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Roseburn to Leith consultation begins (and the debate continues!)

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  1. daisydaisy
    Member

    @David Hunter
    I did attend the Living Streets relaunch meeting. I found the tone from the public who attended to be very negative towards cycling. I wrote the following email to Living Streets Edinburgh, but received no reply to my concerns.

    "Firstly, I'd like to take part in the street audit.

    Regarding the top concerns i.e. (a) obstructions on pavements and footpaths, such as A-boards, bins and poles/signs, and (b) actual and potential conflict with cyclists.

    It seems to me like we’re fighting over the scraps: pedestrians, buggies, cyclists, hedges, lampposts, bins, shop signs all squeezed onto the the wee bit left after cars have monopolised far the biggest chunk of the street. Often two lanes for driving and two for parking. This makes a bin or an overgrown hedge the last straw, but not the fundamental problem in my view. It’s like people don’t even see the space that cars take. Are we going to campaign for anything radical like pedestrianising Princes St, or removing parking spaces to widen pavements, i.e. take space from cars?

    I don't want to be negative, thanks for the work you put into Living Streets."

    Posted 6 years ago #
  2. daisydaisy
    Member

    @David Hunter
    I have lost friends on the road and it is too upsetting for me to see an organisation that is supposed to stand up for pedestrians fighting with cyclists instead of recognising the real danger that comes from cars. I don't see that anywhere on the list of priorities on the Edinburgh Living Streets web page.

    Posted 6 years ago #
  3. SRD
    Moderator

    @stephan Matthiessen

    - well put.

    Posted 6 years ago #
  4. wingpig
    Member

    @Stephan Matthiesen I'll fish out some examples from elsewhere on this site at some point where I make similar "don't underestimate how difficult simply balancing on your feet can be for some" and "you may be able to accelerate rapidly from a junction but plenty can't and get harassed by cars as a result" noises. I have oldish parents and young children and I slow down around other people. I was hoping to point out that LS (presumably the central non-splinter group) were able to more definitively define their concerns elsewhere.

    Posted 6 years ago #
  5. gembo
    Member

    @davidhunter, thanks for engaging in the debate on our forum. Can I ask are you going to continue engaging with us here or do you have another suggestion? It is my understanding that one of our regular contributors on this forum recently resigned from living streets because of the anti cyclist wording of living streets manifesto or position statement. Following that person trying to engage with living streets in person to try to get you to alter this position as surely we are all on the same side with a common objective of reducing the impact of motor vehicles onour streets?

    I do not think all the other contributors who are engaging here with David are awAre that we have tried to engage face to face or possibly by direct email prior to the anti cyclist comments from living streets to get them to change the comments but we failed. By we I mean a regular contributor on here who was a member of living streets. Well that is what I understand happened.

    Posted 6 years ago #
  6. @wingpig I didn't mean you personally, sorry, just got carried away as I just feel very strongly about it. I seem to remember having seen other people make the point and don't claim anything special, although perhaps it doesn't hurt to repeat it.

    Posted 6 years ago #
  7. chdot
    Admin

    In response to @Stephan's post on previous page

    http://citycyclingedinburgh.info/bbpress/topic.php?id=15760&page=36#post-210964

    Good points about (particularly) older people and pedestrians in general.

    I'm sure 'we' would expect a decent amount of 'education' around this route (not just any novel bits) for new cyclists, get-out-of-my-way types (and the rest of us) plus drivers and walkers.

    There's no real way to 'pretend' that this is not about 'cycling' but we do need to keep pointing out that it's not 'just for a tiny number of people', everyone expects this to lead to more people on bikes. It's also quite reasonable to expect people to behave 'well'/sensibly and obey relevant laws.

    However this whole scheme is due to benefit everyone (except the few who expect to keep propelling themselves along in large vehicles without enough concern/care for others) and this should be a key part of any support it's given.

    Posted 6 years ago #
  8. ih
    Member

    "@stephan Matthiessen

    - well put."

    Yes, Stephan, well put in 2 respects. First, in the early part of your post, that LS's concern at crossing the track is no reason to dismiss it completely without making any suggestions how it could be improved, and second, your eloquent description of different perceptions of risk.

