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"Central Edinburgh Transformation" - Transport Comittee 5/10

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  1. Stickman
    Member

    Is this the start of something big or just another set of aspirations and visions?

    http://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/download/meetings/id/54987/item_75_-_central_edinburgh_transformation_–_scoping_report

    3.6 Despite this progress, the city needs to take action now to ensure that as Edinburgh accommodates more people, jobs and activity, the quality of life and health of its residents, success of its economy and character of its built and natural environment is enhanced and not put at risk.
    3.6.1 As a compact, walkable city, Edinburgh’s public realm does not always provide the best pedestrian experience. Congested historic streets, narrow footways, increased footfall, street clutter, the variable quality of materials and long-wait times at crossings, frustrate safe and convenient movement;
    3.6.2 Edinburgh has an active and growing cycling culture with more people benefitting from this healthy, accessible and pollution-free way to get around. However, cyclists must negotiate conflicts with cars, public transport, pedestrians and the rolling topography of the city;
    3.6.3 Edinburgh’s publicly owned public transport system is the envy of many other cities, yet its high patronage results in several thousand bus movements per day on Princes St and crowded bus stops across the city.
    3.6.4 Congestion can be exacerbated at certain times of day due to delivery vehicles or during the summer festival period when the city’s population doubles, putting pressure on central infrastructure;
    3.6.5 Air quality in central Edinburgh and its gateway approaches fail to meet Scottish Government standards. Traffic generated nitrogen dioxide concentrations must be tackled for the health of residents and visitors.

    3.8 The scope of the project will involve rethinking transport priorities across the city in order to unlock the potential of streets and to provide a public realm that better meet the needs of residents, pedestrians, cyclists and to provide a more integrated public transport network.
    3.9 Edinburgh can learn from other leading cities that have balanced city growth with an improved quality of life and urban environment and develop solutions that reflect its own circumstances and the needs of its citizens

    Posted 1 year ago #
  2. chdot
    Admin

    Sounds good!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  3. chdot
    Admin

    Good point is that it's a report commissioned by a politician - Cllr MacInnes.

    "

    2. Background
    2.1 This report responds to the Motion by Councillor Macinnes approved by the City of Edinburgh Council on 29 June 2017 by which the Council agreed to prepare:
    2.1.1 A medium-term action plan, to be implemented before the end of this Council term, to improve the public realm in the city centre with the aim of improving conditions for, and prioritising access for pedestrians, cyclists and public transport users; and for a scoping report on this work to be brought to Transport & Environment Committee within two cycles.

    "

    Posted 1 year ago #
  4. gibbo
    Member

    Is this the start of something big or just another set of aspirations and visions?

    The latter.

    Is there anything in those first 6 points that isn't well known?

    And the last two are so vague, they're meaningless.

    IMO, we'll know when the council is ready to get serious when they talk about segregated bike paths on major city centre roads.

    Until then, they're talking about everything except the solution.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  5. Morningsider
    Member

    " Our long term vision is a Scotland where:

    key parts of town and city centres are free of non-essential car and other road traffic, for the benefit of people and businesses;
    the practical first choice for personal travel, particularly within, and to, centres of towns and cities, is by foot, by cycle or by accessible, affordable, efficient, safe and environmentally-clean public transport;
    social exclusion is reduced through increased accessibility to public transport for those without a car;"

    Travel Choices for Scotland: The Scottish Integrated Transport White Paper - July 1998.

    Perhaps it's time to stop writing and start doing. Just saying.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  6. gibbo
    Member

    @morningsider

    Perhaps it's time to stop writing and start doing. Just saying.

    That's the difference between talking a good game and actually meaning what they say.

    We're not hearing anything new here. No-one needs a new report to go over this old ground.

    It just feels like more stalling tactics. Talking about vague stuff, rather than making concrete plans.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  7. crowriver
    Member

    When I spotted the title of this thread, I thought 5/10 might mean a score of five out of ten rather than 5th October. Maybe I got it right first time?

    "Edinburgh’s public realm does not always provide the best pedestrian experience"

    Masters of understatement!

