Our two objections to the proposed parking plans

We’ve previously highlighted the plans to introduce parking controls and have encouraged residents and local businesses to engage in the consultation, which closed yesterday, Sunday 5th December 2021.

As a community council, we have written the following two specific objections and look forward to further engagement with the City of Edinburgh Council.

N6 – Abbeyhill  regarding the Abbeyhill Colonies, Rossie Place, Edina Place, Bothwell Street, the north side of London Road  and the eastern side of Easter Road

Read the N6 proposals on edinburgh.gov.uk

We object to the TRO insofar as it includes within the new N6 Abbeyhill zone the part of the N6 area which is within the LCCC area, consisting of the Abbeyhill Colonies, along with Rossie Place, Edina Place, Bothwell Street, the north side of London Road and the eastern side of Easter Road.

We consider that this area, the “Abbeyhill LCCC area” should have instead been added to the N1 Hillside zone because it is  a contained area separate from the rest of zone N6 by  the railway line to the north, London Road to the south and Meadowbank Retail Park to the east.  None of the streets  (save London Road itself) allow access for traffic or pedestrians to the adjoining Meadowbank area to the east so, if it were to be part of Zone N6, permit holders who were unable to park in this area would have to drive back onto the busy Easter Road and along London Road to either the wider Abbeyhill area or Meadowbank. At any time, this could involve a long walk home but, at night, this could be an unsafe practice.

By contrast, if this area were to be part of Zone N1, it would be easier for residents unable to find a place within the “Abbeyhill LCCC area” to park in the eastern part of Montgomery Street/Hillside area as it would simply involve driving across Easter Road to park, and having parked, a short walk home. This option would not be available to residents of the Abbeyhill LCCC area from Monday to Friday during working hours unless the area is within N1. This is of course the current situation and the issues arising for Abbeyhill LCCC residents in not  being able to access this parking within easy walking distance of their home are, we would suggest, already apparent from the current density of  parking in the area.

The geographical alignment of the area with Hillside is demonstrated by the fact that is (unlike the other parts of N6), part of the Leith Walk council ward, part of Edinburgh North and Leith constituency and within the  LCCC area. We understand that residents had previously asked that N1 would be extended to include the area, and had been told by Council officers that it would be. Residents have not received any explanation as to why Zone N1 has not been extended to include the Abbeyhill LCCC area .

We note the introduction of the P001 Rossie St Permitted Parking Area in response to some residents’ concerns and welcome  that Visitors Permits  are being made  available to residents for their guests. However inevitably there are boundary issues with the rest of the Abbeyhill LCCC area – we are aware  of some local concerns that Maryfield , Maryfield Place and the eastern side of Alva Place appear to be omitted from the P001 area . We however note that at p70 of the TRO  the P001 Rossie St PPA is listed and with it as additional addresses or roads eligible for Permit Parking Area permit: Earlston Place, London Road (Nos 1 to 49), Maryfield Place, Maryfield.

We understand from Andrew Mackay of City of Edinburgh Council that this means that residents of these streets will also be above to apply for permits to park in the P001 PPA and we welcome this as a sensible  way to preserve the unity of the colonies area . We pointed out to him that it seemed from the map that the eastern side of Alva Place was outside the P001 PPA area as it has some shared use and resident bays marked on it. Andrew Mackay indicated that he had thought Alva Place was entirely in P001 , but for the avoidance he suggested we mention this in this objection  so this could be picked up and it be made clear that all residents of Alva Place will be entitled to apply for P001 permits- so we hope this can be clarified- ideally when the whole Abbeyhill LCCC area  is moved to N1.  

N7 – Pilrig & Leith Walk regarding  Spey Street Lane and Spey St

Read the N7 proposals on edinburgh.gov.uk

Our objection is to the double yellow lines on both sides of the Spey Street Lane and the north west side of Spey Street.

These lanes house the workshops of 10-15 local businesses ranging from car mechanics to a bath-repair specialist with a Royal Warrant. They provide useful services to the local community who are in the main supportive of their plight. The TRO recognises this by allowing garage permits to 3 car mechanics on Spey St Lane (G009-011) and one garage mechanic on Spey St (G012).  

Putting double yellow lines on both sides of these lanes would be likely to kill off these businesses. These places of work are relatively affordable, provide local employment and are exactly the kind of premises that needs to be allowed to continue to function if CEC is serious about the 20-Minute Neighbourhood as set out in The City of Edinburgh Council’s recent draft  2030 Climate Strategy. Because of the narrowness of the Spey Street Lane in particular and being in the Pilrig Conservation Area, the buildings cannot be easily re-purposed and could quickly fall into disrepair.

By contrast we note that Manderston St, where LCCC support the introduction of garage permits as a hopefully effective measure to accommodate the  needs of local  vehicle mechanic businesses – there are few or no  double yellow line  in front of the garages and instead recognition (by maroon lines)  that garage permit parking will be permitted within  a text based TRO.

Given this,  we do wonder if the presence of these double yellow lines is a cartographical error (and Andrew Mackay has indicated that the consultant was asked to remove them) but, as it may not be, we feel bound to make a formal objection and call for the following changes.

Re Spey Street on the north west side (fronted by  garages): omit double yellow lines in front of any garages/business premises; which we understand to be  2 car mechanics, 2 upholsterers, and a  bath repair man.

Re Spey Street Lane: we would like to object to having double yellow lines along both sides of the lane. Omit double yellow lines in front of any garages/business premises; which we understand to be  3 car mechanics, Tool library, fireplace restorer, an electrician, 2 carpenters, one right down at the bottom of the lane.