Portobello Community Council

Portobello Town Centre Survey – Responses

Posted on: January 11th, 2017


The following is a summary of responses to questions posed as part of a consultation exercise on Portobello High Street conducted by Portobello Community Council in conjunction with City of Edinburgh Council Planning Department.


Planners wanted to hear views on the shops and services on offer and the street and public spaces.


The survey was conducted online and ran from 08 December 2016 to 10 January 2017.



Q1 – What is your view about the range of shops, services, facilities and food and drink establishments along the High Street?  How balanced is the current mix? Are there too many similar types of shops/services or gaps in what’s available?

Independent baker
There is a need for a greengrocer
A lot of charity shops and hairdressers. It would be good to try to mix these a little more with food shops.
too many barber shops. would be nice if there were more fresh food places and a few more independent craft/design/art shops. love the variety and number of cafes on the high street
Whilst the variety of shops is improving there appears to be over provision of charity shops, hair and beauty shops and takeaways. The charity shops have some of the best sites on the high street.
Too many charity shops ..but understand why!
There is a good range of shops and food establishments but I think there are enough hairdressers/beauty salons/charity shops as it is so I don’t think there should be any more. Although there are lots of pubs I feel like there are no pubs for a younger crowd. My boyfriend (25) and I (22) have just bought a flat in Portobello and we tend to have to travel to town or Leith for a more lively pub with some DJ’s playing (the likes of Bar Soba or Hannover 99 etc). What I would love to see is a new restaurant (not a cafe) and a new bar with a slightly later opening time (1am) that has DJ’s playing so we can spend more of our time and money in Portobello. I think Portobello is great but it is at risk of becoming a place very much for the ‘Yummy Mummy’ crowd and not attractive to younger people.
Lots of similar. But good independent shops.
has definitely improved in recent years but need more independant shops and less charity and hairdressers
Too many charity shops, of course but that is a countrywide problem. Need to support the butchers fishmongers and bakers. I note a few small corner shops closing around where the Sainbury’s local opened. please no more mini-supermarkets. Less takeaway food more restaurant provision would be good.
There is a nice mix of shops and bars on Portobello high street.
About time you took some interest,Currently we have a glut of hair dressers and nail bars. Why is ther no control over this. There are few community “high streets “in Edinburgh. We used to be one of them! You have allowed big businesses to come in so that the small very useful, retailers are forced to close(green grocers, butchers,general stores). Natural retirement is a factor but what enticements are being offered to nail bars that are not being offered to the more useful shops, I could have my hair done in a different local hair dresser for the next 18 weeks! Time you started to question the validity of these businesses as personally I have doubts that they are what they appear to be!
Mix is ok at the moment, woudl be nice to see high street extended a bit longer. Would like to see: Dry Cleaner. Greengrocer. Restaurant/eatery. Less turkish barbers. Better cards or gifts shop. pub/diner. shoe shop. better post office.
Too many charity shops, shops should not be allowed to hang merchandise outside. Looks untidy
There are too many Charity Shops. There is a lack of good quality fruit and vegetable shops. I am very disappointed that RBS is closing its Portobello branch. A good quality delicatessen would be a welcome addition to the High Street. I was very disappointed that the Mica hardware store was taken over by Sainsbury’s Local (which has nothing to offer Portobello High Street that isn’t there already). The hardware store that has recently opened is small, but it is a start. There is a great selection of cafes and bistros in Portobello.
The market conditions, demographics, spending power, foot plates on offer and rental levels determine the range and choice available. There are sections of the high st that are more successful than others – looking at why this is would be a good starting point.
The range of retail outlets is currently very limited. Other facilities such as Class 3 hot food are abundant but vary in quality/offer. There is strong potential to encourage a wider mix of offers to the local community.
There are a lot of hairdressers and charity shops on the high street – perhaps too many for the area. There are also quite a lot of newsagents – again maybe too many. We also have a lot of gift shops – which makes sense as Portobello can be a bit of a ‘destination’ in the summer. I think overall it is fairly balanced – and there is a dominance of locally owned businesses over chains which is great for the area. If anything I would like to see more support for local businesses. One thing that would be good to get back is a greengrocer – Banana Republic is (or has) closed recently.
It has been encouraging seeing the mix begin to change with the opening of dog treats, craft beers etc but there still seems to be a glut of basic cafes, hairdressers, beauty salons and charity shops. Worrying though that Maddie and Marks has not been sustainable.
Aldi is a huge improvement. But too many cheap takeaways in general, and not enough choice. Great to have the Fish shop and the newish hardware shop. A bonus to have Earthy even if it’s not that central.
Too many nail bars/beauty salons. Almost too many coffee/takeaway shops.with RBS closing the south side of that piece of town will be very empty
Keep big chains out. Build a mix of specialist retailers. Don’t group like shops together. ie charity shops.
Too many hairdressers and charity shops.
Too many charity shops and hairdressers…
Good balance. Mostly independent businesses: long may this be the case. Please don’t let in all the chains & make it like any other faceless high street.
we miss the grocers
There are a lot of charity shops, hair/nail salons and cafes. Nicer bars/restaurants would be a bonus. And even fewer grocery/corner shops would be better
Now that there is a hardware store again, and a key cutting/shoe repairer I think the balance is pretty good.
Maybe too many beauty salons, charity shops and snack bars. I’d like to see more diverse local retailers. A greengrocers, a shoe shop, that kind of thing.
Good mix. Better choice than most high streets.
Too many beauty establishments, charity shops and hairdressers. Not enough food and drink establishments
far too many charity shops and hairdressers. Why cant we have rent control like they have in Amsterdam for example, so that small indepedent businesses can thrive instead of being pushed out by people who run largely cash businesses or don’t pay rates. Also apparently the council and Scotmid cooperative own about 10 of the shop units which seems ironic!
