At yesterday's City of Edinburgh Council meeting, Morningside Councillor Neil Ross persuaded the Council to improve pedestrian access across Edinburgh cost-effectively.
The motion highlights the positive impact that paint-only zebra crossings have had in allowing safer pedestrian access on side streets while being up to 40x cheaper to install than zebra crossings with flashing lights. It's time we were ambitious for Edinburgh's pedestrians.
The motion was amended by SNP, Labour and Green Councillors which unfortunately includes a delay in rolling out more zebra crossings.
Commenting afterwards, Councillor Ross said
"I am delighted that the Council will proceed with a trial of side road zebra markings but disappointed that the SNP/Labour led Council, supported by the Greens, decided to delay the process. Pedestrians are the top of the travel hierarchy and their road safety should be given greater priority by the Council."
The full text of Councillor Ross's amended motion is below:
Motion to Council on 25 November 2021
Call for action on zebra markings for side streets
83% of adults would feel more confident crossing the road with zebra markings
29% of adults have been hit or had a near miss at a side road
65% of adults think the UK government should authorise zebra markings on side roads
76% of parents of 4-11-year-olds would feel safer about their child walking to school (or allowing them to walk independently) if there were zebra crossings on side roads
76% would also be more likely to walk to school if there were zebra crossings at side roads.
highlight the benefits to pedestrians of zebra markings for side streets;
ask for authorisation, if necessary in conjunction with the UK Government, for the Council to implement zebra markings for side streets; and
report to the Transport & Environment Committee within two cycles to provide details of the correspondence with the Minister, including the response received from the Minister and details of any progress made.
Proposed by Councillor Neil Ross
Seconded by Councillor Kevin Lang
The motion was amended by replacing the original final paragraph with new paragraphs – see below.
Recognises that discussions have already taken place with officers on this topic as the Coalition acknowledged this wider campaign and the benefits that zebra crossings of this nature could bring to Edinburgh’s residents. Councillor Watt has, for example, already requested a pilot in her ward.
Requests that officers investigate the potential to set up a trial of zebra markings on side streets in Edinburgh, learning from the trials in Manchester and Aarhus. Suitable trial locations should be identified by taking into account other planned road changes and related aspects of the City Mobility Plan, with engagement with local Ward Councillors and Community Councils. This report should be prepared with the intent of returning to the Transport & Environment Committee within two cycles, in other words by March, setting out the possibilities for positive action on this topic.