BY Amanda Connelly | December 1 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS     print icon print

St Mary's_Metropolitan_Cathedral_Edinburgh

Cathedral concerns over council’s proposed plans

A new set of plans proposed by Edinburgh City Council are coming under fire from the community at St Mary’s Cathedral, over fears it will have a ‘devastating’ effect for the cathedral and its parishioners

The council is holding consultations on new plans for Picardy Place, a ‘key junction’ joining up the East End of the capital with the rest of the city, with the council stating that since 2006, plans for the area have ‘been progressing to enhance the public realm; improve pedestrian and cycling provision; support the existing public transport network; and future-proof for any extension to the tram, and changes to the city as a whole.’

They have deemed Picardy Place to be performing ‘poorly,’ citing ‘bad connectivity between transport modes’ and with the majority of pedestrian space going unused with no dedicated cycle routes in place.

However, the cathedral parish (above right) has hit out at the proposals and the negative impact they would cause.

“You may be aware that the council has proposed a set of plans Picardy Place, which we think will have fairly devastating effect on the cathedral,” wrote the cathedral parish online. “We are to lose much of the space directly in front of the cathedral; the statues will be removed, the pedestrianised area and the parking/drop-off area will disappear altogether and be replaced by a ‘double bus stop.’

“This will have serious implications for disabled parishioners who rely on cars to get back and forward to the cathedral.”

They also noted that a place for wedding and funeral cortèges to stop outside of the cathedral has yet to be confirmed, while the roundabout will disappear and ‘who knows what might be built right outside our front door in its place.’

They encouraged people to voice their opinions on the new proposal before it is too late.

“Time is short and we must act now before proposals become plans,” they said. “I urge you to write to the council or to the politicians for the cathedral area to make your views heard.”

“The development of the St James Quarter provides the city with an opportunity to make a significant improvement to Picardy Place, returning the area to its historic layout, while developing public assets and improving pedestrian, cyclist and public transport access,” said the council website.

The council now wish to hear from members of the public on the current proposals for the street layout and island site at Picardy Place, in order to help them to ‘create a final design for Picardy Place that best meets the needs of everyone using this area.’


– To find out how to share your views visit: https://www.

– For more information on the proposals visit: https://www.


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