Generally a good mix. For my tastes a a few too many beauty/hair units.
All good
There is a range of shops but quality is variable, many in need of investment in frontage and interiors and too many charity shops
Too many barbers/salons, too many charity shops
Too many hairdressersand beauty salons The old hardware shop is missed as the one at the east end of portobello does not hold the same extensive range of goods.
Far too many hair salons. Otherwise a good mix and can’t think of any other business type that would work here
There is an increase in the number of hairdressers/beauty salons. Better quality food outlets do not bother me so long as they do not create debris/litter around them. Carryout food shops should have a far bigger responsibility to make sure surrounding bins are not overflowing and in some cases should provide bins which they have the responsibility to empty when full
Too many charity shops
There is a ridiculous number of hair/nail beauty parlours on the High Street.
Current mix is good. rather a lot of charity shops but this is reflection of national economic state. Better than than empty premises.
Too many beauty parlours and hair-dressers. Don’t need any more charity shops. Please no more tattoo shops. Need more small retail shops and cafes. Specialised shops e.g. for cycles, IT and occasional clothing (e.g. wedding, kilts) seem to survive. Regret loss of RBS.
Good range of independent shops. Compared to the likes of Stockbridge it hasn’t had as many multinationals take over. Maybe fewer charity shops and hairdressers would be good.
A ladies dress shop might be an idea.
Too many betting and charity shops at the moment. The two grocers shops have gone – so no small business owners selling fresh local produce is a big miss. It would be great to have a green grocers shop.
Best thing about the high street is the range of good things independent shops and social places.
Too many hairdressers. Relatively thriving High Street
Turkish barbers should not use LED scrolling advertisements, makes the high street look like Benidorm.
Small independent cafes are ok but we need a national player Costa / Starbucks as well.
Quality of our charity shops is actually quite good, that’s fine.
Overall Portobello is on the up , Musselburgh opposite direction.
Too many charity shops. Needs a greengrocers. Otherwise great.
Too many beauty salons, haordresser and charity shops. We need independent new businesses – but a variety please that generates income!!
Range is adequate bur could be Improved to allow for more shoppers
There is a preponderance of charity shops and there are too few grocers, bakers, greengrocers, butchers and other specialised food outlets. There are no clothing or shoe shops. The cafes and restaurants are good, but the high street could easily accommodate more of them. More florists would be nice, and other shops such as bookstores, stationers, off licences, sportswear, pet supplies etc would be welcome. Facilities for tethering dogs outside shops would be extremely useful. Freshening up the frontages of buildings, making the environment more colourful and cheerful, and better lighting would improve the ambiance.
Too many charity shops and scruffy shops. The newer cafes are better, but there still some scruffy areas, eg the corner with the Old Victorian Tea Rooms.
Far too many hairdressers and beauty salons. Not enough restaurants. No decent bakery until 12 triangles.
Excellent range, unfortunately, some shops don’t sustain customers and close down Not long after.
How many hairdressers, barbers and beauty salons does one high street need?!?!?!
Sadly, fresh fruit and vegetable sales do not appear to be enough to make a living from in Portobello.
There are too many similar types i.e. Beauty Parlour/Hairdressers/Charity shops
Perhaps too many charity shops? Smaller independents provide the best retail experience, particularly when they can mean a saved car journey to Fort Kinnaird or town. Porty Hardware has saved me many a trip to B&Q!
Very diverse range of shops from tattoo to fireplaces and undertakers (2 of them!) – perhaps too many restaurants and not enough practical shops for the local community. (no hardware shops now)
Over there last year or so there has been an improvement in the range of shops. I do feel there are still too many charity shops. A decent coffee shop would be good. Not another greasy cafe!
There are too many beauty and hairdressing salons, charity shops and betting shops. There is a lack of good quality food stores and restaurants.
too few “real” shops, too many charity shops and hot food outlets, but improved by presence of more cafes; too cluttered by A-boards etc
Fair range of shops for a local high street
There are too many eateries on the high street, many of which don’t last in the long term because Portobello doesn’t have the footfall to sustain them. Other than the beach, most people pass through Portobello rather than choose it as a destination because there’s not much here to draw them in. There are also far too many charity shops and we lack many diverse types of high street shops, i.e. bookstores, shoe shops, craft shops, music & film shops, etc. All in all Portobello offers a very poor shopping experience.
Moderately balanced – a lot of charity shops, hairdressers and beauty related shops. Missing a bookshop and a toyshop (considering Porty’s large number of young families)
A good mix of small independent shops (very important) with some chain shops, services and charity shops and food drink. Need a greengrocer.
there is definitely scope for some more variation. I would like to see fewer ‘noisy’ pubs, maybe some more food and drink establishments that offer healthy choices and a good veg shop would be great
There are a lot of charity shops but mostly nicely presented. The mix is quite good in fact. Lovely having fishmonger and butcher still.
Too many charity shops, beauticians and hairdressers. Lack of book, arts and crafts shops. A launderette/ dry cleaners would be great. As would an eat in Italian restaurant
there’s obviously a lot of non retail for example hairdressers, cafes, beauty salons but this is the way the future is going. High Street retail is really struggling with online and out of town shopping so I think we are doing ok in Portobello
good variety
I like the range of shops we have, but there are some gaps – no book or toy shop, no clothing or shoe shops (with Maddie and Marks closing). There is also an over provision of some services, like Beauty Salons. Great that we have a hardware store again, but shame it is not large enough to stock all the homeware and decorating items that Woodwares used to. Love the addition of Monny’s too – I hope it survives! We have a lot of pubs, more than I think is needed, but it is nice to see a trend towards them becoming more like cafe’s or restaurant’s.
