Page last updated at 13:55 GMT, Friday, 11 December 2009

Hospital tram line plans may be revived

Tram
Line 1a is due to be running in 2012 from Leith to Edinburgh Airport

Plans for a tram line to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary could be revived if a new economic impact study of the area shows more transport links are needed.

Tram line 3, which would connect Princes Street with the hospital and the city's "BioQuarter" and was priced at £198m, was shelved in 2005.

The route does not have parliamentary approval that line 1b, which was axed earlier this year, already had.

However the line does have planning approval.

Tram line 3, which transport managers had planned to fund through the congestion charge, was dropped in 2005 following the "no" vote.

The city's first tram line, from Leith to Edinburgh Airport, is due to be running in 2012.

While the area already benefits from good transport links into the city centre, I am sure that improvements will be needed to cope with the growth
Brendan Dick
Edinburgh Business Assembly

Gordon Mackenzie, Edinburgh City Council's transport convener, said: "The south east of the city is a key area of future growth and it makes sense to see how we can maximise the area's potential.

"Providing good, fast, reliable public transport links is an integral part of this and we intend to work with partners on establishing the benefits that these links will bring to the area and ultimately the whole city."

Brendan Dick, outgoing chairman of the Edinburgh Business Assembly, said: "The BioQuarter represents a massive opportunity for Edinburgh, and Scotland beyond, to be recognised as a worldwide centre of excellence for scientific research.

"We have to play our part in ensuring the area has the necessary infrastructure in place to ensure that this happens.

"While the area already benefits from good transport links into the city centre, I am sure that improvements will be needed to cope with the growth and we need to think now both on a local and national level as to how we fund this going forward."



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