is to restrict parking to residents permits: it would cut down on opportunistic parking traffic. Not much to be done about the businesses though.

    As it is, my kids play on the neighbouring culs-de-sac as vehicle movements are far fewer.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  11. fimm
    Member

    Here's a blog about a Play Street in London:
    http://subversivesuburbanite.wordpress.com/2014/06/03/all-played-out/#more-235
    The one mentioned in the OP sounds similar to that one.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  12. sallyhinch
    Member

    Lots more info (and inspiration) about the modern play street / playing out movement here. It's a shame that something that used to be just what kids did has to now be organised and roads closed for, but it's a start (and having been to one, great fun - especially the part where you stop cars).

    Posted 3 years ago #
  13. gibbo
    Member

    That's not what they're for. They're for transport.

    Has he even looked at Parkgrove Terrace on a map?

    How would closing this street cause any problems for anyone not living in (or visiting someone who lives in) Parkgrove Terrace?

    No-one is suggesting closing Clermiston Road so kids can play.

    Posted 3 years ago #
  14. sallyhinch
    Member

    I wonder if some of those extant signs still have any legal force ... If the residents were on board, it would be easier than getting a temporary closure...

    Posted 3 years ago #
  15. chdot
    Admin

    Don't know if this play street has actually been created yet (or if others planned), presume relates to this /

    "

    one I have is to establish Play Streets – cities like Bath and Bristol have actually closed down streets at certain times for this purpose.

    "

    http://www.theedinburghreporter.co.uk/2013/11/councillor-robson-appointed-as-play-champion/

    Posted 2 years ago #
  16. Lots of the side streets in Gorgie were "Play Streets" when I was wee.

    About ten years ago, I asked CEC to make our street a play street, or at least put up signs, a) lots of kids play on the street and b) drivers generally entered the cul de sac a wee bit too quickly

    I was informed such a thing was no longer possible, though a few months later they did put speed bumps in which annoyed a lot of neighbours.

    I wasn't looking to restrict access, merely to warn drivers to EXPECT kids playing on the road.

    This is an interesting development, but I'd expect most of my neighbours to veto anything which restricted their access and/or parking.

    Posted 2 years ago #

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