Too many charity shops, too many takeaways
There is a good mix. I like having a butcher and fishmonger.
Few too many hairdressers, beauty shops.
Too many charity shops and food outlets – good to see the demise of Subway. On the positive side, lots of independent retailers – from Finlays the butcher to the new Porty Hardware and shoe repair shop in Bath Street. These small-scale local ventures should be encouraged – it was a big disappointment to see Woodwares lost and Sainsbury’s move into their premises.
Too many beauty salons / hairdressers and charity shops.
There are too many fast food outlets and beauty treatment shops. Good quality coffee shops are always useful. The loss of the Banana Republic fruit/veg shop is a great loss.
A greengrocers would be very nice. As would more women’s clothing boutiques. There are lots of excellent small businesses on Portobello High St. It would be a shame if they were outcompeted by larger supermarket chains etc.
Too many of the same type of shop namely barbers, hairdressers and beauty
Too many hairdressers
Too many charity shops , makes the area look run down
At the moment there are too many shops of a similar type – e.g. hairdressers, coffee shops and charity shops. Ideally it would be good to have a better mix but it is extremely challenging for small businesses when supermarkets are taking most of the trade. Clothing and footwear for adults are missing and particularly so for the elderly who are possibly unable to go to Fort Kinaird, Ocean Terminal or into Princes Street. Plus shopping in Portobello is very difficult if you have a car.
Overall the balance seems okay. There are a lot of hair and beauty places, although they seem to be thriving and doing well.
There are too many hairdressers, charity shops and food outlets.
Quite a lot of charity shops and hair dressers. Would be good to have more of a mix.
Bit limited however Porty has a small catchment and so only suitable for certain outlets.
There are a high presence of hairdressers and charity shops. There is room for more restaurants and cafes. There could be more clothing and household retail.The high street could possibly do with targeting a bigger range of budgets. It seems either very low or very high, with little in the middle.
Missing fruit & veg shop. lots of hairdressers and charity shops
Eating options are a bit limited – it seems like the ‘posher’ cafes are down on the beachfront and the High St has a lot of Greggs/chippies. The greengrocers is great though.
There are too many charity shops and hairdressers/beautician. It is depressing, no one would come here for that stuff. They should be on side street or limited to non corner small units.
Too many barbers and hairdressers. More variety needed.
Not an enticing array of shops.
Not bad but miss having a greengrocer.
There are too many hairdressers, nail bars and poor quality cafes limiting the availability of shops. Too many charity shops too.
Terrible selection of shops, mainly charity shops, book makers or beauty salons. Not enough sufficient mix of shopping to attract visitors or locals
To many charity shops and hairdressers
I enjoy shopping in Portobello. I do not shop in the charity shops although I donate regularly, and buy my Christmas cards from them. I like the fishmonger and butcher, ScotMid, the wine shop (for its cheeses), the card shop, and I like the gift shop, Live Laugh Love, and the eateries beyond Marlborough Street. And the artgallery/shop beyond. I love the parks. I do not like the tattoo parlours (there are 2 now, aren’t there?). I would love a more central car park although I personally can walk and take the bus, which I usually do. I do not like the bottleneck between Brighton Place and Windsor Place, where I think all parking should be banned. I would like to see safe cycling along the High Street with many more bicycle parks/bars. This might ease congestion. I find the High Street feels very polluted at busy times, so if more of us were on bikes, that would be good.
I think the current balance works reasonably well. While some might want more specialist shops, the viability of these is largely market driven. I’d prefer less hairdressers, beauticians and charity shops; but i do not think this should be forced by planning use classes.
I would prefer to see more cafes/restaurants
Reasonable, although we could do with a fresh veg shop
Too many beauty salons / hairdressers. A book shop would be good and a fruit and veg store back again.
Too many charity shops not enough quality shops to attract outsiders or other businesses E.g. North Berwick has some excellent quality shops .Also the portobello side of the high street is very cheap looking. The Joppa end has def improved
Too many hairdressers, beauty salons and charity shops. The new eateries and bars have really increased the popularity of Portobello.
There is currently a good mix of independent shops, eateries and pubs on the High Street. The independent shops are particularly important. I would not like to see any more supermarkets or chains.
Good selection although a lot of hairdressers!
There are far too many hairdressers. Choice of places to eat has improved over the years. There are enough charity shops. Wouldn’t want to lose any of them but don’t think new ones would add to the area. Parking is a problem…when isn’t it?

Q2. What impact, if any, do you think the new Aldi store has had, or will have, on Portobello town centre?

Far far far too early to say! Certainly causing Scotmid to try to up its game.
It ‘will’ decimate the potential of Scotmid
To be fair, the only real problem will be for Scotmid who have been under performing for years.
I worry it will put smaller businesses on the high street at risk. We already have the relatively new Sainsburys as well as the long standing Co-Op, we really don’t need more chain stores in the area
It may reduce number of shoppers using Scotmid and Sainsbury’s…
It will be unhelful obviously to the local specilaist shops such as butcher and fishmonger which are a valued part of the community
I think it has been a great addition and I think it already has and will continue to bring more people to Portobello. These people come to shop in Aldi is it is good quality at a low price but they then nip into other shops and cafes while down here so it is positively impacting the community.
Extended the end of the high street. Possible put mire pressure on scotmid.
will increase traffic
Not sure. Sainsbury’s local has hadbigger effect at my end of the high street.
I think that Aldi is not competing directly with any shops on Portobello high street except maybe Sainsburys Local. It will have increased traffic at the already very congested junction of harry lauder road and seafield road, and increased traffic in portobello itself.
