Shops in Edinburgh’s town centres

Did you know that Edinburgh has eight town centres? These are Brunstfield/Morningside, Corstorphine, Gorgie/Dalry, Leith/Leith Walk, Nicolson Street/Clerk Street, Portobello, Stockbridge and Tollcross.

Recently we’ve been asking people about shop uses in their area and what else they would like to see such as cafes, offices or community uses.  As part of this, pupils from Corstorphine Primary and Dalry Primary schools drew what they’d like in their area.  Thanks to the pupils for their great ideas, which you can view below.  

At the moment we are consulting on Corstorphine and Gorgie/Dalry town centres.  We’re holding a a drop-in session on Saturday 10 May 11am to 3pm at Fountainbridge Library if you’d like to speak to us about Gorgie/Dalry or ask us about any of the town centres.

Corstorphine

Gorgie/Dalry

10,000th on-line application

Last week we received our 10,000 on-line application. Whilst this gave us cause for great celebration (we opened a packet of chocolate biscuits – as only planners would) it is a significant milestone.  The submission of applications electronically is something we have been encouraging for a number of years as this benefits both us and our customers in how we handle their application.

Chocolate biscuits - other types of biscuits are available
Celebratory chocolate biscuits  (other brands of chocolate biscuits are available)

Last year, the Scottish Government set out the savings people make by submitting on-line. In general applicants save £200 on average with planning authorities saving £50 on average per application. This not only means savings to us and our customers but it is also good for the environment by reducing the amount of printing, copying and packaging.

Submitting applications on-line is one part of ensuring our customers have greater access to planning information.  This includes allowing you to view and comment on applications on-line and read key documents such as the Local Development Plan and planning guidance. This is all supported by increased access to the internet through computers and free wi fi in Council buildings, libraries and neighbourhood offices. In time, we will see the regular Development Management Sub-Committees and Planning Committees webcast when you can watch all the action from the comfort of your armchair or on the bus.

February 2014 Planning Committee

Princes Street

At our meeting on 27 February, the Planning Committee agreed to relax planning policy for Princes Street to allow cafes and restaurants to open up alongside the shops to make it more of a destination.  A more flexible approach to Shandwick Place, Castle Street, and Queensferry Street has also been agreed.  Shopping will always be one of the main reasonsPrinces Street why people want to be in the city centre but by allowing more cafes and restaurants in certain areas it will encourage more people to spend time enjoying the spectacular views and unique atmosphere.  Along with new shops opening, the tram set to run, and large parts of George Street being given to pedestrians, it is an exciting time for our city centre and the recent launch of the ‘This is Edinburgh’ promotional campaign will help increase footfall in the area.

Edinburgh Street Design Guidance

An attractive environment also helps to make a successful place and the Council is committed to providing high quality streets, pavements and public spaces.  The Planning The ShoreCommittee agreed that consultation should soon start on our new Edinburgh Street Design Guidance.  The draft guidance is clear that people should be put before cars when new streets are designed or existing streets are changed. Edinburgh has been at the forefront of street design since the 1990s and it will be interesting to hear your views on our latest proposals.

The Forth Bridge

The Forth Bridgeprogress of the nomination to make The Forth Bridge a world heritage site was also reported to the Committee.  It will not be until the summer of 2015 that we find out if the bid has been successful but it was encouraging to see how far it has already come.

You can read the all the Planning Committee reports in full online.

Councillor Ian Perry.  Convener of the Planning Committee

Royal Mile Community Drop In Day 8 February

On Saturday 8th February, we’ll be hosting a Royal Mile Community Drop In Day at the Tron Kirk, where you can:

  • Catch up with the Royal Mile Project Team and find out how the project is developing
  • Find out about and get involved in the wonderful range of other projects, activities and attractions on and around the street
  • Find out about community grantsRoyal Mile view - courtesy of duncan harris
  • Watch the painting of a giant mural depicting a Tron Kirk Hogmanay
  • Have the opportunity to be one of the faces painted into the mural
  • Get involved in community mapping
  • Listen to stories about the Royal Mile
  • Enjoy the kids corner with traditional toys, colouring competition and more
  • Find out about future plans for the Tron Kirk and other fascinating local buildings

The kirk will be open from 10am to 4pm and all are welcome.

Royal Mile drop in day flyer (image courtesy of Duncan Harris)