Smart Transport

Edinburgh City Council launches mapping tool to boost active travel plans during lockdown

Edinburgh City Council has launched its Commonplace mapping tool to let people share suggestions for walking, cycling and wheeling safely as Covid-19 lockdown measures are eased.

The tool has been launched in collaboration with Sustrans and it will be used throughout June to allow residents to highlight ‘pinch points’ where emergency measures could help people maintain physical distancing safely on foot, bike or wheelchair.

Responses received through the Commonplace platform will be recorded and used to inform plans, though temporary interventions that will have the greatest benefit to public health and can be delivered in a short timeframe will be prioritised. The website will close for comments on June 29.

Cllr Lesley Macinnes, Transport and Environment Convener, said: "We’ve hit the ground running with an extensive programme of measures to help people observe physical distancing while walking, cycling and wheeling, and to support them to continue to do so once restrictions are eased.

“This week we were delighted to receive a fantastic £5m funding award from Transport Scotland, via Sustrans, which will help us to go even further to achieve these aims.

"We’ve seen a real increase in cycling and walking since the beginning of lockdown and we want to help this to continue as we return to a sense of normality.

“We’ve already had an incredibly enthusiastic response from residents who also want to see calmer, safer conditions maintained as we return to normal. This new tool is a great opportunity to involve the very people who use our streets to help shape our plans."

Existing temporary road closures in Silverknowes, Greenbank, Cammo and Leith have been welcomed by community members, creating welcoming and safe spaces for pedestrians and cyclsts of all ages and abilities.

The Council’s overall approach will be implemented to support the Scottish Government’s phased approach to lifting lockdown.

All measures that are introduced will be closely monitored and refined or adapted in response to any issues, where necessary.

The design process for any intervention will consider all road users, particularly people with mobility or visual impairments, and will seek feedback from organisations including RNIB, Edinburgh Access Panel and Living Streets.

Watch now: Connecting Policy To Solutions Virtual Conference 2021

Smart Transport Conference returned on June 8th & 9th, to facilitate pivotal discussions on the future of transport. 

The UK’s most senior public and private sector transport leaders discussed the impact of Covid-19, achieving the Government’s decarbonisation ambitions, the need for more efficient living and better health, and much more.

Keynote speakers included: 

Kwasi Kwarteng, secretary of state at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), who spoke on BEIS's approach to decarbonising transport, particularly the electrification of the vehicle industry

Keith Williams, co-author of the Williams-Shapps Plan for Rail, who spoke on rail’s role in integrated transport, decarbonisation and innovation.

Rachel Maclean, parliamentary under-secretary of state at the Department for Transport, who discussed the future of transport and its pivotal role in a ‘green recovery’ from the pandemic.


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