THIS week sees the start of work on Edinburgh Council’s Quality Bike Corridor scheme, which runs between the Mound and the University of Edinburgh’s King’s Buildings campus.
The scheme will include new or extended cycle lanes along the length of the route, and also three new sections of bus lane. Modifications to existing parking and loading restrictions will also be undertaken so that the new lanes are not blocked as often by parked vehicles.
The corridor is a key route for cyclists commuting in and out of the city centre, and for staff and students travelling between the King’s Buildings and other University of Edinburgh campus sites. It also connects with Sustrans National Cycle Route 1, which runs through the Meadows and down the Mound.
Marshall Poulton, Head of Transport, said: “As a signatory to the Charter of Brussels, the City of Edinburgh Council is committed to helping encourage residents to find healthy and environmentally friendly ways of getting around the city, as demonstrated by the Council’s consistent record of investment in promoting cycling. It’s an exciting time as work begins on this important new Bike Corridor in south Edinburgh, especially as figures show this area of the city is home to a very sizeable proportion of people who choose to commute by bike.”
Work on the first phase of the scheme is expected to take around 12 weeks. Construction of a second phase will take place in summer, and will see improvements for pedestrians and cyclists at the Mayfield Road / West Mains Road junction outside the King’s Buildings campus.
A public consultation exercise was carried out previously for the scheme, and more than 75 per cent of all those who responded either supported or strongly supported the Quality Bike Corridor proposals.
The Council has also made a commitment to spend a minimum of 5% of its Transport budget on cycling for 2012/13, an increase of around 70% on 2011/12. This will help to develop a ‘Family Network’ of safe, signed, cycle routes across the city, along with other improvements for cyclists.
The start of work on the Quality Bike Corridor comes just days after a new 20mph Limit Pilot came into force in South Central Edinburgh – the first of its kind in Scotland.