City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

Edinburgh Trams - Disaster follows disaster! Anyone for secondhand trams?

By actionman - Posted on 15 August 2011

Edinburgh Tram and Lothian Buses

Oh dear, oh dear. The news that Croydon has rejected the lease of a number of the surplus Edinburgh trams will come as no surprise to many people who have long realised that this "disaster on wheels" is simply heading to wholesale implosion.

It is too late to save it and those who are trying desperately to save their own reputations and professional credibility had better realise that there is little they can do apart from "mothball" the whole scheme until the world emerges from the current financial crisis.

But to have ordered "special" bespoke trams which are the largest in Europe - so can not be loaned or leased to anyone - and to have made them so different from all other cities, right down to the leather seats embossed with "Edinburgh Trams"  seems crass stupidity.

Also who on earth authorised the order for all 26 trams at the one time? What an utter waste of money.

So we have a huge Tram Depot we do not need, 26 trams we do not need, and a host of other very expensive equipment which we shall probably never need.  And the Council are trying hard to lumber us with a £15-20 million repayment on a loan to finance the rest of the work - I sometimes wonder if I am living in a mad-house!

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The sad, bad and lunatic revelations that are cascading down now are like a wall of mud and sludge crashing through a broken dam.

The initial project has been so badly conceived it has finally popped open like rotten fruit.

The budgetary mess, the overshoot, the pollution caused, the too big, too fast, too wide carriages, spending all the money upfront (to try and make sure no-one will ever pull out because of the money we have spent) , all these are just symptoms of the underlying disease.

Unless the flaws in the tram project are tackled ..and that is a stop/mothball and fundamental rethink to eliminate the structural and conceptual errors...the bad news isn't ever going to stop.

It has taken down careers, reputations and even the council's own benighted 'arms-length' company and it is continuing to do mustn't be allowed to take down our city.

The enormous debt proposed (with enormous interest charges) is not just a danger, it represents huge resources that will not be available to do other good things, some apparent now but many that may not be apparent for a decade; good things that may provide immeasurably more benefit to the city than a road train built on the mirage of last century's hopes, dreams and crazy debt fuelled spending.

 We want the Trams - if you're disappointed in the way it's being handled offer assistance (presuming of course you know what you're talking about) rather than derisery comment based on rumours and supposition - Edinburgh is brilliant, make it better.

Why do you all insist on hiding behind pseudonyms are you worried that your spite and distaste for actually a glorious concept admittedly handed to an inept contractor and delivered by a somewhat inexperienced management team is likely to turn out to be a successful transport solution?  Or maybe you are resigned to the fact that you only hear from equally bitter depressed individuals who think having an integrated transport system that a successful growing city deserves is a bad thing?

As for the sell on of additional rolling stock - would you rather the initial investment was left to gather dust and no attempt was made to recoup the cost?

I don't propose to start a frankly pointless 'to and fro' comment arguement but mearly to wake you up to the possibility that many of us can not wait for the Tram system to be up and running and believe hole heartedly that the benefits will be appraent for many years to come.

You're clearly new around here, Colin ;-)

Thanks for dropping in. 

So there is actually someone out there who wants a 'tram' - I am glad top have found someone, as in all the last two weeks delivering election leaflets, I have found not one single voice who wanted the light railway - not the trams that everyone fondly remembers - to be forced through the middle of this historic city and destroying the environment for so many of the residents.   The Council's own figures give the deeply depressing statistic that some 134,500 households (at least 269,000 people) will suffer much worse pollution and noise as a result of this ill-planned scheme.
Those of us who lead the opposition to the project are doing so, not because we are against Edinburgh having trams, but because this project has been appallingly conceived, badly planned and incompetently delivered.   The city tax payers will be paying for this madness for the next thirty years.   When Council Tax rises and services are cut to finance the project I wonder if you will really be so supportive?

A song about Edinburgh trams. Thought it might interest you :)

Peace and love.