2015_04_19 EDI City Views-22

Edinburgh’s bus lanes to go part-time

Castle brae’s Electric Car

Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service

Afternoon Tea at the Waldorf

Collective at the Filmhouse

At yesterday’s Transport and Environment Committee meeting the councillors agreed to allow all bus lanes in Edinburgh to be effective only at peak times of the day at least on an experimental basis.

Spokes and Living Streets had both asked to make deputations on the matter and in light of the legal advice that there should not be any deputation given on Traffic Regulation Orders

Councillor Nigel Bagshaw and Councillor Chas Booth both tried to contest this point saying that it was odd that people could not make oral representation when they can make written objections or comments.

They explained that deputations had been heard on experimental Traffic Regulation Orders before now in relation to George Street.

The Transport Convener Councillor Lesley Hinds stuck to her guns and said that in the formal part of the process there can be no deputation heard at this point. She said she did so reluctantly but it was in line with legal advice. Councillor Perry then asked for the legal advice to be circulated to members of the committee.

The committee heard that the council had undertaken a survey of bus lane usage. The evidence suggests that there will be no increase in traffic emissions as a result of the reduced hours during which bus lanes will operate.

Cllr Nigel Bagshaw asked about the impact on cyclists and was told by the council official presenting the report that all groups of road users had been looked at and they had listened to all of their concerns. Cllr Chas Booth questioned whether the few months during which the Experimental Traffic Order will be operational is a long enough time to monitor all concerns. The amendment will last for nine months. The Transport Convener mentioned some of the 31 streets which would be affected by the change and asked that all committee members take special note of all traffic on these streets in the months ahead.

She also said that some of the policies which the council has already put in place to prioritise pedestrians and cyclists have had a beneficial effect for example on Waverley Bridge.

The two Green  councillors were most vocal of all 15 members of the committee on this proposal and Alison Johnstone, Scottish Green MSP for Lothian, criticised the council for deciding to open up bus lanes to other vehicles except during peak hours.

Prominent routes affected include Leith Street, Leith Walk, Lanark Road and York Place. The MSP said that the council’s own report accepted that “there will be some loss of amenity for cyclists”.

Alison Johnstone MSP, Co-convener of the Scottish Parliament’s cross-party group on cycling, said:

“By changing all-day bus lanes into peak-period bus lanes the city is opening up more road space to private cars and HGVs when instead it should be attempting to reduce traffic flow in the first place. This move is likely to worsen the noise and pollution on our streets.

“It’s disappointing that the council has ignored the reasonable objections to this move, and has pushed through such a backward step. It will worsen conditions for cyclists at a time when we should be making it easier for people to get around our city by bike, and making our streets cleaner and quieter for people to enjoy their community.”

Commenting on the decision, Living Streets Scotland Director Stuart Hay said:

“It’s hard to see this decision being anything but detrimental to walking in the Scottish capital. Less provision for buses can only mean more and faster moving traffic in closer proximity to pedestrians. We are particularly concerned about the impacts at weekends, where the priority is to encourage people to enter and enjoy the city without driving.

“It’s very surprising that a council, which has done so many positive things to promote walking and cycling, has made a decision of this nature. We will be closely monitoring conditions for pedestrians during the trial period.”

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We reported to you yesterday morning that a group of 10 pupils from S4 at Edinburgh’s Castlebrae Community High School are building an electric race car from scratch which will then compete on the race track in East Fortune this September.

This innovative initiative, developed by Edinburgh College in partnership with Castlebrae High School and sponsored by Lamborghini Edinburgh, is aimed at engaging and inspiring the engineers of the future – giving them the chance to see some of the world’s most advanced supercars first hand while building their own electric car.

After initial sessions in the Edinburgh College workshops, an expert engineering instructor from Edinburgh College now visits the school every week to work with the pupils on constructing the kit car which was sponsored by Lamborghini. The project develops their engineering and building skills from the ground up.  Working from a paper plan and with all the component parts, they will create a high performance electric race car that they will race in the F24 Greenpower event in September.  During the race the young people will take turns to drive the car and act as pit crew.

So here are the photos to prove it!

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Two charities that support elderly residents in Edinburgh have had their work recognised by Her Majesty the Queen.

Capital-based Duddingston Kirk Lunch Club and LifeCare Edinburgh been honoured with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK.

Representatives from both groups will be invited to attend a garden party at Holyrood Palace with the Queen in late Spring. Both charities were recommended for awards by Edinburgh’s Lord Provost and Lord Lieutenant, Donald Wilson, who also takes on the role of the city’s volunteering champion.

Read more here

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The June SocieTEA event at Waldorf Astoria Edinburgh – The Caledonian is set to be a ‘sparkling’ afternoon.

Champagne house Laurent Perrier will share the history of the brand while inviting guests to sample three marques from the world famous portfolio.  This is alongside an insight into the world of diamonds and gemstones, from the science to their beauty, with opportunity to try some fabulous pieces from Hamilton & Inches.

Dale MacPhee, General Manager of the luxury hotel, said: ‘After two successful events, the Champagne & Diamonds SocieTEA event is a perfect fit.  Guests will have a truly sparkling afternoon while enjoying our exclusive Afternoon Tea in the gorgeous setting of our Pompadour Restaurant.  All reminiscent of a glamorous garden party!’

The Champagne and Diamonds event is on Thursday June 18th tickets are priced at £40 each and includes a donation to charity.  For further information or to book, please visit www.waldforfastoria.com/societea  call 0131-222 8945 or email afternoontea.reservations@waldorfastoria.com.

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As part of the Edinburgh International Film Festival Collective and LUX Scotland present a screening curated by artist Beatrice Gibson that brings together a selection of short films thinking through the use of notation as a methodology and Maya Deren’s concept of cinematography as a ‘controlled accident’. Beatrice’s own films Agatha, 2012 and The Tiger’s Mind, 2012, will be shown alongside Maya Deren’s enigmatic short At Land, 1944; Mary Helena Clark’s experimental detective filmThe Dragon is the Frame, 2014; and Laida Lertxundi’s Footnotes to a House of Love, 2007, a sonically seductive film set in Los Angeles. The screening is part of Rhyme or Reason: an intensive programme at Collective from 22 – 26 June, investigating the role of notation, improvisation and score across the visual arts and other disciplines.

The screening will be accompanied by a conversation with the artist and Isla Leaver-Yap, Project Director, LUX Scotland and Ben Cook, Director of LUX. They will discuss the selection of films and Beatrice’s upcoming work Crippled Symmetries, a co-commission between Collective, Grazer Kunstverein and FLAMIN (Film London Artist’s Moving Image Network), which uses American modernist William Gaddis’ epic satire JR as a score for its production. Crippled Symmetries will premiere in Scotland at Collective in August 2015, as part of the Edinburgh Art Festival.

Tickets are available from EIFF for £7/£5

A ticket to the screening is guaranteed when booking a ticket for the week-long intensive programme.

For more information on the intensive programme and Beatrice’s forthcoming exhibition at Collective visit Collective’s website.

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