Historic Edinburgh street to get European boulevard feel

Historic Edinburgh street to get European boulevard feel

Cars are set to be banned from George Street in Edinburgh as part of transformation plans to open up the space for pedestrians, bikes, and outdoor seating areas.

The historic street will be given a “European boulevard feel” to better accentuate the surrounding A-listed buildings.

Bus stops will be located in side streets.

Car parking will remain for blue badge holders and for shop loading access.

The plans form part of City of Edinburgh Council’s 10-year transformation project, which will see the city centre become largely car-free by 2030.

Lesley Macinnes, transport committee convener, said: “George Street has essentially become a car park.

“We have this phenomenal street, of immense beauty, that has become obscured – and the use of George Street has changed over the years, from retail towards hospitality, and we’re certainly seeing a spine of people using that as a car park.

“Why, as a city, would we not want to showcase that beautiful street?”

Projects under the Edinburgh City Centre Transformation include the Meadows to George Street and city centre west to East Link schemes, which will transform walking and cycling routes, and other connections across the city centre.

These schemes also support the city mobility plan, a 10-year strategy to overhaul transport and mobility in the capital to deliver a sustainable, net zero carbon and inclusive future.

The design team for the new plans for George Street has included Tetratech and LDA Landscape Design.

Further consultation is to take place over the next month, the outcome of which will inform a final design proposal, to go before the council’s transport and environment committee in April with construction set to start in the summer.

Reporting by local democracy reporter Joseph Anderson.

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