Small specialist shops close. Eg green grocers butchers
Little or no benefits. If anything it adds (or will add) to traffic congestion problems. It will inevitably draw people from the new houses (in construction) away from high street shops. The opportunity it provides is to maybe extend the high street ‘feel’ further up portobello towards Seafield. I would like to see existing frontage of the tower blocks (opposite fishing shop) reconsidered as part of this.
I think the new Aldi is a great addition to Portobello, offering lower prices and car parking space. It may encourage competition for Scotmid, which may be to the shoppers advantage. Local shops like butchers and bakers are still in demand as they offer quality and a sense of community that large chain stores cannot compete with.
Aldi will provide an anchor to the west end of the high street – and will hopefully benefit the shops along that end most – the end that gets forgotten about from the Pitts to the Wild Flower Shop. The Aldi store is v impressive – at last we have a proper supermarket. Its a shame like the school that it was held back for so many years by a few
A positive impact. The biggest issue with Portobello High Street is that local occupiers are not shopping there, for a number of reasons. Aldi will help promote the retention of consumer spend within Portobello.
I think its a great addition. It’s not right on the highstreet so hopefully won’t impact on the butcher or fishmonger. We have lots the greengrocer so it’s a great source of veggies. It’s open late so it’s good for people like me who work 9-5 Mon-Fri and can’t visit local shops most work days. There’s lots of parking at Aldi – it might be nice to see some sort of ‘park and walk’ promotion – encouraging people to do part at Aldi, do their food shop and leave there car for a bit so they can go to some of the other shops on the high street. I think it might increase footfall – but only for those West of the Town Hall. Maybe putting signs outside Aldi promoting the rest of the high street (including stuff closer to Joppa) would be beneficial?
Not much I wouldn’t think. It is a shop for basics and shouldn’t threaten any of the independent paper/convenience stores.
It will keep us doing most of our shopping in Portobello – probably stop us going to Sainsbury’s @ Cameron Toll. So nice to have a reasonably priced supermarket within walking distance.
Too soon to tell but I doubt if those shoppers will come on in to Portobello
More traffic. Take trade from co op.
Increased traffic. Other than that, there’s already a supermarket in Portobello. I would hope that it would take custom from the Co-op rather than other smaller shops.
Will impact on Scotmid more than smaller indys.
Cheaper food for some locals – good to have a bit more choice than Scotmid & Sainsburys (both overpriced). More traffic mostly, and potentially more rubbish unless recycling facilities are improved.
Good – I think it’s bringing people to Portobello
Smarten it up a bit hopefully.
It offers a greater range of well priced products than the current supermarket options, so I suspect it will move some business on foot to that end of town, also will bring in new business by car that would not have stopped here previously.
I suspect it will be bad. Firstly, people will shop there instead of the high street. But secondly, people will drive to it, meaning that the high street will have even more traffic, making it a less pleasant place to be.
Good impact – more choice of supermarkets, good parking facilities.
Negligible. People that, in the past travelled to Morrisons, Lidl, Asda etc have the option of travelling a shorter distance. I don’t think it will massively impact existing shopping patterns
it will kill off independent food shops, of which there are very few anyway because rents are SO EXPENSIVE on the high street unless you are a charity, or betting shop or hairdresser
Has the potential to negatively impact on earthy just off high street. But to my mind no impact yet
Bad for shop owners unless the council can provide parking for their customers.
Positive as it increases quality. May shift some shopping away but that is a challenge that should be met by other traders
has probably drastically reduced takings at the scotmid, but generally a good thing for portobello
May bring people from neighbouring areas to Portobello on the other hand may compete with existing butcher which again provides more extensive range and which I feel needs protected
Scotmid may suffer but it’s nae good anyway, might bring more customers to other shops. It’s has increased the traffic which is a problem that is only going to continue as more housing is built.
It will be strongly positive. The Co-Op has survived mostly through having a monopoly. Sainsbury Local has too limited a stock to be a genuine challenger but Aldi has good quality. price and range. The Co-Op has increased its range but the levels of service remain very poor. There is no ethos of service and the customer just has to lump it if they question anything about how it is run.
Will make scotmid pull up its socks
I worry that it may affect the fishmonger, butcher and deli. I’d like to see another independent grocer on the High Street but they may be scared off by the competition from Aldi. The downside is that we’ll probably end up with more hairdressers as I don’t think Aldi offer that service…?
New Aldi is welcome addition, being at extreme edge of centre and reclaiming a very unattractive site. However, this store, the Coop and Sainsbury’s local are probably all we need. I would not wish to see any more big-chain supermarkets to threaten our smaller shops.
Dos’n’t seem to have had much effect so far, Co-op as busy as ever.
Improved the offer, extended the High Street and will hopefully trigger the redevelopment of Kwik Fit. This question should be seen as part of the growing Porty population and the new housing it will serve at Baileyfield.
It is good for me for shopping,but don’t feel the planners considered the traffic flow through Portobello.
Conjestion. I’m not sure the High Street was built with the knowledge of traffic volume we see now. Portobello should maintain its community feel which isn’t present elsewhere. Widening roads shouldn’t happen – we need more frequent, electric buses instead to avoid pollution.
There is no doubt that Aldi will impact on the other food stores in the area. Hopefully the butcher and fish shop maintain their loyal customers.
Don’t know yet. It is too early to say. I haven’t been there yet. The car park is too big and the extra space granted to Aldi by the planning department shouldn’t have been allowed
Positive, looks better than an average Lidl/Aldi.
Will have a negative impact, especially on Scotmid, butchers, bakers and wine and beer shops.
