Improving access to Waverley Station

Proposals to further improve access to Waverley Station will be considered by councillors this month.

The Department for Transport (DfT) has been working with Network Rail to better manage vehicle movements within stations to improve passenger safety and welfare.

Following discussions between the City of Edinburgh Council and Network Rail, the proposed solution is to allow access into Waverley Station for Network Rail-authorised taxis and specialised disabled organisation vehicles via a controlled entry system.

At the same time, works on Waverley Bridge and Market Street are being proposed to provide replacement facilities for those previously provided within Waverley Station, mainly taxi and passenger drop-off points. This comes as a direct consequence of Network Rail's proposal to manage vehicular access to Waverley Station by means of a barrier system.

This controlled access will not, however, be able to accommodate the current level of taxis entering the station at peak times - three per minute. 

In light of the above, the Council has been working on a raft of measures designed to mitigate congestion and improve access in the area surrounding the Capital's main railway station.

These designs include:

  • Provision for taxi stacking on Market Street to allow controlled access into Waverley Station;
  • A new roundabout at the junction of East Market Street and Jeffrey Street to improve access to the new pick up/drop off bays;
  • Improvements to footways, kerb alignment and pedestrian crossingsin order to enhance the pedestrian environment on Waverley Bridge; and
  • Improvements to footways, surfacing and drainage on Market Street.

Councillor Lesley Hinds, Transport Convener, said: "The Council has been working very closely with Network Rail and I'm pleased to say we've come a long way since last summer when it seemed as though access to Edinburgh's principal rail hub could be seriously compromised, particularly for less mobile station users.

"The designs the Council has produced, coupled with Network Rail's investment into new lifts and escalators, will make it much easier for everyone to access Waverley Station as well as improving the surrounding area with resurfaced carriageway and footways and a new pedestrian crossing at the junction of Market Street and Waverley Bridge.

"With up to three taxis a minute entering the station at peak times, it's crucial that we find ways of managing the traffic on Market Street and Waverley Bridge. The proposals up for approval offer a range of measures which will do just this, as well as enhance the amenity of the whole area."

A report detailing these proposed measures and requesting elected members' permission to progress the c. £1 million project will be considered by the Transport and Environment Committee on Tuesday 15 January 2013.

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