Duke Street roundabout works site meeting update

Following a recent site meeting the City of Edinburgh Council Officer responsible for the works issued the following update:

 

 

 

 

 


Dear all,

Thank you for those who attended the site meeting on Friday 29th July 2019 at the former Leith Academy to discuss the main concerns regarding the proposed changes to the junction of Easter Road / Duke Street.

As promised see below a list of the issues raised at both the site meeting and during the June 2019 Leith Links Community Council meeting. I have provided the current response to the concerns with any actions. Some of these were discussed at the site meeting, and some responses have been provided to me today while others we never got round to discussing on site due to time constraints.

Serious concern about both entering and exiting from former Leith Academy building (No. 89b Duke Street) carpark. (this also covers all sub points);

 

Residents will access/egress from the car park across a section of the new footway which will be constructed from a different material and work in the same way as someone exiting from their private driveway across a footway. Drivers should give way to pedestrians (which should already happen at present when exiting from the car park) and proceed to the edge of the carriageway. At this point they will give-way to vehicles on the main carriageway (again similar to how they would at present) and proceed when safe to do so. Upon entering the main carriageway they will be faced with traffic signals to both the left and right directions and these should be treated as normal. Each stop line will have multiple traffic signal heads and most of these will be visible when first exiting the car park and so drivers will have an idea of which traffic is moving before they enter the carriageway. To confirm, it will be possible to access and egress in all directions.

Residents that live in the former Lochend School House building (No. 4 Lochend Road) have similar concerns to above about access;

A yellow box junction is proposed to deter vehicles from queueing over the access into 4 Lochend Road and multiple traffic signal heads will help ensure the traffic signals will be visible from the exit. Again, vehicles exiting the car park will give-way to vehicles on the main carriageway and manoeuvre when safe to do so. Finally, it should be noted that the existing traffic island on Lochend Road will be removed and we will also consider changing the parking restrictions to No Waiting / No Loading (Double Yellow Lines) in front of the car park access (as requested) to ensure waiting vehicles do not hinder access which residents have said is currently a problem.

Residents of Burns Road, Industrial Road and ‘the Colonies’ are concerned about additional traffic due to the proposed banned right turn from Lochend Road into Vanburgh Place;

The right turn from Lochend Road into Vanburgh Place is currently proposed to be restricted for safety reasons given the required traffic signal staging. During the site meeting a resident proposed to permit the right turn by introducing a right turn filter whereby traffic from Duke Street would stop and allow traffic to exit from Lochend Road and turn right. I passed this suggestion onto the Network Planning manager who in turn introduced the suggested filter into the traffic model however it resulted in the junction capacity being reduced considerably and therefore extra queueing on Duke Street in particular. While it is on average only 1 car every 5 minutes, there is a minimum time the filter light would come on for and Duke Street traffic would need to be stopped both before and after this to allow all traffic to clear for the filter traffic. Ultimately with the results it produced it wouldn’t be viable to include the right turn filter.

As such it is still proposed to ban the right turn from Lochend Road into Vanburgh Place for the proposed traffic signal staging to operate as efficiently as possible. Following completion of the works, we will assess the number of vehicles using the above mentioned streets to travel from Lochend Road to Vanburgh Place / East Hermitage Place (and vice versa) and consider what measures would be appropriate although we do note that some residents of The Colonies prefer to use Burns Street for access. For clarity, traffic calming measures could refer to no entry, one way streets,  dead ends, priority systems or speed bumps along with a number of other things however I couldn’t say at this moment what is appropriate.

It was confirmed on site that the 161 vehicles over a 14 hour period filmed travelling from Lochend Road to Vanburgh Place includes people using the roundabout to double back. This equated to 1 vehicle every 5 minutes. Restalrig Road and Easter Road are the nearest obvious alternative routes for local residents and other drivers to use (where feasible) and could both handle 1 extra car per 5 minutes.

We don’t want to make things any more difficult for local residents and so any changes would be best left until the junction works are complete and we can make an assessment based on actual traffic changes; residents already note (as per LLCC meeting notes) that its awkward for drivers to exit from Fingzies Place or Somerset Street onto East Hermitage Place and therefore it’s unclear why people would choose to use that route.

Comments on Measures Under Consideration

 

  1. As above traffic calming measures could mean anything as appropriate, not just speed bumps.

  1. It is currently proposed to retain the eastbound bus stop on Vanburgh Place by creating a lay-by for the bus to pull into. The car club bay at the same location would also remain.
  2. The widening of the access road into the car park is designed to allow vehicles to keep left when exiting so that they can make the right turn manoeuvre easier. It will also allow 2 vehicles to pass when entering the car park area.