    Nearly all this perception of risk is based on the less than ideal experience of shared footpaths, which this project aims to eliminate (unlike the off-Roseburn Terrace route).

    Posted 6 years ago #
  9. Rob
    Member

    "It’s like people don’t even see the space that cars take."

    This is very true. Even as a cyclist I didn't really see it until a trip to Barcelona. Through the week they had no on street parking in the centre. The streets all seemed so wide and spacious ("of course they can fit bike lanes!") until the weekend when they were lined with cars.

    Ever since then I've seen Edinburgh streets differently. Mentally remove the parked cars and they're all really wide!

    Posted 6 years ago #
  10. chdot
    Admin

    The world of ENews commenters is indeed strange -

    "

    From Living Streets submission at http://www.livingstreetsedinburgh.org.uk/2016/02/01/living-streets-edinburgh-response-roseburn-leith-walk-cycle-route-consultation/

    "1.2 We have big concerns about 'floating bus stops', as – irrespective of any ameliorative measures – there will inevitably be some deterioration in the convenience and safety of walking, as pedestrians have to cross the cycle path from the pavement in order to access the bus stop. Our view is that no floating bus stops should be created in Edinburgh until after the evaluation of a pilot (with multiple safeguards) within the next phase of the Leith Walk upgrade. Options to avoid these conflicts should be explored."

    1.3 Walking in the city centre and bus use are closely linked. The impact of reduced bus priority needs to be considered in relation to journey times and air pollution impacts on pedestrians. We urge the council to view the project in a multi-modal context, which balances the needs of cyclists with bus users (as well as people on foot) – especially on busy bus routes."

    Without floating bus-stops the scheme is knackered. And the congestion that the track will create will generate enough CO2 and NO2 to keep people in their houses.
    Or they can walk into town, taking NCR1 by foot to Hatmarket, leaving the by-then incredibly polluted and vile West Coates Cycle Track to lyrca-clad zealots. Wearing gas masks.

    These are just some of the views of the Roseburn "NIMBYs" that keyboard warriors Alexander Childheart, Danger Moose and Jess the Dog ought to watch out for, should they ever stray west of the city centre.
    We all deserve an "inflated sense of democratic entitlement" Jess; if you tried it you might be out trying to change the world, rather than cynically hiding behind a screen. Take to the streets, Comrade Jess - and wake up the Dog within you!!!!!

    Even you might be surprised how much you can achieve by joining hands and forcing politicians to listen.

    more at http://www.kidsnotsuits.co.uk

    Read more: http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/news/roseburn-cycleway-plan-protesters-deliver-2600-strong-petition-1-4021028
    "

    Posted 6 years ago #
  11. Dave
    Member

    I appreciate the LS guy having posted here.

    In view of SRD's having had to resign from Living Streets Edinburgh, I have little faith that it would be worth engaging even if it was possible to put the genie back in the bottle on their current torpedo attempt.

    It must be obvious to everyone at Living Streets that opposing the route in their capacity as the "pedestrian element" will have piled massive negative pressure on the council. Look at the way they are being quoted in the press to bolster the "scrap the cycle route" campaign!

    I can't understand how it isn't obvious - the route *must* follow the main road in its entirety to be effective, otherwise it will both look discontinuous and unsafe to prospective users and be tedious and circuitous to actual users. The route will fail if it ducks down the side streets here (it will be easy for disgruntled residents and shopkeepers elsewhere to use the same arguments to divert it all over the place... disaster).

    It's highly disingenuous to oppose floating bus stops on the grounds that "there are none in Scotland yet". It's not rocket science - even if we ignore the growing number of photos of them actually existing here, they are a standard pattern that has been proven to work well in the rest of the civilised world.

    Sustrans should not support the building of this route unless it is direct. Simple as that - we should crash it into the ground rather than let the money be wasted building something as compromised as the QBC.

    Posted 6 years ago #
  12. Stickman
    Member

    Jeremy Balfour has replied to me to say that although he signed the petition he doesn't agree with all of it. He signed it to show his support for the local community. He says he wants the scheme to go ahead but not on the main road. Totally defeating the point of the scheme.

