Bikes from across town cycled a stretch of Lanark Road, which recently saw a number of new measures put in place as part of the Spaces for People program.
Adults and children were seen walking up the hill towards the Gillespie junction, many ringing their bells in protest, before turning around and back down the cycle path.
The main thoroughfare has been one of the focal points of the Spaces for People debate that has been going on for a year.
The two-lane road was reduced to a single lane on each side as part of the program, with the speed limit reduced from 40 mph to 30 mph.
Cycle paths with bollards have also been put in place, as well as floating parking areas to allow cycle paths to be uninterrupted.
A consultation with Edinburgh City Council to make the SFP program permanent saw a wave of objections against the Lanark Road, but cyclists today hoped to show the flip side.
Organized by Better Edinburgh for Sustainable Travel (BEST), SW20, a member group of the organization said:
The 20 Minute South West (SW20) Neighborhoods are a group of people from local communities in South West Edinburgh who are passionate about creating sustainable change locally in accordance with the policies of national, regional and local governments concerning climate, planning and public space.
“There is a huge need for a modern transport network locally, able to meet the demands of multiple climate and health emergencies. This is why we call on Council to keep the Lanark Road spaces program for people, to learn, adapt and improve it, in partnership with the local community so that when permanent changes are made, they are the good ones.
“If the program is cut, there won’t be a quick way to build on the progress we’ve seen. An ETRO will help make and measure improvements – 26 organizations and companies agree.
Let’s improve, don’t delete what’s there.
Opposition groups were not in favor of Wednesday’s protest, but Professor Derryck Reid, chairman of South West Edinburgh in Motion (SWEM) and a local resident, agreed that a mutually agreeable solution had to be found.
He said: ‘Earlier this month, a preschooler attending a sports club was run over by a cyclist on the bike path and both were injured – as predicted by near misses reported before the ‘incident.
“The insistence on a design that places a cycle lane between the sidewalk and the parking lot is the root cause of this collision, and a direct result of the residents’ safety concerns that have been dismissed. The board must urgently review its risk assessment for the program in light of this incident, which took place just two weeks after the Play2Learn club resumed using Dovecot Park for its operations.
“The people who need to have a say in this decision are the local residents and their children and that is what has been lacking so far.
“We ask cyclists who are visiting for the first time today to remember that for us this street is our community of hundreds of family homes and several child-centered businesses – many of whom have been here for decades and have chosen the area specifically for its accessibility and proximity to green spaces.
“But it’s time to get out of what divides us. We probably have more in common than it first appears.
“We want the street we live on to be as safe as possible for all road users and following our own local investigation, there is a list of actions that we hope the council will consider. These would improve accessibility for people with disabilities and those with mobility or learning disabilities, promote safer walking for all pedestrians, especially on the school route, and ensure that the road is improved for cycling. The next step would be further community consultation on ideas, with a discussion of the best ways to help bus users as well.
“In our delegation to council tomorrow, we will call for appropriate community-led designs for our roads and paths using in-depth local knowledge, and stop forcibly installing infrastructure designed by people hundreds of miles away. because it is the only approach that can be sustainable for the future. “