We had hoped to carry out the main consultation for City Plan 2030 in the first half of 2019. However, this is now not possible. The main consultation for City Plan 2030 is now expected to take place in the latter half of 2019. We will publish a new Development Plan Scheme in August 2019 which will include the new timetable.
Until then, we will use this time to gather and build on our evidence and studies for Choices for City Plan and hold further engagement events in local places around the city. In the meantime, watch this space and keep up to date with the project by:
As part of our display in the Central Library on George IV Bridge (running until the end of the month!) we’ve shown parts of old plans and brochures for Edinburgh since the 1940’s. We would like to share some more of our planning past on this blog, to see what City Plan 2030 will follow on from.
The first item we’ve shared is the proposed Development Plan Review from 1965, an update of our very first 1957 City of Edinburgh Development Plan!
This was a early type of consultation document, written to show the main issues faced at the time, and what the planners of the day wanted to do about them, in an accessible brochure. It refers to a number of similar issues to those we are trying to tackle today, such as how growth affects the character of the city, where to direct new growth, and concerns around increased traffic.
Looking at the contents of this Review, they took a very different approach to dealing with these issues than we would today but had a lasting impact and in large part led to the shape of the city as we know it.
City region and population
In 1965 around 476,400 people lived in the city. (mid-2017 estimate – 513,210) The Review set a target to limit this number going over 491,600 by 1985.
Early on, a Regional Plan is proposed to direct at least some growth outside of Edinburgh and keep the population within this limit.
This early hint toward a Regional Plan would eventually lead to today’s SESplan for South-East Scotland, with Edinburgh at its centre. It also sets targets for housing numbers and a plan for where growth should be allowed without pushing people and jobs away from the city.
Major new roads are proposed to reduce traffic jams linked to more people owning cars and cuts to train services. The most radical ideas of the time were plans for an inner ring road, two new radial roads going into the city and a new city bypass.
Of these, only the city bypass was built and part of one radial road – the West Approach Road, but thankfully it’s not the long road link to the M8 that was hoped for. The inner ring road was later cancelled after a campaign from local groups including the Cockburn Association due to the impact it would have had on the historic city and on local housing.
Traffic and congestion is still a challenge, but public transport, active travel and better use of public space is now seen as the way to handle it. The ongoing City Centre Transformation Project and City Mobility Plan will soon share our actions which City Plan 2030 will help to deliver.
Urban renewal and housing
The number of houses required between 1965 and 1985 was estimated at 169,350. At this time there was a focus on new housing in clearance areas which were perceived as having outdated or slum housing.
Clearing and renewing areas of unfit housing was seen as a public responsibility. Comprehensive development areas were drawn up to re-plan entire districts.
One such district is St James Square, which was cleared for the St James Centre, which itself has recently been demolished for replacement by a new centre. St James was always to include new shopping and office space. These plans also made space for the ring road and a modern replacement for St Mary’s Cathedral, which did not go ahead.
In later years there has been regret over the loss of many older districts, but this was driven by a great push for social progress at the time. Today, St James is within the New Town Conservation Area and the World Heritage Site, which goes some way to protecting the special value of our places.
Click on the titles below to download the full brochure for more than what we have covered in this blog post, and the 1974 proposals map for the plan which was approved with some changes since the 1965 Review, such as removal of the New Town ring road section.
The 1965 Review shows how development plans can have a lasting impact on the city for decades to come. As we prepare City Plan 2030 we will be thinking about the impact that planning has and how important it is to involve as many people as possible in helping to shape the final plan.
With more engagement events planned around the city in the coming year, you can sign up for the mailing list by emailing the City Plan team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We’d like this to be the first of a series of Past Plans blog posts, so if there are any particular plans or planning documents you’d like to see us cover please comment below and we can search the archives to see if we can include it in a future post.
As City Plan 2030 moves forward, we are holding more events on key subjects such as the Housing Seminar we shared just over a week ago. The events are attended by people who work in these areas and are a way of sharing and gaining knowledge in specific topics.
Our most recent event was on the subject of visitor accommodation, (such as hotels, short-term lets, hostels and guest houses) dealing with the growth of tourism and the impact on the property market.
We invited those involved in building or running visitor accommodation, or with a stake in this activity. With over 60 people signed up to attend, we heard from a range of perspectives.
The first speaker was Jim Galloway, our Head of Enterprise and Innovation at the Council, who covered the trends in tourist numbers over the last few years, why they have changed, and what issues may affect these numbers in the future.
The next speakers were Dr Mark Robertson of Ryden, Andrew Renouf of GVA and Ian Derrick of GVA who discussed the current state of the property market for this sector.
This was followed by a discussion session with input from both industry and community representatives, on the topic of how to address the growth of visitor numbers in City Plan 2030, with a range of views given and discussed.
The final speaker was Keith Miller from our City Plan team who gave an outline of City Plan 2030 and how we will be involving more people in the discussion in the future.
The event was closed by Councillor Lezley Cameron who rounded off the event and addressed a few key points and issues which came up.
Next year we intend to hold a further event on the subject of the retail and leisure sector. Watch this space! If you’d like to give us your own views on this subject, let us know in the comments, or email us at email@example.com
Last week, pupils from Firrhill High School, spent two days with the planning service to experience the range of work we do and to give us their ideas on what the city could be like in the future. The programme included:
Mapping how young people use the city
Sharing photos of their favourite places
Using the Place Standard to assess how the city works as a place for young people
An exercise on what the issues will be for the next Local Development Plan and how best to engage young people
The feedback from the school was really positive, with the young people having the opportunity to learn more about the work of the planning service and the challenges for the city. It certainly has given us lots to think about for the next local development plan.
We were also delighted to hear that the group of pupils who visited us, won first place as part of the school’s business placement exercise.
On 27 February we held Community Council training on three topics. The topics were chosen by the Community Councils and included planning enforcement, social media and tree protection. Thanks to everyone who came along and took part in the discussions. For information we have included links to the presentations below.
The next Community Council training is planned to take place on 14 June 2018, and will focus on the next Local Development Plan and how this will shape the future development of the City (see presentation above).