It is brilliant and there was a need given there are only two small supermarket chains nearby. Affordable shops for families are a godsend. Traffic remains unaffected. Although the managemt/flow of traffic into Portobello from Seafield and King’s rd needs addressing. The traffic light sequence is all wrong.
I think it is encouraging to have a big store …..it may encourage folks to visit other shops.
It isn’t in the centre of Portobello but will probably be useful to residents, both existing and to come, at that end of the High Street. I doubt that it will take trade away from shops along the Joppa to Bridge Street section, especially if these shops provide a more specialised service.
Not much as a little way from the high street. Might improve look and feel towards that end.
I like it but there’s nothing to encourage folks shopping there into the rest of Porty. Probably likely to be more detrimental for Scotmid. But it’s certainly impacted sales at the mouse hole deli for example.
There is no doubt that it has taken away business from scotmid, it seems to attract people from out with Porty, but I am not sure that they use the opportunity to visit the town centre. I think they shop at Aldi, then leave.
I think the people who shop on the high street will continue doing so.
More vehicular traffic.
I don’t think it will have much impact on most of the shops and it might encourage others to shake up and shape up
This is less a matter of evidence than casual observation but it seems to me that it adds little to the community. It’s car-orientated, putting a further burden on over-stretched road infrastructure. I expect that the competition with independents will drive down the quality and diversity of available retail on Porty High Street. Who wants lots of empty small shops and a couple of dominant supermarkets?
Pressure on grocery shops on the highstreet
Not used it but it has contributed to even more traffic which is not good for an already gridlocked area
It may reduce foot fall in the smaller stores. Parking is an attractive feature as finding a space on the high streets is problematic so simply heading along to Aldi is a good option. However, the kind of stuff they sell doesn’t really compete it the current stores on the high street. So I don’t see it causing any issues.
it will be the death of the Co-Op unless they improve promptly; the anchor shops like the butcher, fishmonger and wine shop will probably survive,so will the corner shops
it will add to traffic congestion along high street
I don’t imagined that one large chain outlet on the extreme end of Portobello will have much impact overall. If anything it’s necessary for there large influx of people who will moved into the new developments in that area. Portobello is already crowded and more people will push the local infrastructure to its limits.
Stretches the tow centre towards the Aldi. People visit from further afield with cars. Could they be tempted down the High Street?
I don’t know. Concerned that will impact on independent shops and create traffic congestion. Does not ‘connect’ with rest of shopping area.
I hope it is a good thing, it has a good selection of affordable fruit and veg and Scottish chilled foods. It also makes it possible for lots of people to walk to do their shopping rather than drive
Inevitably it will have a negative impact.
Imagine it has impacted on the small food / drink shops, such as the wine shop and mouse hole delivery. Also butchers and fishmongers. Possibly lower footfall at scotmid. However, believe it will regenerate the west of Portobello
will be a huge benefit and will boost the Leith end of the High Street positively
not sure yet more choice
I think it will impact Scotmid and Sainsbury’s, but hopefully the reduced cost of buying essentials will allow people to spend more money locally, and it certainly is driving footfall to that end of the High Street, which has always been harder to keep shops going.
Clearly to many nail and charity shops
I hope that the shops in the centre don’t suffer. I won’t be shopping there.
Will probably have a big impact on scotmid and will take people down to that end of the high street
It was a lost opportunity. When so much is made of the need for more housing, especially affordable homes, why was permission given for such a big single-storey structure with surface car parking space? An underground car park and flats above the retail space would have made much more sense, leaving additional space for housing. And it’s a pretty disappointing shopping experience – I’ll stick with Scotmid, thanks
Better competition and prices in other local stores I hope.
It may impact on Scot Mid but I think it is better quality and may make Scot Mid improve its store. I hope it won’t affect Findlay’s the Butcher and the fish shop. It certainly improves the west end of Portobello. It might encourage more people in to the area. It’s a bit early to say.
It will definitely bring more people to Portobello to shop but will also compete with some of the smaller shops for business.
Personally I shopped in Aldi before so welcome one a bit nearer. I think it is far enough out of the main drag so congestion is not a problem. I try to use small local shops but they are too expensive.
It will impact small food businesses without a doubt , if they are to survive they must offer something different
While most people welcome cheaper food prices, it is not an easy store to reach on foot necessitating the use (in most cases) of a car which has added to the traffic congestion in Portobello High Street.
A positive impact, hopefully bringing people to Porty to shop and eat.
It is bound to have an effect on local businesses that trade in similar goods although for the public it is great to have this facility despite the fact that it is a short drive to their store in Musselburgh!!
I love the new aldi shop. I think scotmid will struggle, but its been overpriced and lacking variety of stock for a long time and isn’t a nice place to shop. Other shops selling groceries may be impacted, but specialist shops probably not so much
None. May impact on Scotmid but not on others.
I think that it is very positive and encourages more people to travel to that end of the street. That end of of the high street is lacking the same quality as the rest. It seems to have the highest vacancies.It also helps encourage scotmid to keep up with the competition.
Nice to have a shop with affordable food. Like Aldi – good stock, cheap
I think it will lead to increased traffic down the High St and will probably affect trade at the Scotmid.
Very positive. Less traffic to Asda on Sir Harry Lauder.
Difficult to tell yet. More footfall at west end of High St may benefit local shops there. Many people getting off buses from town opposite Aldi now trying to cross there. I suggest you move the pedestrian lights further east.
Limited but see local people walking to the store.
I think the only impact it will have is increase traffic
I think it will be detrimental to the High Street shops, although it is a roomy car park. Once you’ve bought your basics it’s not a long walk from Aldi to Findlay’s, the fishmonger’s or the wine shop etc . Only time will tell. I worry about the effect at busy times on the junction at King’s Road.
