An updated Draft Management Plan is being prepared by the City of Edinburgh Council, Historic Environment Scotland and Edinburgh World Heritage. It identifies issues and opportunities within the site and presents an action plan for implementation over a five-year period.
The issues identified include:
care and maintenance of buildings and streets
control and guidance and contribution of new development
awareness of World Heritage Site status
influence and sense of control
This is your opportunity to tell us what matters to you and to help us to best address these issues. We want to hear your thoughts on how the World Heritage Site has been looked after, what works well and what we could be doing better.
We specifically want to know whether you feel we are doing enough to protect and enhance the Site, and any other ideas or suggestions which you may have.
In 2021, Scottish Government legislation allowed councils to have a short-term let control area. In a control area, this means if that if a flat or a house, which is not the home you live in, is used for a short-term let, you will need planning permission.
Edinburgh was the first council in Scotland to apply for a short-term control area, which has now been in place since 5 September 2022 and covers the whole of the Council’s area.
The amount of STL accommodation has grown significantly in the last ten years and Edinburgh is recognised as an area that has greater pressures than other parts of the country.
An entry for Edinburgh’s City Centre Transformation, which will create a vibrant and people-focused capital city centre, won ‘Best Plan’ in Scotland. This was submitted by design consultants Jacobs.
Our other finalist, the Green Blue Network Project, which was entered by consultants Atkins, takes a holistic approach to sustainable water management and climate change adaptation. This will also go through to the UK/ Ireland National RTPI awards.
Both projects have involved significant partnership working with organisations like Sustrans, Scottish Water, SEPA, Paths for All, Scottish Wildlife Trust and NatureScot.
Meanwhile at the Scottish Transport Awards multiple Edinburgh projects, as well as Edinburgh Trams and Lothian Buses, have just been shortlisted for awards;
Most effective in Road Safety, Traffic Management and Enforcement:
Edinburgh Trams – Permit+
Best Practice in Travel to School and Work Schemes:
The LEZ aims to reduce air pollution, since it presents a significant threat to public health. It is especially harmful to young children, the elderly and those suffering from pre-existing conditions, including heart and lung diseases.
LEZs are being introduced across Scotland’s four largest cities: Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen and Dundee in response to dangerous levels of air pollution generated by road traffic. The LEZ will improve public health by discouraging the most polluting vehicles from entering an area.
Following the consultation, an objection period ran from 1 February to 1 March 2022. During this time we received 26 objections and 1 letter of support. Objections were from a mixture of individuals, businesses and organisations including some Community Councils.
The most common objections were about;
the LEZ boundary should be wider or smaller
the process for assessing local exemptions
the modelling/evidence base & how robust it was
The next step for the LEZ is to submit the proposal to Scottish Ministers for approval. Assuming approval is granted by Ministers, the LEZ will be introduced on 31 May 2022. There will be a two year ‘grace period’, meaning it won’t be enforced until June 2024.
The proposal follows a consultation with the public as well as industry bodies.
The majority of respondents to the consultation were in favour of a control area, with 88% supporting the principle of it, and 85% supporting the entire City of Edinburgh Council area to be included.
A report of the consultation forms part of our Report to Planning Committee.
The designation cannot come to effect without the approval of Scottish Government. A request will be submitted to the Scottish Government requesting that the new powers are implemented in the whole of the Edinburgh area.
If the government agree with this approach, and the new legislation is implemented in the city, it will require residential property owners wholly letting a property which is not their principle home as an STL in the local authority area, to apply for planning permission for a ‘change of use’ to a short-term let.
Short-term lets of private rooms or shared rooms where the property is the only or principal home of the host will not be affected by the control area requirement. This allows for house swaps at holidays and also for the host to let out the entire property when on holiday or working away, provided the property remains their only or principal home.
If approval is given by the Scottish Government, the designation will be publicised in advance of coming into effect.
The introduction of powers to make a control area follows the Council calling for new legislation to tighten up the control of short-term lets to help manage high concentrations of secondary letting where it affects the availability of residential housing and character of a neighbourhood.
Also, it will help to restrict or prevent short-term lets in places or types of buildings where they are not appropriate as well as making sure homes are used to best effect.
Complementary to the control area legislation, the Scottish Parliament has approved legislation which will introduce a new licensing scheme requiring short-term lets to be licensed from July 2024. It will address the issues of safety, anti-social behaviour and noise.
To keep up to date with the Short-term Lets Control Area;