“20 mph for the city centre is a crucial first step towards civilising the streets for pedestrians right across Edinburgh…”
Scottish charities have praised the roll out of 20mph across Edinburgh.
Stuart Hay, Living Streets Scotland director, said: “Edinburgh has taken an important step forward in introducing the widespread 20mph limit.
“People on foot are much safer when surrounded by traffic going at slower speeds, especially those who are young or at the older end of our community.
“I encourage councils in the rest of Scotland to take on this initiative and I hope this will encourage people to walk more often, firstly within Edinburgh but ultimately throughout Scotland.”
Sunday (31 July) saw the beginning of Edinburgh council’s 20mph roll out across the city.
Drivers in the city centre and rural areas in the west of the city will have to follow this limit from Sunday 31 July, as part of a drive to improve safety and boost active travel.
The 20mph limit will be phased into another six traffic zones over the next 18 months, making Edinburgh Scotland’s first 20mph city.
By January 2018, around 80 per cent of Edinburgh streets will have a limit of 20mph.
David Spaven, convener of Living Streets’ Edinburgh Group, said: “20 mph for the city centre is a crucial first step towards civilising the streets for pedestrians right across Edinburgh.”
Ian Findlay, chief officer, Paths for All, said: “There’s now irrefutable evidence that everyday walking is good for us, individually and as a nation.
“It’s good for our health, connects people and communities and is by far the most efficient way for people moving about for short journeys in city and town centres.
“To capitalise on these wide ranging benefits it’s essential that decision makers do what they can to create safe and welcoming walking environments.
“A city-wide 20mph zone is exactly the sort of measure that we would like to see local authorities adopt.
“Paths for All are delighted to see Edinburgh City Council rolling out 20mph zones and encouraging safer journeys for residents and visitors on foot and by bike.”
Other supportive organisations include Cycling Scotland and Guide Dogs Scotland.