Fri 24 Jan, 2020

It’s time we started building the sustainable neighbourhoods of the future instead of repeating the mistakes of the past Alison Johnstone

Around 2,500 objections have been lodged to a proposed £120m development of Sheriffhall roundabout on the Edinburgh City bypass, with a week still to go on the Transport Scotland consultation.

Lothians Scottish Green MSP Alison Johnstone, who launched the campaign last week, said the objections must be considered by the Scottish Government when planning all future road expansion projects.

This follows a report by the Scottish Government’s Infrastructure Commission this week which advised ministers there should be “a presumption in favour of future-proofing and maintaining our existing road network, rather than building new capacity”, because of the climate emergency. [1]

Responding, Alison Johnstone said: “I’m delighted but not surprised by the interest in my campaign. We’ve known since the 1960s that building more roads increases traffic, yet it’s a model the Scottish Government seems determined to repeat again and again. They told us the Queensferry Crossing would make more people use public transport, yet we’ve seen a million more car journeys over the Forth.

“Even the written proposal for Sheriffhall admits the development will increase congestion in and out of Edinburgh. It’s time we started building the sustainable neighbourhoods of the future instead of repeating the mistakes of the past, especially considering the urgency of the climate emergency.

“Instead of roundabouts and ringroads, the Scottish Government must listen to their own advisers and reduce the cost of public transport, increase its capacity and reach and make our journeys by cycling and walking as pleasant and safe as possible.”

There is still a week to object to the Sheriffhall development here. The consultation closes on 31 January.

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