  1. It was noted at the LLCC meeting that the toucan crossing on Vanburgh Place would probably be helpful but there were a couple of concerns. To be clear it would form part of the signal controlled junction – the pedestrian crossing would be changed to a toucan crossing to allow cyclists to cross and head up Lochend Road or onto Vanburgh Place towards Easter Road.

  1. Appropriate road markings to protect side access typically means KEEP CLEAR or a yellow box junction.

General Comments

Residents have requested that the bus stops on Duke Street by Tesco and Academy Street are looked at as they seem to cause congestion whenever both bus stops are serviced at the same time. At a glance moving the westbound stop further west towards Tesco entrance will create a greater gap between the stops to allow traffic to pass waiting bus services. The traffic island may need to be relocated but this is something we could do but it will be important to find the correct position to ensure the island doesn’t stop traffic from passing bus services. Vehicles accessing and exiting Academy street further complicate the issue but its certainly worth investigating further.

In addition Lothian Buses have pointed out that the westbound stop on Duke Street at the shops is only 130m away from the next stop at Tesco and doesn’t have an opposite partner. As such they plan to investigate its current use, especially if we are to consider the positioning of the bus stops on Duke Street by Tesco. That space might be better used for loading and parking but its not clear if the school children currently use that stop or the stop previous on Vanburgh Place. Again some investigation work to be undertaken.

A review of the whole area would possibly be best carried out once tram works are complete to allow for any further changes following completion of the tram extension. There are some issues listed which might already be alleviated by the tram works such as the proposed new traffic signals at the end of Manderston Street which might make it less of an attractive route. And so I will pass all of these comments on to the North East Locality for consideration and ask them to provide comment which I can then pass back to LLCC.

The suggestions put forward are on the whole very sensible but unfortunately I’m not able to simply include all of these suggestions as part of my work. I have noted them however and where feasible I will.

Further issues

Residents asked – why widen the pavement so massively outside the Former Leith Academy building.

As before the footway widening outside the former Leith Academy is a result of reshaping the junction so that the propose traffic signal staging will work and  the layout is coherent for drivers. Specifically we needed to separate Duke Street and Lochend Road to create a stagger as currently they are slightly offset which leave a vast junction area with no instruction for drivers. The footway outside the shops on Duke Street will also be widened to almost 4m wide

From Residents concerned about the loss of plants on the roundabout

Please can there be assurances that these will not just be dug up and thrown away, but will be preserved and replanted nearby somewhere locally, as appropriate?  

Having discussed the request with our arborists, they have responded as follows;

The Palms (Cordylines) would not transplant well this time of year and would be out of place on the Links given there aren’t any others there. Furthermore it is unlikely they will survive on the Links at Vanburgh Place due to a number of ongoing issues at that location. There are some Cordylines at the entrance to Lochend Park and they could try and replant them alongside those although I note that’s not exactly close by and they still might not survive without regular irrigation, which they are unlikely to get. They offered them to local residents for private gardens if desired but again they state the root system is not strong and ideally the new home should be prepared first but in this case there wouldn’t be enough time.

Phormium tenax (Flax) would also be difficult to transplant and wouldn’t be in keeping with the Leith Links landscape. Again it could be donated to a resident if desired.

Planters from Leith Walk can be relocated to the junction but they aren’t maintained or irrigated by CEC and as such they advised against this unless residents would like to maintain them. Also, they don’t expect the Maple trees in the planters to grow to maturity, purely due to species choice (they weren’t involved in the procurement of these), and suggest they need regular maintenance which they don’t get a present.

Alternatively they have suggested creating 4 new tree pits as part of the footway widening outside the former Leith Academy to introduce more greenery. And a planter on the footway could be provided although again CEC do not have the resources to continually maintain these so it would need to be filled with something low maintenance. Residents could of course be involved in maintenance and ownership if desired as happens in other parts of the city.

Other Comments Raised at Meeting

How will bin collections in the car park of the former Leith Academy (89 Duke Street) be managed following the changes to the junction.

I have asked Waste & Cleansing for comment however they are still considering this at present. It was noted on site that Waste & Cleansing Department can gain access to the car park area if loading from the main road is no longer suitable.

Works were put on hold to allow time for final details to be confirmed following any further comments from residents and as such the work will not now start until 29th July 2019

I will issue a copy of the final drawing once outstanding matters have been concluded. I hope this has covered everything but if anything has been missed or requires further detail, please do not hesitate to contact me.