    Posted 6 years ago #
  13. chdot
    Admin

    As I was saying -

    The world of ENews commenters is indeed strange -

    "

    Edinburgh council creating bottle necks - can't be true. Yes it can because I experience it every day. The council changed the traffic lights at the Newbridge roundabout and we now have a 20-30 minute bottle neck every morning, the impact is right back to the A89, this wasn't the case before the lights were changed and nobody will answer questions at the council.

    Also, look at the work being carried out at the Maybury roundabout, the council state that this is a major train/tram project led by Network Rail - has anyone actually seen work carried out on the roads other than changing the contra flows?

    Could this all be to cleate traffic problems and justify the introduction of tolls or some other tax against car owners.

    "

    http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/news/roseburn-cycleway-plan-protesters-deliver-2600-strong-petition-1-4021028

    Posted 6 years ago #
  14. chdot
    Admin

    I wonder if PG plans to join LSE as well as Spokes.

    Posted 6 years ago #
  15. wingpig
    Member

    HATMARKET.

    I assume that the Friends of Roseburn Park had some hand in the "CYCLISTS SLOW" painted across the paths, presumably in responses to oaves-on-bikes being all whooshy and inconsiderate (as noted in this site's Rubbish Cycling thread). As an alternative to the preceding handwritten or home-printed "CYcLIST DISMOuNT" posters these should be considered fair and reasoned.

    Seafield Road's shared use path doesn't have any "don't be a turnip" warning signs. The Meadows-Innocent link is so far not additionally cluttered with extra warning signs. These on-the-ground in-Scotland trials might indicate that a majority of cyclists can generally behave.

    Posted 6 years ago #
  16. gembo
    Member

    I am in the market for a Hat probably from fabhatrix in the grassmarket.

    Cyclist slow signs in roseburn park are in exactly the correct spots where cyclists should slow - blind corners, narrower path, twisting path etc. I find them helpful. You are asked to dismount a bit further west because they are digging trenches and the solution is a plastic cover which is slippy in rain, frost, snow, dew etc

    Posted 6 years ago #
  17. neddie
    Member

    Good to see that not many cyclists have commented on the EEN article.

    Best bet is to starve the 'against' campaign of the oxygen & publicity they crave and leave the moronic commentators to their own self-destruction. Also to avoid driving EEN ad revenue up.

    Kill the clicks, kill the paper.

    Posted 6 years ago #
  18. chdot
    Admin

    Things are looking up though -

    "

    samlang
    Slightly worrying post below this one by KidsNotSuits. A few points in response:

    1. It seems that it is the whole E/W cycle scheme that 'KNS' wants to stop given the very odd statements about pollution made in the post. Increased cycling, public transport and pedestrians will reduce pollution, unless you buy the false argument that somehow by allowing traffic to flow more easily through one area, hence increasing private car use, you decrease overall pollution. The cross town safe cycle route is a very good way to make cycling more popular, but it is also a good way of making pedestrians safer and more at ease next to calmer roads serving good public transport. All of this is desirable if we want fitter, healthier citizens in a better city, in a better world. Let's work together towards that goal and see if we can please all pedestrains and cyclists. In the post below, it looks like KNS wants to export pollution to other areas by rushing more cars through Roseburn and on to well known jams adn pollution hot spots elsewhere on the route. That cannot be good for anyone else in the city and it seems to indicate that KNS is defending a personal space and cause at the expense of others.

    2. The intemperate statements by KNS are horrible to read and indicate a serious loss of perspective that is not appropriate for a self-appointed representative of a group of citizens: '... knackered...keep people in their houses... taking NCR1 by foot to Hatmarket (sic) ... incredibly polluted and vile West Coates Cycle Track to lyrca-clad (sic) zealots... Wearing gas masks... keyboard warriors... cynically hiding behind a screen. Take to the streets... wake up the Dog within you!!!!!'

    3. The personal nature of the remarks and their threatening tone is quite wrong for a reasonable discussion and again reflects a loss both of perspective, grip on the nature of reasonable arguments and a need to return to careful assessment of fact-based arguments.

    The scheme can no doubt be improved upon but it seems that this is not the real motive behind KNS's actions. I hope councillors reflect on this when they come to consider the plans and support and objections

    "

    Posted 6 years ago #
  19. daisydaisy
    Member

    Re my earlier post, Living Streets did reply to my email to arrange to go on the street audit.

