Tram traffic chaos in streets where you live?--You read it here first.
For many years a small group of people in the city were saying the tram project as designed, planned and being forced through would lead to enormous increases in traffic in RESIDENTIAL streets because the tram could not share road space with traffic, and as it was due to annex all the major historic routes, the traffic would have to be forced from these roads and into residential roads.
There was and is no alternative.
The residents used air quality levels as a 'marker', or indicator for the traffic levels expected because the rises in air pollution correlate, in a city like Edinburgh, very closely to rises in traffic. After all they haven't yet built any steelworkson the meadows or polymer chemical plants at Inverleith---- so as there own figures tell them, 86% plus of the worst air pollutants in Edinburgh are created by traffic.
We say 'EXPECTED' because we got these figures from THE COUNCIL'S own report (published as far back as 2003), which can be found elsewhere on our site do admire the cover in fashionable green and play the 'spot the deliberate error' game to find the Overhead line system powering the tram emerging from some (not yet felled) trees
The relevant part of this report stated (to save trawling through the whole thing you can see just the extract here) , that BECAUSE of the tram being built 139,500 MORE households across Edinburgh would have WORSE air quality by 2026 (Though they had expected the tram to be running by 2010 of course) ---that is 16 years AFTER the tram starts up--because of 'increased congestion'.
This is not "...kind of, sort of increased congestion' just sort of 'because...well everyone knows congestion will get worse and worse anyway" (as former Tram leader Gordon Mackenzie once seemed to believe in a meeting of the Transport, Infrastructure and Environmental Committee) --but because building the tram as planned (Too big, fast, fat and heavy) we CREATE this congestion.
It gets worse OVER A NUMBER OF YEARS after being opened for more and more streets acrooss the city, until 139,500 households (not people) are worse off---that is well over half of the city---than they would have been if we had not built it.
If you are NOT worse off in 2030 you will be in the minority ---or you would have been had they managed to build the whole planned system. Of course the flawed scheme enjopyed flawed planning and management and they failed to do this, so things may not be as bad as that 65%plus of EVERYONE in the city having worse air, congestion, noise and degredation to their streets.
They're only taking out the most vital central section bits of arterial route and quietly transferring it to avenues, closes, crescents and streets.
This traffic and it's pollution creates illnesses in the young and old, and even causes deaths, that is why for many decades town planning has revolved around controlling traffic flows and segregating traffic to SEPARATE IT from where people live.
Uniquely, Edinburgh has created a project, labelled it a tram, which, in reality, is an uncontrolled, unregulated, unsupervised and un-measured experiment to discover what increases in illness, chronic respiratory conditions and even deaths may result from injecting huge traffic flows into residential streets.
But in respect of those now realising what the York Place work means for them and who missed the warnings a few years back here is another prediction----
Pretty soon you can expect to hear that 'bad as this is' it is only 'temporary' and when 'finished' things will get 'back to normal'.
When finished York Place will have lost two central lanes permanently --tram rail cannot have traffic flowing on it.
While some traffic will be able to use the street when this is finished; do not be folled into thinking it will 'go back to normal' ...ever.
If anything, for the wider New Town and far beyond, this is closer to the 'new normal' than what has now been lost to the 'Project'.
The only temporary thing about the tram project are the promises made by a bankrupt administration--- the only permanent things are the problems it brings.