Questions and comments can be sent to transportdesign@edinburgh.gov.uk or
TDD, Waverley Court, G.4, 4 East Market Street, Edinburgh, EH8 8BG


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Polite reminder: Leith Links Community Council public meeting

Leith Links Community Council holds its next public meeting on Monday 24 June 2019 from 18:30 in Leith Community Centre.

Our meetings are open to the public and everyone is welcome to attend, with opportunities throughout the meeting for our community to participate.

Our agenda is wide ranging and includes an update from local Police Officers on their work in & around the Leith Links Community Council area and an update on the redesign of the Easter Road / Duke Street / Vanburgh Place / Lochend Road junction by City of Edinburgh Council.

To view the full agenda click here.

 

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LLCC Annual Report 2018-2019

At its AGM on 27 May 2019, Leith Links Community Council presented and adopted its Annual Report covering the past year’s activities. This report is available in paper booklet format around and about in the area, and you are most welcome to download and read here an electronic version LLCC Annual Report 2018-2019.

Volunteer as a Community Councillor

There are many ways to volunteer in our community, one of them is by becoming a Community Councillor on Leith Links Community Council.

Later this year we will be having our 2019 election, which will provide a chance for you to put yourself forward as a Community Councillor for the next three years.

 

 

 

 

To find out more:

 

 

 

The ‘noise in the night’ explained…

Last Wednesday night / Thursday morning (15/16 May) was the night from hell, with both a loud high pitched continuous whining noise, PLUS a constant ear-splitting siren from Seafield sewage works keeping people awake all night from Bonnington to Craigentinny and all points in between (i.e. mainly, the Leith Links area!). This was a record high for noise complaints, and people in our community are angry and frustrated (and tired!).

Naturally Leith Links Community Council reported the matter, as did many individual residents. We have received this report from City of Edinburgh Environmental Protection Dept.

Veolia have investigated and advised me (Council officer) that they had an alarm activation. Their Sludge Import Tank reached its high level and this triggered an audible alarm.  The tank level is higher than normal in order to minimise the overall odour risk within the Seafield site.  It is rare for this alarm to trigger during the night shift as most tanker imports are limited to the day shift – however an overnight import delivery seems to have triggered the alarm.  The alarm stays on until the sludge level within the import tank is reduced (by the processing of sludge through the sludge treatment centre on site).

Veolia shall be reviewing the arrangements for this alarm further today, and will advise me on progress or future actions.  Scottish Water shall also reduce their road tanker imports to Seafield in the short term, which will reduce the rate of level rise within the Sludge Import Tank.

Veolia have apologised for the inconvenience and disturbance caused within the community, which I agreed to pass on to residents who complained.

To add insult to injury, sleepless people have had to stay indoors and keep their windows closed all day yesterday (hottest day of the year so far) due to the overwhelming smell of sewage pervading the local area. What does Seafield have to say about that? They say – we did warn you we were cleaning the tanks…

We think that while it is good to get warnings and explanations, that is not enough. Action is needed. Change is overdue. This community wants to see our Council standing up to Scottish Water / Veolia, and enforcing its own laws and ‘Code of Practice’, to protect our community’s basic quality of life from the endless nuisances caused by Seafield.

City of Edinburgh Council announce road resurfacing programme for Summer 2019

City of Edinburgh Council have announced that a series of streets in the Leith area will be resurfaced over coming weeks.

The roads affected have been prioritised because of their current condition and because the upcoming tram works will prevent any planned resurfacing work from taking place in and around the proposed tram line during the construction period.

The resurfacing works are planned to start on 27th May and will be carried out during weekdays in separate phases in order to minimise disruption to the public. On some traffic sensitive routes, work may be carried out under nightshift to minimise the impact on traffic. Most roads affected will be fully or significantly resurfaced with a select few being only partially resurfaced or patched as required. There will also be some improvements to pedestrian facilities, traffic signal upgrades and renewal of some street furniture.

Listed below are the streets affected along with the proposed month/order of the works and traffic management. Please note this is subject to change following final confirmation from the contractor (MacLay Civil Engineering) next week. Neighbourhood notification letters will be issued to local residents and traders prior to the commencement of each phase.