    Posted 6 years ago #
  20. HankChief
    Member

    Some twitter chat with Frank Ross tonight including this:

    @FrankRoss06: @hank_chief @RangiRevo @adamrmcvey is suggesting a stakeholder group to oversee design,as they did in Leith, I fully support this.

    Posted 6 years ago #
  21. Rosie
    Member

    @chdot

    Yes, just between you and me the tone used is counter-productive. Has "cycling Nazis" appeared yet? Or two-wheeled fascists?

    Posted 6 years ago #
  22. Stickman
    Member

    Look how well Leith Walk has turned out and the respect local businesses have for the "cycle lanes".

    Posted 6 years ago #
  23. @HankChief On the one hand I aggree its's useful to get all sides together on one table. On the other hand, his proposal sounds more like delaying tactics. If we have to start from scratch now with stakeholder discussions we won't really see any concrete proposals before 2017 and then they might never happen. (PS: I'm @RangiRevo on Twitter for bicycle-related stuff, @St_Matthiesen for other things)

    Big question: despite all the glitches in advertising, was actually anybody stopped from responding to the consultation? Was there anybody at all who desperately wanted to respond but didn't because they heard about it too late?

    Posted 6 years ago #
  24. Arellcat
    Moderator

    Good point, Stickman. Remember, too, how the bike lane on Buccleuch St was abused by people parking their cars on it, even before it was finished, I think. Or the cobbled centre section of George IV Bridge at Christmastime, and that's not even a cycle lane.

    People fly tip in certain locations partly because those locations are conveniently out of the way, but also because other people fly tip there, sending a message to would-be fly tippers that while it's wrong, it's ok because everyone else is doing it.

    If you want to police parking (or not-parking) starting from the opening date of a new regime, you have to be prepared to be tough right from the start. If you allow for 'extenuating circumstances' you create a culture of excuse-making, excuse-allowing, and a norming of casual abuse that disadvantages everyone but those causing it.

    Posted 6 years ago #
  25. .. besides, how is a stakeholder group more democratic than a public consultation that everybody can contribute to? Who selects the stakeholders? Will there be a mechanism how ordinary people can contribute, or would it all be behind closed doors?

    Posted 6 years ago #
  26. wingpig
    Member

    "Who selects the stakeholders? Will there be a mechanism how ordinary people can contribute, or would it all be behind closed doors?"

    The council, though I presume that stakeholders could suggest other stakeholders who might have an interest (SUSTRANS, Spokes, LivingStreets (Scotland, rather than Edinburgh) and PoP) in attending last year's stakeholder workshops with Atkins. I have no reason to doubt the council cycling team's assertion that community groups and business representatives were invited; a community group was definitely invited and represented at the Haymarket stakeholder workshop, and suggested potential concerns/objections on behalf of some of the businesses (such as the guesthouses), despite there being no direct representative in attendance.

    Posted 6 years ago #
  27. chdot
    Admin

    Count Dracula didn't like stakeholders.

    Posted 6 years ago #
  28. @wingpig sorry, misunderstanding. I meant specifically the potential stakeholder group that Frank Ross and/or Adam McVey suggested on twitter which should start from scratch and "oversee the design" of the route. He wanted a "priority" for "local communities" because "council is committed to local communities having a control over their local area."

    The issue that I don't get is about power. If a stakeholder group is purely for consultation or deliberation, that's different than a group that actually has the power to decide something significant. In the latter case there must be democratic safeguards that the group is representative, accountable, transparent, that everybody can influence it in a defined way (like elections), and that dissenters are not bullied but treated fairly.

    I basically don't understand what Ross is suggesting but it does seem like a strategy to delay any actual change as much as possible.

    Posted 6 years ago #
  29. wingpig
    Member

    That Stakeholders for the Leith Walk Project seem to be everyone who replied to any of the consultations and ticked the "keep me informed" box...

    Posted 6 years ago #
  30. @daisydaisy Is this a public meeting with Living Streets that others can attend too?

    Given that the discussion about their submission is already out in the open and taking place on Twitter and here, I would think it would be good if Living Streets arranged a public event where views can be exchanged, if they do not want to engage online.

    Posted 6 years ago #

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