The new Aldi seems to be drawing custom from shoppers who wouldn’t normally use Porty High St (as in taken custom away from Morrisons). In time it might lead to more custom on the High St, if sufficient raising of awareness is done.
I’ve not noticed much difference, apart from Scotmid being quieter.
Increase traffic, and potential loss of custom to some other independent traders pn the high street
very little. it’s not that good. i think it will affect Scotmid, but not the butcher or fishmonger. I think a lot of people are travelling to it from other areas.
I like the Aldi store. The frontage has made it look like a proper high st.
Don’t think it will have much impact. Personally I don’t like Aldi and wont use it.
I think the impact will be minimal. Its location and nature of supermarket mean that most shoppers who go there would have previously gone to Asda, the Co-op and Sainsbury’s. It shouldn’t really take trade away from the High Street as the independent shops offer something different and are more accessible.
Traffic problemsImpact on “corner shops” at that end of the high street
Think it will be a positive one. I’d more or less stopped going into Porty but go more now.
not much, nicely placed


Q3. How easily can pedestrians and cyclists move around or along the high street? (e.g. opportunities to cross the road, pavement and road widths, space to cycle safely)

Too many huge bins sprawled across pavements. Too many shop boards and wavy things on pavement. Not easy for elderly, infirm and especially visually impaired people. What’s wrong with just your shop sign?
There is litmited space to cycle safely at certain points on the High Street
Dreadful. Less traffic would be better for sure
very easy, plenty of places to cross, streets are wide enough for all
the side of the high street at RBS, Portobello bar is very narrow. There is too much street furniture in some places and the bus shelter takes up a lot of pavement space outside st andrews fish & Chip shop.
I think there are enough crossings in the road and the pavements are wide enough but a designated cycle lane from Kings Road to Mussleburgh would be hugely beneficial. This would reduce congestion along the prom too as at present a lot of cyclists don’t feel safe cycling along the main road and opt to cycle down the prom.
Poor dropped kerbs.
High st suffers congestion due to too many trucks delivering during daylight hours
Not easy to cycle! Walking generally ok. So many cars at peak times but not sure what the solution would be?
Crossing the road is difficult unless you walk to a pedestrian crossing, the high street and Brighton Place are already too busy.
Pedestrians Ok .bad congestion on road
it is ok. Bath street could be more generous pavements especially outside public toilets.
Never mind the high street. The rate at which they cycle along the promenade is a disgrace
I think Portobello is good for pedestrian access. Now that Aldi is open, a pedestrian crossing opposite the store would ensure safe crossing at that point.
A scheme to improve pavements is not the answer but is always the council’s starting point.
As a pedestrian, in the main the high street is fine to navigate. The new junction at Aldi feels a little risky – potential of traffic from 3 directions but no island or zebra crossing for pedestrians. I’d like an island added, much like Morrisons have further along Portobello Road. Crossing Seafield Junction can also be a pain but not much that can be done about that. The other place that can feel a bit tricky to cross is High Street between Bath Street and Windsor Place, and also outside the Sainsbury’s further along the High Street. An island here could be useful. One of the issues I find it trying to cross when there are lots of parked cars but the lights are not near to be useful. Restricting parking in some places could make it feel a little safer – but overall I think the pavements are wide enough for footfall and with a few additions mentioned above, access would be much easier.
It is not bad in the main. Bottleneck on the strip where Maddie & Marks is can sometimes be a little scary on a bike.
It’s fine.
Do cyclists still use the road? Do they not all use the Prom? There are at least 4 pedestrian crossings which change quite quickly to allow crossing. The new bus shelters take up a fair amount of pavement causing a little congestion on a busy day.
Mostly ok but more off-street parking required!
Pedestrian crossing timings have deteriorated greatly in the last couple of years, with longer between crossing times and reduced time for crossing. This is a safety issue, as a lot of people don’t bother waiting for the crossings now, as they take so long to change. There are no cycle lanes, so – understandably – many cyclist use the pavement, which isn’t ideal. Some sections of pavement are too narrow. In particular, the corner on Windsor Place and outside the Just World Shop (where the advertising hoarding/bus stop takes up too much of the available space).
Relatively easy for pedestrians – cant comment re cyclists.
A few bottlenecks with road crossing islands but they help people cross. Need school bus system. Have you seen the difference in traffic when schools are off? The pro is a good cycle/pedrestrian bypass if you’re not needing the high street directly.
Worried about the pavement at Kwik-Fit – easy for kids to run in front of cars exiting there, on there way too/from Aldi.
Traffic can be very busy. But plenty of places to cross.
Walking around is fine – pretty decent pavements with plenty pedestrian crossings. Cycling could be better, cobbles on Brighton Place make it almost unridable, and there are no cycle paths, so you’re just at the mercy of drivers.
For pedestrians, it isn’t too bad, although crossing the high street can be scary. Cars often jump amber or red lights, and they go too fast. On a bike, it’s very unpleasant, if not dangerous. And there is very little way to stop and park your bike while you nip into a shop.
The junction onto Inchview Terrace is an absolute nightmare to navigate. Not pedestrian-friendly at all. Cars jumping red lights. Very dangerous. This junction needs to be rethought with a pedestrian flyover/underpass or someone is going to get seriously injured.
Fine, no issues regarding pedestrian access
mostly ok. cyclists go on the pavements. there should be another crossing along from Marlborough street to the doctors surgery/skylark
Pavement narrow in front of skylark. Lights at crossing opposite twelve triangles very slow.
