Spaces for People traffic restrictions in Elgin to change later this month
TRAFFIC restrictions within the centre of Elgin are to be changed after the October school holiday.
As part of the Spaces for People project, funded by the Scottish Government and backed by NHS Grampian’s public health experts, a series of traffic measures were introduced in towns across Moray to make it easier for residents and visitors to socially distance.
In Elgin, current measures remain in place until 25 October, after which:
- The temporary pedestrianisation of east High Street and south Lossie Wynd (11am – 4pm) will end.
- The temporary restrictions on west High Street and Batchen Street will end.
- The all-vehicle restriction on Commerce Street (between 11am – 4pm) will end, and it will revert back to being pedestrianised except for permit holders and those accessing disabled parking bays.
- Pavement widening on east High Street (between Muckle Cross and Commerce Street) will continue. This will require continued relocation of the taxi rank, and suspension of the disabled parking bays outside Farmfoods.
- Additional disabled parking bays in car parks will remain.
Business owners who are temporarily using land outside their premises for tables and chairs while the current restrictions are in place will be communicated with directly.
In the coming months, additional cycle storage will be installed in the centre of Elgin, to encourage active travel. Feature gates are also being installed at either end of the High Street, to allow easy pedestrianisation if needed in the future. A permanent feature, they could be used to close the area to traffic for events, or for any other relevant traffic restrictions.
Leader of Moray Council, and Chair of its Economic Growth, Housing and Environmental Sustainability Committee, Cllr Graham Leadbitter, has said these changes are the result of continuous monitoring, and feedback from business owners.
“Spaces for People has been in place primarily to protect public health and enable distancing for people queuing and passing each other.
“The changes were always planned for review in October and the road closures will now be lifted with the wider pavement areas retained, which we believe offers the best balance going forward.
“While we do need to be ready to take further action, should it become necessary, we will continue to balance up all the risks and work to keep our town centre as accessible and as safe as possible.”
NHS Grampian’s Deputy Director of Public Health, Chris Littlejohn said, has backed the Spaces for People measures in place across Moray, Aberdeenshire and Aberdeen City which allow for social distancing in town and city centres.
“The fact is this is not over, far from it. One of the big lessons we have taken from all of this is the surprising number of people who test positive for the infection even though they do not have symptoms. When we saw the councils looking to take advantage of the funding we were hugely supportive of it because we could see that helping people to have space and the further apart we can stay from one another, the less time we spend close to one another, the lower the risk of transmission.”