Leader comment:New Town bins

As the council continues its desperate effort to clear the rubbish backlog caused by the big freeze, another bin battle is looming in the New Town.

Six years after the massive row which made headlines worldwide and even involved the United Nations, plans are once again on the table to place massive communal wheelie bins on some of the city's most salubrious streets.

There will, of course, be a stink, raised by the same people who argued in 2004 that the bins would be a blight on one of Scotland's most important civic landscapes.

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As they did first time around, such critics will have a point: the huge, dark receptacles are an ugly sight where they are located elsewhere in the city.

However, the problem for those who want to keep the New Town communal bin-free is that they also, by and large, keep street rubbish under control as much as is possible in a city.

Since the big bins were rejected no-one has come up with a good alternative for those parts of our World Heritage Site which were spared them.

Underground collection points, off-street corrals and seagull-proof canvas bags have all been suggested or tried. Local residents came up with their own solution to keep black plastic bags away from birds and urban foxes, but hanging them on railings for collection is not exactly pretty either.

The whole New Town bin row now looks set to re-ignite with the current consultation. It is time for a rethink, but clearly one thing the cash-strapped council cannot go on doing is make daily rubbish collections from select residential addresses, at a cost to all of us of 200,000 a year. Even the United Nations would think that unfair.


with wood panelled walls, an open-plan design and a balcony with forest views, the new building planned for Dreghorn Loan sounds grand indeed.

But the planning application we report today is not for a luxury home or an upmarket office, but for what would become the Capital's most swanky treehouse.

This will be no creaky gang hut banged together with some bits of four-by-two and six-inch nails. This will be a bespoke, architecturally designed alternative living area and playhouse.

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To which we can only say "Who would live in a treehouse like this...and can we swing by sometime?"