No problem
This is poor generally. Parking is difficult. There are shops near the town hall that have potential to use the space outside. On opposite side too little space. Same for the area around greggs and eastward towards Windsor place. Shops around Sainsbury’s have more space but again are compromised by traffic restrictions
not enough space to cycle safely – with increased traffic at busy times it is treacherous and with soon to be added residential areas, this will only worsen.
As a pedestrian I find the crossings satisfactory
Very, no need for any more pedestrian crossings
The pedestrian crossing at Windsor Place/Regent Street sometimes leaves pedestrians standing for several minute, it is unsatisfactory. Some curbs are still too high at junctions. Since I have got a small dog I have noticed how dreadfully dirty and debris strewn the pavements are, particularly opposite the Town Hall between Bath Street and the Police Station but it is only marginally less bad elsewhere. Shopkeeper should be responsible for clearing the debris their shops create on the pavement surrounding their shops,
It’s very difficult to cross safely unless making use of a pedestrian crossing. The roads are so narrow that parked cars often make it difficult for traffic flow. There’s not enough space for cyclists, but they can use the prom. The shops on the side going towards Musselburgh always seem to get more footfall, while the ones one the other side seem to suffer-perhaps due to it being difficult to safely and easily cross.
On street parking is an issue beyond Bath Street crossroads (ie towards Joppa). Crossings are adequate and generally well regulated because they do actually react when pedestrians press the button to cross. I don’t care to cycle on the High Street as I do not feel safe and would always detour via the Prom.
Road crossings good, especially at centre cross-roads. Centre High Street is not suitable for cyclists, suggest they dismount. North pavement width is good, south side is too narrow for comfortable and safe walking.
V poor cycling and walking environment. Vehicle dominated and the junction at Kings Rd is still a barrier to those outside the area.
There are too many traffic lights in Portobello.there is not enough room for the through traffic,cycling must be a nightmare
The pavement opposite the town hall was reduced in width several years ago so it’s more restricted than it should be, for everyone. It’s also had an effect on the buildings as it wasn’t done well (the road improvements), the flats in our block on the high street shake when buses come by. I’d say widen the pavement again and don’t remove the trees on the opposite side. the town hall side of the road has sufficient width and is also attractive to residents.
Provided barriers created to easy movement by pavement sales people such as, ‘talk talk’ are not there, then movement is comfortable. There are plenty of crossing areas.
Too many parked cars in the High Street for cyclists really. There is very little off road parking in PortobelloThere are sufficient crossing places in the shopping area
Think balance is right, no issues and we have two primary school children.
Portobello does not need a woder main road, but traffic managed more effectively. E.g light sequences etc. The Prom os a safe place to cycle to and from the city.
This is a difficult questions, cyclists can use theprom …pedestrians need more space
The road is too narrow for cycle lanes – some sections (Bath Street to Marlborough Street especially) are too narrow for buses to pass safely on occasion), but if there were no parallel parking permitted on the narrowest sections it might provide a little more safety for cyclists. This would, necessarily, require more parking spaces to be provided elsewhere, but already parking is at a premium, and surrounding residential streets are full of parked cars. A complete traffic management review should be undertaken by specialists in the field, to determine solutions to this problem. Crossing the road is not difficult, the pedestrian crossings are adequate. The pavements are wide enough for comfortable pedestrian movement.
Lots of pinch points for cyclists eg on high street near Windsor Place.
Very difficult junction at corner with Brighton place. Very busy. Brighton place sets in urgent need of replacement with tarmac. No cycle lane on the high street.
As a pedestrian, very easily.
Far too car dominated. No space to cycle safely, very intimidating with heavy stop/go traffic.
Road is too wide. At narrower points (e.g. opposite Marlborough Street) the pavement is tiny while the road is >4 cars wide.
This aspect of portobello is ok but cycle lanes could be added.
Not easily. Too much traffic, long waits for short sequence green man crossings. Inconsiderately parked vehicles make cycling more hazardous when mixed with frustrated drivers.
Most of the High Street has very good crossings and pavement width although some of the outside furniture is beginning to encroach
Not easily. The road design is beyond terrible. The High Street is forbidding for pedestrians and crossing it is very difficult. Given the extent of congestion, it’s clear that the High Street no longer even works for cars. It’s a dreadful road for cycling, and given the long history of tensions on the prom, it’s important that cycling is made easier on the high street. Right now, it’s a textbook example of how not to do planning. I had hoped that the re-surfacing debate re: Brighton Place, might mean we have a better solution at the Bath St traffic lights, like a mixed use mini-roundabout with constant flow but pedestrian priority.
bottleneck at the top of bath street causes problems for the highstreet moving towards joppa..hard to cross the road at the best of times
Easily. The existing pedestrian crossing located opposite Favours is ridiculous. Its only a few feet from the 4 way intersection. This contributes to terrible gridlock as the traffic lights are not in sink when someone presses the button to cross. i.e. your stopped at the pedestrian crossing but the lights at the 4 way intersection have gone to green. Its not needed. Surely people can walk the extra few feet and cross at the 4 way stop! Those few extra steps would possibly help our obese nation!
It’s a narrow street, it’s always going to be problematic for pedestrians and cyclists. A cycle lane will help, but traffic will bottleneck more.
pavement width is ok, as well as crossing points; space to cycle safely though???
High street is fairly wide and there are enough crossing places. even though this will become a 20mph area people will still speed along it or it will move traffic on currently quieter back streets
A huge undertaking went ahead years ago to widen one side of the pavements along the high street. This has done little to increase overall footfall and only succeeded in making Portobello high street a bottleneck zone for traffic. Since cyclists have been given licence to use the prom I have seen many speed along, just missing pedestrians who should still have priority there. This all reflects on the overall poor thought given to how people move in and around Portobello.
pedestrian provision generally not bad – some pinch points. Cycling less good. Lack of safe space on a busy street.