Street

Month

Treatment

Proposed Traffic Mgmt

Abercromby Place

May

Fully Resurfaced

Road closure. Local diversion

North Leith Sands

May

Fully Resurfaced

Road closure. Local diversion

Albany Street

June

Fully Resurfaced

Road closure. Local diversion

Lindsay Road

June

Fully Resurfaced from North Leith Sands to Portland Street

One-way closure. Local diversion

Broughton Street

June

Full Resurfaced

Northbound Road Closure

Ocean Drive

June

Fully Resurface both northbound lanes from Lindsay Road to roundabout, and southbound bus stop at Holiday Inn

Road closure. Local diversion

East London Street

June

Fully resurface from roundabout to Cochran Terrace

Lane closures

Annandale Street

June

Fully resurface from Haddington Place to roundabout and from roundabout to Hopetoun Street

Road closure in 3 phases. Local diversion

Great Junction Street

June

Fully resurface from Cables Wynd to Henderson Street

Lane closures or Eastbound closure with local diversion

Dalmeny Street

July

Overlay setts in centre of carriageway (retain setts in parking areas)

Road closure. Local diversion

Hopetoun Street

July

Various sections resurfaced

full Road closure. Local diversion

Gordon Street

July

Fully resurfaced and overlay setts on Manderston Street

Road closure. Local diversion

McDonald Road

July

Resurface eastbound bus stop at Papermill Wynd

Lane closure or southbound closure with local diversion

Broughton Road

July

Fully resurfaced from Broughton Primary to Bonnington Road

Road closure in 2 phases. Local diversion

Links Place

July

Fully resurfaced

Road closure. Local diversion

Duncan Place

July

Fully resurfaced

Road closure. Local diversion

Bonnington Road

July

Fully resurfaced from Broughton Road to Corunna Place

Road closure in 3 phases. Local diversion

Academy Street

July

Overlay setts in running lanes (retain setts in parking areas)

Road closure. Local diversion

Newhaven Road

August

Fully resurfaced from Pilrig Street to Pitt Street

Road closure in 2 phases. Local diversion

East Hermitage / Restalrig Rd Junction

August

Fully resurface Junction area

Temporary Traffic Lights and closure of Links Gardens. Local Diversion

Duke Street / Easter Road Junction

August

Fully resurface roundabout and approaches

Temporary traffic lights

Pilrig Street

August

Fully resurfaced from Spey Street to Newhaven Road

Road closure in 2 phases. Local diversion

Easter Road

August

Various sections resurfaced

Various lane closures and temporary traffic lights. Possible road closure required at Albion Road with local diversion

Leith Links Community Council election 2019 | provisional timetable announced

City of Edinburgh Council has announced the provisional timetable for the upcoming Leith Links Community Council elections, with voting day expected to take place on 31 October 2019.

Event

Day

Provisional timeline

Notice of Election (start of nomination period)

-52

9 September

Close of Nominations (forms to Returning Officer)

-31 4pm

30 September

Withdrawal of Nominations

-31 4pm

30 September

Notice of Poll (if required)

-21

10 October

Polling Day

0

31 October

 

You may recall that in 2016 Leith Links Community Council was the only Community Council in Edinburgh to be elected by public vote, when seventeen members of community stood for election to our body of 12 Community Councillors.

Between now and the election period we will doing all we can to encourage & support people to stand as candidates, and should we require a public vote we will be doing as much as possible to get as many voters as possible to cast their votes. In 2016 588 voters had their say, this represented 6.9% of eligible voters.

Reporting noise nuisance from Seafield Waste Water Treatment Plant

A number of months ago we introduced one handy web from on our website which allowed members of our community to report nuisance & intrusive odours from Seafield Waste Water Treatment Plan to City of Edinburgh Council, Scottish Water, Veolia, Scottish Government and the Scottish Parliament.

As we have recently received a significant number of complaints relating to nuisance noise from the plant, we have updated our form, allowing you to report smell and / or noise from the plant.

The form can be accessed by clicking here, and can be used any time, any day.

 

 

Leith Links Community Council Meeting, 29 April, 6:30pm, Leith Community Centre

The next meeting of the Leith Links Community Council will be on Monday 29th April , at 6:30pm in the Leith Community Education Centre, New Kirkgate.

If you live in the area, you are warmly welcomed to attend.

Please find the Agenda for the next meeting here Agenda29.4.19

and minutes of our March meeting  Monday 25 March 2019

 

 

 

Leith Links Play Park

City of Edinburgh Parks Department confirmed yesterday that after discussion with the contractors work on the new Leith Links Play Park will start during w/c 21st April.

This is great news for the area as we come into summer .

The contractors haven’t confirmed how long work will take but I would hope that it will be in use by June? Watch this space for further updates.

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