    "Good point is that it's a report commissioned by a politician - Cllr MacInnes."

    Let's not forget that's the same Cllr Macinnes that issued this public defence of the Picardy Place designs:

    ---

    “The designs for Picardy Place have been carefully developed to provide a successful and accessible connection between the Leith Programme and the forthcoming City Centre East West Link, both of which are aimed at making active travel significantly more attractive, especially for less confident cyclists.

    “The option for a ‘Y junction’ layout, similar to that proposed by Sustrans, was considered by the working group alongside the current design. It was rejected on the basis that it would generate delays for traffic and bus passengers, extend crossing times for pedestrians, and would not cater well for an integrated public transport interchange. The design also departed from the historic street layout.

    “Their revised plans would require substantial redesign of the proposed tram line and the permanent closure of Leith Street to cars and Calton Road to all vehicles, causing congestion elsewhere in the city centre.”

    ---

    "Our long term vision"

    There was a song back in the sixties "In The Year 2525". Maybe that's what they meant by "long term".

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    Posted 1 year ago #
  8. chdot
    Admin

  9. chdot
    Admin

  10. chdot
    Admin

  11. Morningsider
    Member

    I reckon if you laid out all the land use and transport plans, supplementary guidance, design guides, vision documents and proposed cycle scheme reports that apply to the streets of Edinburgh end-to-end, they would stretch further than the current total length of segregated cycle lanes in the city.

    Seriously, there's only 150m of it. That's less than 500 A4 documents - documentation on the Roseburn scheme itself could cover most of that.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  12. neddie
    Member

    An update:

    http://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/download/meetings/id/54988/item_76_-_george_street_and_first_new_town_design_project_update

    Recommendations

    1.1 It is recommended that the Committee:

    1.1.1 notes that the contract for design services, at a value of £289,400.00 for the George Street and First New Town Design Project (GNT) was awarded to WYG Environment Planning Transport Ltd by the Executive Director of Place
    on 25 September 2017 under delegated authority.

    1.1.2 notes that the scope of GNT project work is wider than previous George Street project, and is being developed within the context of the Central Edinburgh Transformation, being reported to this committee.

    Posted 10 months ago #
  13. Harts Cyclery
    Member

    So George St can be designed with City Centre transformation in mind, but Picardy Place can't....

    Posted 10 months ago #
  14. Morningsider
    Member

    Yay - there goes another £120,000 of Sustrans Community Links funding for 2017/18. That's okay though as it provides "...an allowance for the Council to undertake additional work where required to achieve a preliminary design that is fully integrated with other key projects in the city centre, that promote active travel and a high-quality pedestrian experience."

    Thinking about it - has any actual new cycle infrastructure been built in the last year or two?

    Posted 10 months ago #
  15. wingpig
    Member

    @Morningsider Assuming the red paint over the tram tracks doesn't count, probably just that bit of shared kerb on the corner of Carrington Road/East Fettes.

    Posted 10 months ago #
  16. Frenchy
    Member

    Meadows-Innocent was built in 2015, which is stretching "the last year or two".

    Posted 10 months ago #
  17. Klaxon
    Member

    300 metres on Leith Walk that took twice as long as it was supposed to, and the whole programme was funded through a central government grant not capital budget or sustrans.

    Posted 10 months ago #
  18. acsimpson
    Member

    The Edinburgh Gateway tunnel. But then it was built by the railways ... And opened last year.

    Posted 10 months ago #
  19. gibbo
    Member

    "...an allowance for the Council to undertake additional work where required to achieve a preliminary design that is fully integrated with other key projects in the city centre, that promote active travel and a high-quality pedestrian experience."

    I pasted that text into hemingwayapp.com and it said it has a "pst graduate" reading level.

    Honestly, why do people write like that? Incompetence? Pretentiousness? Or a deliberate attempt to prevent the reader from understanding what's being said/done?

    Surely the council works for the average person. Maybe they should be obliged to write in a way the average person can understand?

    PS A high FK score is usually a result of muddled thinking, rather than bad grammar or poor writing ability.

