Alison Johnstone, Green MSP for Lothian, has called for an extension to the public consultation on City of Edinburgh Council’s plans to redesign the Picardy Place junction, with one of the City’s key gateways set to be transformed into a large, car-dominated gyratory.
Highlighting community concerns that vehicles will be prioritised over pedestrians and cyclists, that air pollution could rise and public space be lost, Alison, along with Green colleagues and campaigners, is making the case for Edinburgh instead to find a junction design that better accommodates the needs of those travelling by foot or by bike, and addresses hazardous air pollution, in line with both national and local transport strategies.
“Green Councillors have been stressing that these proposals threaten to lock the city centre into very high volumes of private vehicle use, and I strongly agree with campaigners and residents that the multi-lane gyratory system is wholly unsuitable at the gateway to Edinburgh’s World Heritage area.
“I have made repeated pleas to the Scottish Government and Local Authorities to deliver on their claims of support for active travel to reduce pollution and prioritise people-friendly transport infrastructure, and also to give communities far greater say in the planning process. However, yet again this controversy suggests that local views aren’t being considered.
“I am very concerned about the impact on local communities and the reputation of Edinburgh as a whole, and with the current consultation due to close tomorrow (Friday), I believe it must be extended to be able to accurately take account of local views.”