At the city council’s Transport and Environment Committee meeting on 28 January, next steps of phase 1 of the review of parking was approved (pdf). The report is over 200 pages and has implications for Shandon, Slateford and Hutchison, as well as a small corner off Colinton Road so Gavin Corbett explains what it means. The background to the parking review will be familiar to many people. As traffic volumes have grown in Edinburgh so too have parking pressures.
As some of you may already know the council’s Transport Committee signed off the final stage of the city-wide parking review in September. Of the 124 areas surveyed Shandon emerged as the third highest pressured area in the whole city (hardly a surprise to those of us who live here). Since pressure is also getting worse, year on year, the status quo is clearly not an option. The independent researchers recommended parking controls for Shandon and a project timeline has been set out to bring that about over the next 18 months (most of that is down to the legal process, which is sadly not something we can avoid).
One of our local councillors Gavin Corbett, summarises a lengthy report recently published on parking. Parking is a topic that is seldom away from my in-box as a councillor, with queries coming in all shapes and sizes. It’s a topic that excites strong opinions. So getting the response right is important. Let’s start with a basic arithmetical point. In a city with finite space, car parking has to compete with a number of other priorities: sometimes directly, in case of bins and bike stores, sometimes more indirectly in case of safe crossing points, trees or green space, space for people to sit or children to play.
Apologies for the big gap in any updates but, frankly, there hasn’t been too much “news” while the gears of the system slowly grind away. After the petition submitted in 2017 (signed by over 300 residents), the council sensibly decided it wanted to take a wider look at parking pressures throughout the city rather than doing this on a piecemeal basis in individual areas. While a joined up policy is likely the best option going forward, it did mean that there was a frustrating lack of progress at the local level.
Our petition has now closed. We would like to send our thanks to everyone who signed it. We are pleased to say that we received 301 signatures online and 2 additional signatures by hand from all over the Shandon area. This represents about a fifth of households in the area (although there may have been multiple signatures from single households) which is a very good response rate. It clearly shows there is an increased appetite to have this problem looked at again.