Improving cycle links between the Meadows and the Innocent Path

The first phase of a £1.25 million scheme to link the Innocent Path cycleway to the Union Canal towpath via the Meadows is scheduled to get under way from Monday 9 March 2015.

Cycle link under construction between the Meadows and Innocent Path

The project, which is due to last approximately 12 weeks, will include fully segregated sections of cycleway, as well as new cyclist / pedestrian crossings. 

The scheme will also fix a longstanding 'hole' in National Cycle Network Route 1 (previously cyclists would have had to dismount in order to cross Clerk Street) and is an important step in delivering the Council’s ‘family-friendly’ network of cycle routes, which aims to cater for younger, new or less confident cyclists.

Work on the second phase of the project, which will link the Meadows to the Union Canal, is scheduled to take place in 2016. The whole £1.25m scheme is being jointly funded by the Council and Sustrans, who have contributed £500,000. 

The route in the first phase connects North Meadow Walk to the Innocent Path, which follows an old railway route to Duddingston, Brunstane and Musselburgh, using:

  • shared footway and cycleway or cycle path on main roads
  • on-road cycle route on side streets
  • new and relocated crossings on Buccleuch Street and Clerk Street, respectively

Councillor Lesley Hinds, Transport Convener, said: "This is a very exciting project. The upgraded route will form a fantastic addition to our Family Network, making cycling and active travel even more attractive to families and new or less confident cyclists. We had a great response to our consultation on the initial proposals and we look forward to seeing the route well-used once construction is finished."

John Lauder, National Director of Sustrans Scotland, said: “Sustrans is delighted that the first phase of this project is just about to get underway.  We consider that the new infrastructure will be hugely beneficial to cyclists in the area.  It will also help the City of Edinburgh Council in working towards its ambitious targets for increasing cycling in the Capital.”

The works will be undertaken between 0930 hrs and 1600 hrs Mondays to Fridays and the contractor, Lafarge Tarmac, will make every effort to minimise disruption. Pedestrian access will be maintained throughout the duration of the works.

The new cycle corridor route will run along the following streets:  North Meadow Walk (off-road shared footpath and cycle path), Hope Park Crescent, Buccleuch Street, Gifford Park, Clerk Street (A7), Rankeillor Street, St Leonard’s Street and Hermits Croft. The works will also affect these streets: Buccleuch Terrace, St Leonard's Lane and Montague Street. 

The Council's Active Travel Action Plan aims to see cycling account for 15% of all journeys to work and 10% of all trips in the city by 2020. 

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