Meadows to George Street improvements

Wednesday May 29th 2019

Edinburgh-Bottom-of-the-Mound

The proposed view from the bottom of the mound.

Written by Midlothian View reporter, Luke Jackson

Views are being sought on proposals to transform walking, cycling and public spaces along some of Edinburgh’s busiest streets.

The Meadows to George Street project aims to significantly enhance the experience of those travelling on foot or by bike on streets connecting the two destinations, improving public realm and increasing accessibility.

Plans, which focus on Hanover Street, the Mound, Bank Street, George IV Bridge, Candlemaker Row, Forrest Road, Bristo Place and Teviot Place, include a segregated cycleway along the length of the route, wider pavements, new public spaces and pedestrian priority on Forrest Road and Candlemaker Row.

A consultation on concept designs is now underway, with feedback received to be considered as designs are developed.

Transport and Environment Vice Convener, Councillor Karen Doran, said: “We’ve made it clear that we need to make significant changes to the way we use our streets if we are to create a Capital fit for the future – and these proposals demonstrate the kind of accessible, people-focused city we want to develop.

“People have already told us about the improvements they want to see along the route between the Meadows and George Street, which have been reflected in our designs. We want to make sure we continue to involve the public as we move forward with proposals, so I would encourage anyone interested to have their say as part of our consultation.”

Infrastructure Delivery Manager for Sustrans Scotland, Tierney Lovell, said: “This is a really great opportunity for people to get involved in making walking, cycling and wheeling through the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town easier for everyone. Our team have already been out to meet local businesses, residents and visitors to discuss possible plans, and we’re looking forward to seeing the feedback we get on the concept designs.”

Members of the Transport and Environment Committee gave the consultation the go-ahead earlier in May, as part of the broader Edinburgh City Centre Transformation strategy (ECCT) to reshape Edinburgh by improving public spaces and prioritising movement on foot, by bike and by public transport. A consultation on ECCT is also currently underway, and can be completed online.

Proposed measures build on engagement carried out in 2018 with the public and stakeholder organisations to find out what they would like to see improved on these streets, in addition to other surveys and modelling.

As well as ECCT, Meadows to George Street builds upon the Council’s Active Travel Action plan and integrates with the George Street and First New Town project. The project is one of the winners of Sustrans Scotland’s 2017 Community Links PLUS (now Places for Everyone) funding from Transport Scotland and will be match-funded by the Council.

A series of outdoor public events will let people meet the project team and find out more about proposals and will take place –

Thursday, 30 May, 8am-6pm at Middle Meadow Walk
Sunday, 9 June, 10am-4pm at Candlemaker Row
Saturday, 22 June, 10am-4pm at the Mound

Consultation materials will also be on display and available for comment at the Central Library on 4, 5, 6, 25, 26 and 27 June and at the National Museum of Scotland between Friday 7 and Friday 14 June.

The consultation will run until 7 July and can be completed online.

Edinburgh-George-IV-Bridge

The proposed view on George IV Bridge.

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