British Queen celebrates

Edinburgh is on track to be the inaugural Scottish city to prohibit pavement parking entirely, as per plans outlined by the city council. Motorists found mounting the curb may face a £100 fine

under the proposed regulations. The ban, which also covers double parking and parking at dropped kerbs, is scheduled to be enforced starting January 2024, following the implementation of national regulations on December 11.

Presently, pavement parking is only illegal in London across the UK, although police intervention is possible if a driver causes an obstruction. The Scottish government passed legislation in 2021, granting local authorities the authority to curb pavement parking. Ministerial approval in December will empower all councils to enforce the ban.

The City of Edinburgh Council identified pavement parking as a "persistent issue" on over 500 streets, and a survey indicated that 68% of residents support the proposed ban. The move aims to address challenges faced by disabled individuals and parents with pushchairs due to cars and vans obstructing pathways.

Niall Foley, lead external affairs manager at Guide Dogs Scotland, highlighted the potential dangers of pavement parking, especially for those with vision impairment or mobility issues. Stuart Hay, director of Living Streets Scotland, a charity promoting walking, commended Edinburgh's approach, emphasizing that footways are intended for people, not parking spaces.

Despite the significant problem, the council stated that no additional parking staff would be hired for enforcement, asserting that there are currently sufficient legal parking spaces in the city. The plan is scheduled for debate by councillors next week, with implementation expected in the new year.

Other local authorities, such as South Lanarkshire and Scottish Borders Council, are considering similar bans. South Lanarkshire expressed support for the ban, citing higher car ownership than available parking in some residential areas. If implemented, a "soft approach" would be adopted to consider the impact on drivers. Scottish Borders Council conducted a consultation to identify areas for a case-by-case implementation of the ban. Photo by Nicholas Mutton, Wikimedia commons.