LCCC RESPONDS TO COUNCIL CONSULTATION ON TRAMS
Leith Central Community has formally responded to the Council’s consultation on extending the route to Newhaven. They have serious misgivings concerning design philosophy, the consultation and delivery processes, and design details.
In broad terms, LCCC is unconvinced that CEC has learned lessons from previous tram-related mistakes, or established procedures to avoid repeating them.
LCCC is anxious that Leith Walk’s essential and attractive qualities of place may be sacrificed by the single-minded determination to create a tram transit corridor.
Crucial is the need for ‘very careful and detailed advanced planning’, says LCCC. But the planning is already flawed, incomplete, and unlikely to improve sufficiently due to the project’s unnecessarily tight deadlines.
Adequate consultation has already proved impossible owing to such excessive time restrictions.
‘Given that the Tram Act allows for commencement of tram works as late as May 2021,’ says LCCC Vice Chair Harald Tobermann, ‘we cannot see any reason for rushing into this project before the vital questions raised by our submission have been fully answered.’
Tobermann suspects the timing is politically motivated with a view to the next local elections. He and LCCC are calling for more time to be made available.
A badly planned and poorly executed extension of the tramway would, continues Tobermann, imperil a rich ecosystem of ‘communities, businesses, cultural spaces, cafes, pubs and restaurants together with plenty of spontaneous meeting spaces supporting a very densely packed population that is by any measure a highly successful and sustainable example of 21st century city living’.
LCCC’s detailed 10-page response, and 10-page list of questions requiring written replies can be accessed HERE.