City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

Edinburgh Transport Blog

edg writes on 2 March 2012, 10.06pm:

Drivers crossing the Forth Road Bridge are being warned to expect long delays on Saturday 10 and Sunday 11 March while repair work is being carried out.

Restrictions will be in place from 03:00 to 12:00 noon on the morning of both Saturday 10 and Sunday 11 March. Significant queues are expected to build up after 09:00, particularly on Saturday.

Pedestrians and cyclists will be able to cross the bridge using the west footpath/cycleway.

The work has been scheduled at short notice after an inspection identified new damage to nuts on the bolts that hold the vertical hanger ropes to the bridge’s main suspension cables.

The hanger ropes loop around metal castings which are bolted to the cables by 35mm diameter steel bolts, each with a nut at either end. There are 944 of these bolts.

Barry Colford, Chief Engineer & Bridgemaster, said: “We’ve now found cracked nuts at both ends of one of the bolts, which is why we’re...

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Bus Stop Sign by Castle

edg writes on 22 February 2012, 10.04am:

Travelling by bus just became a little less attractive an option after Lothian Buses, following the lead set by train companies,  announced that it will be increasing its ticket prices from 4th March by almost 10% for some tickets.

The rise is well above the rate of inflation (officially at 3.6%).

Ian Craig, Managing Director of Lothian Buses, said it was necessary due to "an extremely challenging time".

"As with the majority of public transport providers, we have had to review our prices as a result of Government funding cuts and rising operating costs. We know price increases are never welcome and this decision has not been taken lightly. It is however a necessary step to ensure we safeguard services as best we can and continue to invest in the quality of our operation and our environmental objectives," said Craig.

From 4th March an Adult Single will rise from £1....

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Cyclists salute at Edinburgh Castle

edg writes on 14 February 2012, 10.13am:

Edinburgh cyclists have been feeling a little more loved after recent decisions at two levels of government - local and Scottish - on the amount of money being budgeted for cycling in coming years.

In Edinburgh, the Council committed to spending "a minimum of 5%" of its transport budget on cycling last week and to increase it by 1% each year. As some have already said, it's a landmark for Scottish cycling. "The City of Edinburgh is...setting the standard for towns and cities across Scotland," said John Lauder of active travel charity SUSTRANS.

Here's what the ECC budget statement says (p.19): "Council agrees that the percentage of transport spend (net of specifically allocated...

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Tram Works Shandwick Place

edg writes on 14 February 2012, 8.52am:

The next phase of tram works has been announced by City of Edinburgh Council.

A new diversion will be introduced for buses in the east end of Princes Street on 3 March while, towards the end of March, work sites at Shandwick Place and Haymarket will be extended to include West Maitland Street. The works are expected to be in place for over a year.

Businesses affected by the works will continue to receive support through the ‘Open for Business’ budget. Additional support was recently announced when Councillors approved a £100,000 injection into the fund, bringing this year’s budget to more than half a million pounds. Local residents, meanwhile, will have an opportunity to find out more about the plans at specially arranged drop-in sessions at St George’s West Church on 15 and 16 February.

The Mound will re-open to taxis, buses,...

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Cyclists crossing High Street

edg writes on 2 February 2012, 10.37am:

The Times newspaper has launched a campaign today to make cities safer for cyclists. The campaign has been spurred by the horrific accident involving one of its news reporters, 27 year old Mary Bowers who was crushed by a lorry three months ago, and who is still not conscious in hospital.

Bowers beaming face is on The Times front page, with the story launching the campaign which sets out an eight point manifesto entitled "Cities Fit For Cycling".

The eight demands include:

  1. Fitting trucks with better sensors and mirrors, and safety bars to prevent cyclists being dragged under the wheels
  2. Make the 500 worst junctions safer - with priortiy traffic lights for cyclists if necessary
  3. Better data: a national audit of who cycles and how they get killed or injured
  4. More funding: 2% of the Highways Agency Budget and...
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Forth Bridge from bike path

edg writes on 23 January 2012, 9.34am:

Network Rail are apparently planning to put a 300 foot high viewing platform on the Forth Rail Bridge.

Last month, Network Rail - the custodians of the bridge - announced that the the 10-year, £130m programme to repaint and refurbish the bridge had been completed, and the huge structure will not need a paint job for another 20 years.

At the busiest times, up to 400 people were working on the bridge at the same time.

A Network Rail spokesperson said that they are looking at taking the existing lifts that had been built into the bridge's three main towers and the platforms built to complete the painting work on the bridge, and making something more permanent, as "an option".

It's still at early stages, but already comparisons are being made with the Eiffel Tower...

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CEC Electric Vehicle

edg writes on 19 January 2012, 8.26pm:

A batch of small electric cars have been added to public sector fleets.

As well as six new electric cars ordered by the Council, four are to be purchased by Lothian and Borders Police and NHS Lothian.

Three charging points will be installed at Council offices, and another three at Edinburgh Napier University. All things going to plan, the new electric vehicles should be on the road this spring.

The electric car purchases were supported with a total of £207,000 from Transport Scotland as part of the Scottish Government’s Electric Vehicle Procurement Support Scheme.

The scheme allows community planning partners to fund the price difference between traditionally-powered vehicles and their electric equivalents.

The Counil's 2009 Sustainable Travel Plan commits it to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 14% by 2012. Much of this...

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actionman writes on 15 January 2012, 9.24pm:

The reports that the hugely unpopular Edinburgh trams project has caused the City Council to cut down some 3321 mature trees right across the city is utterly staggering and a severe blow to anyone who tried to suggest that the project had "green" credentials. 

But what is unbelievable is the way it was done - the lack of appreciation for the feelings of residents and for the citizens of the city in general. Everyone living in and using the city used to appreciate and value these trees as a city-wide environmental bonus.

For Councillor Gordon Mackenzie to say that they will be replaced by other trees utterly misses the point of the argument.   He has authorised the removal of thousands of trees, many of which have taken some one hundred years to grow, so he has effectively destroyed, possibly three hundred thousand...

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edg writes on 12 January 2012, 12.15am:

Edinburgh's trams have been causing more upset, and not just with the forthcoming roadworks (see below).

Residents in Coates Crescent and Atholl Crescent, the Georgian residences that are located between Princes Street and Haymarket Station, woke up to discover that 23 roadside trees were being axed to make way for the Shandwick Place tramstop.

The Council says that 37 "semi-mature" trees will replace the felled ones. According to a report in the Evening News, many locals in neighbouring streets just happened upon the event and were understandably angry and distraught.

However, residents of the des-res Crescents received a letter notifying them of the felling saying:

“The installation of the Shandwick Place tram...

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Dusk in the Pentlands

edg writes on 9 January 2012, 9.14pm:

A special event at Edinburgh Bicycle Co-operative on Thursday marks the UN's International Year of Co-operatives in Scotland on Thursday.

I bought my first mountain bike from Edinburgh Bicycle's Bruntsfield shop back in the early days of the co-operative.

By modern standards the bike was a heavy machine but I loved it. With its fat, knolly wheels it was a match for Edinburgh's potholed and cobbled roads, but more importantly it opened up parts of the city I never considered exploring before.

Like many people I was put off cycling in the city by the amount of motorised traffic. But now I began striking out to edges of Edinburgh along the often muddy, disused railway lines (many now converted into official pedestrian-bicycle paths).

My chunky new machine allowed me to extend my travelling range significantly...

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