Sheet_101___Buccleuch_Street__South_A major cycle route through Edinburgh is to be created under plans announced by the council and green travel charity Sustrans.


Under the proposals a mixture of dedicated cycleways and shared pedestrian and cycling paths will be laid between the Meadows and the Innocent Tunnel at Holyrood Park, joining up two existing cycle routes.


Edinburgh council cycling spokesman, Councillor Jim Orr said he hopes the plans will make cycling in the city safer and more attractive to families, and that the council will be able extend the route to link to the Union Canal.


Councillor Orr said: -“One of our primary priorities is to encourage people to switch to public transport and active travel. This is better in many ways such as reducing congestion, air pollution and wear and tear on the roads.


“Every journey on foot or by bike as opposed to car (or public transport) saves the city a little bit of money.”


The council’s Active Travel Action Plan set citywide targets for 10% of all journeys, and 15% of trips to work, to be on bike by 2020.


A spokesperson for Sustrans Scotland said:- “If these targets are to be realised, it is essential that high quality cycling facilities are put in place.


“People need to be able to cycle with ease from where they live to where they need to get to – be it the shops, school or the workplace. If there are any obstacles in the way, this will put many people off before they have even started.”


Sheila Gilmore, Labour MP for Edinburgh East, who is a cyclist herself, also backed the plans. She said:- “One of the lacks in Edinburgh’s cycling provision is the joining up of the off road cycle routes via safe routes, so this is very important.


“I am sure there can be some debate about the exact route chosen and that will emerge in the consultation.”


Feedback to the public consultation can be made on the council website until December 16. You will find the consultation here.