Or should that be When will it even begin?
With thanks to Greener Leith for alerting us to this, Edinburgh Council has put off until Autumn 2015 a decision about extending the trams northwards. Meanwhile, Leith Central CC, and (we assume) just about every Leith resident, business and visitor, is sick fed up with the ongoing delays to repairing Leith Walk.
We understand that some of the delay is due to the St James Centre renewal and its potential effect on tram routes from York Place to the top of Leith Walk. (See Ian Buchanan’s remarks on page 2 of our February minutes.) That is, Leith Walk uphill from McDonald Road will not be tackled in the near future, while the stretch from McDonald Road to Pilrig Street is at the design stage.
However, Leith Central CC has repeatedly called on Edinburgh Council to get on with the repairs now, using the budget already set aside for this. While St James Centre work is in progress (one lane of Leith Street was closed while trenches were dug into it this week), LCCC believes that trams will not come for years. (The delay to the decision is further evidence.) So there would be time to repair the road surface now, even if it is later used as a foundation (or even ripped up in years to come) for tram tracks.
(This post was written by LCCC’s minutes secretary/webmaster, who frequently cycles from the West End to Leith and back. He appreciates the new smooth surfaces north of Pilrig Street, and sympathises with any other road user whose life – or even just their vehicles’ suspension – has been endangered by potholes on Leith Walk.)