May 2024

Road maintenance policies – Edinburgh Council

This page refers to road resurfacing or reconstruction, not to pothole filling.   Priorities for road resurfacing are decided once a year, based on an algorithm which depends on road condition, type of road and traffic usage; and capital funds are used.

Pothole filling uses a completely different process, including responding to user feedback, and comes from revenue money.  Pothole problems can be reported on the council website here – phone numbers are included for urgent cases.

For several years (at least 5!) Spokes argued hard for roads which are particularly important for cycling to be given a special cycle weighting in the algorithm which prioritises roads for resurfacing.  Eventually, in 2014, we succeeded – the story is here.  It is a good example of the importance of consistency, continuity and persistence in campaigning!  Edinburgh is, so far, the only council we have heard of with such a policy. Subsequent developments are below, most recent first, and show how a policy can be improved through experience and persistence. Conversely, we are in danger of going backwards on the policy to incorporate cycling/walking provisions in road resurfacing schemes.

2309 Incorporating Active Travel in road resurfacing – further Transport Cttee report seeking to bypass this policy [see also 2304 & 1601]. Spokes email to councillors. The Committee ‘notes’ this but a final decision for 24/25 will be taken in the budget (Feb 2024?). Meanwhile the ‘no AT’ policy has been happening already in recent years. e.g. Craigleith Crescent, Seaview Terrace/Eastfield.

2304 Prioritisation report for 23/24 – Appendix 2. Also, note that the report proposes downgrading the commitment to integrate active travel proposals – because an £11m increase in the maintenance budget means there is ‘generally’ only time and money for like-for-like replacements.

2208 Prioritisation report for 22/23 – Appendix 2

2207 Future (provisional) resurfacing schemes 22/25 (received after many requests) – Spokes comments

2106 Prioritisation report for 21/22 – Appendix 2

1901 First formal consultation meeting on road renewals, as decided by TEC (1806 below).   Spokes report.

1806 Transport Committee agrees improvements to cycle-weighting and consultation on resurfacing projects.  Committee Report 20.6.18.  Amendments by Cllr Booth, agreed 7-4 with SNP/Lab for & Conservatives/LibDem against – final motion item 9 here.

1803 Prioritisation report for 18/19 – see Appendix 5.  Note that roads down for ‘strengthening‘ or ‘resurfacing‘ are those where substantial improvements may be possible.   It is unlikely those marked ‘surface dressing‘ would get more than painted facilities.

1707 Spokes letter seeking further improvements in the cycle-weighting policy.

1701 Prioritisation report for 17/18 – see Appendix 5   Spokes comments  Council reply

1601 Revised ATAP [Action C15, page 40] commits to assess roads being resurfaced under the capital roads replacement programme to see what cycling (or walking) improvements can be incorporated, rather than just resurfacing with the same layout as before.  This was a policy change we had long argued for.

1601 Prioritisation report for 16/17 – see Appendix E

1410 Prioritisation report for 15/16 – see Appendix B.   First report to incorporate the cycle weighting.

1410 Council agrees to include a cycle weighting in road resurfacing prioritisation