Spaces for People — Local Audit by Living Streets Edinburgh

View of crowded pavement in Bruntsfield Place

In late October, volunteers for Living Streets Edinburgh carried out an audit on the Spaces for People scheme. The audit covered the corridor from Tollcross to Morningside Station and the full report is available as Audit of ‘Spaces for People’ provision: A702 Tollcross to Morningside Station (PDF).

The report contains many detailed suggestions on potential improvements as well as some more general conclusions. These have been sent to council officers and Living Streets Edinburgh hopes they will be taken account of when further adapting the interventions.

Overall the report is really positive about the improvement in walking conditions. These include:

  1. ‘movement’ space while maintaining social distancing;
  2. ‘social’ space (for standing chatting etc) while maintaining social distancing;
  3. queuing space while maintaining social distancing;
  4. ‘buffer’ space away from vehicles; and
  5. narrower carriageways, making (formal and informal) crossing of the main road easier and safer.

 Living Streets Edinburgh wants to see more measures of this sort introduced to other busy streets under the Spaces for People scheme.  

Living Streets Edinburgh is disappointed that little has yet been done to reduce the time people have to wait to cross the road at pedestrian crossings or to remove pavement clutter. It estimates that less than 30% of the £5 million budget for Spaces for People has been allocated to carrying out ‘walking measures’ and it wants to see more emphasis on encouraging walking and social distancing.

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