    Posted 10 months ago #
  20. Klaxon
    Member

    There’s no better arguement for a sweeping city centre transformation than seeing the real world impact of the Leith St closure

    Picardy Place, Leith Walk, and the entire bridges corridor, are all significantly quieter than usual

    I want this to be the new usual

    It’s really quite something

    Posted 10 months ago #
  21. neddie
    Member

    The Transport and Environment Committee has been rescheduled and will be held on Friday 9 March 2018

    Posted 7 months ago #
  22. Frenchy
    Member

    Daisy Narayanan (deputy director of Sustrans Scotland) has been appointed leader of the City Centre Transformation project.

    http://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/news/article/2451/highly_respected_placemaking_and_transport_expert_appointed_to_lead_major_capital_transformation_project

    Very good sign, I think.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  23. chdot
    Admin

    “Very good sign, I think.”

    Mostly

    Daisy Narayanan, Deputy Director at Sustrans Scotland(external link), has taken up a one-year secondment to the City of Edinburgh Council

    CEC has had various people employed by Sustrans in ActiveTravel.

    Presume they pay, and probably cheaper than normal external ‘consultants’, but really they should have more permanent staff.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  24. Frenchy
    Member

    Mostly

    Yeah, you make a good point. I meant this was a good appointment for the project - someone who definitely gets active travel, knows the problems that need to be fixed and how active/sustainable travel is necessary to fix them.

    It's certainly not clear if the council should be having to look externally for such candidates. It's also not clear if this is good for Sustrans, who I believe are already short staffed.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  25. Stickman
    Member

    Will she manage to overcome the institutional inertia at the council?

    Posted 7 months ago #
  26. Harts Cyclery
    Member

    I said we should write-off Picardy Place as the last legacy gasp of the old tram project and that we should judge the new administration on the CCT.

    This is a VERY positive first step. I tweeted Big Lesley last night and said I hope the Council enable Daisy to do the job she's capable of doing. Lesley said that was the aim. Let's see.

    Obviously there will be 'challenges' but I'm very optimistic.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  27. Morningsider
    Member

    Well, all I can say is "Good luck, Daisy" - if there is anything I (we, CCE?) can do to help then let us know.

    Posted 7 months ago #
  28. chdot
    Admin

    So what’s to be done? The first draft of the Edinburgh Economic Strategy published by the city council earlier this year had very little to say about what’s needed to prevent tumbleweed blowing through the West End. If anything, it hinted at more controls, saying: “We will ensure that the right balance is found between competing priorities, realising the area’s economic potential, and enhancing it as an attractive place to live.” It does not spell out what that balance should be, but instead promises a new Central Edinburgh Transformation Project which “will guide future development, ensuring the city centre improves its value to all residents, meets the needs of a growing economy, and reflects Edinburgh’s status as a capital city”. All well and good, but what does this actually mean? “The project will improve the public realm in the city centre with the aim of improving conditions” is hardly the most instructive and “prioritising access for pedestrians, cyclists and public transport users” is about as specific as it gets.

    https://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/news/opinion/john-mclellan-city-centre-faces-biggest-challenge-in-70-years-1-4701767

    Posted 7 months ago #
  29. I were right about that saddle
    Member

    Did a loop round town today. God it was grim.

    * Roads disintegrating
    * Drivers lawless and unhinged - wrong side of the road on numerous ocassions
    * Parking rules openly mocked
    * Cycle facilities intermittent and inadequate
    * Broken glass
    * Tram rails
    * Bonkers signage
    * 20mph limit universally eschewed

    I really do think the experience of cycling in the city centre has got worse since I started in the eighties. Depressing, eh?

    Posted 7 months ago #
  30. chdot
    Admin

    No idea if/how this fits in -

    EE Bid Renewal | What Matters Most?

    WAY FINDING Improved way finding throughout the city centre

    POLICING Additional policing resources in the city centre

    PUBLIC SPACE Animation and management of public space during the Festival periods

    http://renewal.essentialedinburgh.co.uk

    Posted 7 months ago #

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