New body to coordinate Edinburgh transport

An Edinburgh tram on a test run. Picture: Neil Hanna
An Edinburgh tram on a test run. Picture: Neil Hanna
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A NEW body is to be formed to coordinate trams and buses in Edinburgh with a view to future integration with rail, cycling and walking.

Transport for Edinburgh will involve four directors of Lothian Buses - Ian Craig, Bill Campbell, Bill Devlin and Norman Strachan - which will also operate the trams, and councillors.

The city council will not say until next month when trams will start running, but transport convener Lesley Hinds said it would be a “very low profile” launch, which suggests it will not be until after Christmas.

Four elected councillors will be appointed to the body as non-executive directors.

Three non-executive directors with “suitable transport experience” will complete the board, which will be chaired by Cllr Hinds.

Transport for Edinburgh will eventually be responsible for introducing cycling and walking routes into the network, but will concentrate solely on trams and buses in the first 12 months.

There is also a possibility that the rail network could be integrated as well.

Cllr Hinds confirmed the body would run from Lothian Buses’ HQ or the City Chambers.

She said Transport for Edinburgh would be “new and fresh” and ultimately responsible for putting in place the council’s wider transport vision.

Cllr Hinds added that there would be no introductory free travel on the trams, but ticket prices would mirror bus travel costs.