Pavement boards outside shops get in way of visibly impaired.
pavements seem mostly fine although I wonder about access for disabled users, with so many cars parked on the high street sometimes I think it can be a little unsafe for cyclists
That’s the biggest problem. Poor for cyclists in particular. Crossing options for pedestrians not too bad but some sections of pavement are narrow. Other sections are good.
The scaffolding at williamfield Square has been up for months. It is a hazard. Pedestrian crossings near town hall often has motorists across it when it’s green man due to high volume of traffic.
it’s not too bad for pedestrians but difficult for cyclists, the ideal solution would be to move the bikes onto the prom but unfortunately a lot of the cyclists who do use the prom travel too fast and can’t be trusted to give way to pedestrians as the instructions state, these people are a real danger to others.
It is very hard to feel safe cycling on the High Street, as there is a lot of buses and turn offs that make it feel like there could be a car cutting in front of you at any time. Pedestrians do get to have a very large pavement, especially on the side with the Town Hall, there is also very regular crossings, although on many of them it can take a very long time to get a Green man. I would also say that now the Aldi is there, the crossing next to it could use an upgrade. It can take a long time to get the Green man, and it doesn’t even last long enough to get halfway across the road, and you don’t get a beep. This is likely to be more of an issue when all the houses are there on the Baileyfield site. The pavement is also very narrow between number 23 and Data services because of the bollards and the fencing. There is also a very narrow pavement that runs in front of The Skylark.
Sufficient cross spaces. Need cycle lanes
As a pedestrian I am terrible and rarely use the crossings. But they are there. As a cyclist the parked cars on the High street, either side of the Bath/Brighton st crossroads feel dangerous.
High street can be very busy for cycling. Crossing okay for pedestrians
I findit ok as a cyclist, given that it’s a main car through route, though wheelie bins can clog things up when the traffic line is moving slowly. I’m looking forward to losing the setts on Brighton Place. There should be more opportunities for pedestrians to cross. The broad pavement area in front of the Town Hall could be better used.
Not bad. Worse crossing road since last sequence change at main junction linked to 2 nearby crossings.
The High Street has enough crossings for pedestrians over its full length and the width of the pavements is fine except in some sections on the south side near Windsor Place. I would not dream of cycling along the high Street but would go along the prom and walk my bike up one of the side streets. There are not enough places on the north side of the High Street to park a bike securely if you are going shopping.
There are sufficient crossings for pedestrians. For Cyclists the High Street is less of an issue than Brighton Place, which is a main route out of Portobello and is very difficult on a bike because of the road surface. An alternative route along Rosefield Avenue would be facilitated by having a dropped curb to allow cyclists access from the High St. to Rosefield Avenue.
Cycle lanes would be appreciated
The timings of the lights have been changed in some parts of the high street making crossing the road more difficult at times
Cyclists have more problems due to the narrow road in certain sections. There appears to be adequate road crossings for pedestrians.
With cars parked on either side of the road, the road is very narrow. I’m not a regular cyclist, however I know I definitely wouldn’t want to cycle the high street as it’s very narrow and cars go fast. A 20 mph limit along the length of the High Street would be brilliant. I think that parking / loading should be restricted more than it currently is, perhaps to one side of the road only. The pavement along the section where The Skylark is, is extremely narrow and I wouldn’t walk down it with my children / buggy. It would be great if the pavement could be widened here. The pavement on the other side of the road is a great width and enjoyable to walk down.
The space is adequate for pedestrians, except when cyclists start using the pavements! On that note – the street section between Bath Street travelling east to Bellfield St is probably the narrowest and possibly presents a problem for cyclists. I would not like to see the 15 min ‘Loading’ single yellow line parking taken away from this section as the parking in Portobello is getting very restricted.
Not great as very traffic heavy
Pedestrian movement is fine. Cycling is a non starter as roads are too busy and pavements too narrow.
Generally good.2 key points. Getting of the bus from Edinburgh to go to Aldi has no suitable crossing point.The pedestrian lights at Windsor place are not responsive enough, and people often cross long before they change.
Tricky for cyclists as sections of the High St are narrow and congested. Cyclists on the prom are a real danger and hazard to pedestrians
As a pedestrian, the High St usually seems busy with traffic at lunchtimes (when I tend to be there). I think there are enough opportunities to cross the road but there is often a long wait at pedestrian crossings.As a cyclist, I find the High St can be intimidating at busy times. When there is standing/walking pace traffic there’s not much room to filter, and when traffic is moving freely many drivers pull ‘must get in front’ manoeuvres only to have to wait at the traffic lights at the crossroads. In the morning rush heading towards Joppa after the traffic lights at the crossroads drivers can be impatient to get past when there isn’t enough space to do so safely.
Perfectly safe for pedestrians and cyclists it’s the cars that struggle with the delivery Lorrys parked
Traffic is dense. No designated cycle lane, so not safe for cyclists. High street is OK for pedestrians. Provision for wheel chairs users would need to be checked. Ok for buggies but not so safe at intersections where there are no zebra crossings.
Not great with parked cars.
there is far too much street furniture on the stretch between Bath St and Beach Lane.
The number of buses and parked cars especially outside the Baptist church severely restricts the flow of traffic. Double yellow lines are required to easy overal flow and improve safe crossing for pedestrians.
It is shocking for cycling but very good for pedestrians
fairly well
The High Street is a nightmare for me on my bike. I avoid it. Keeping to the left from King’s Road, means buses up behind you and then there are few lanes for guidance when the road widens at the Police Station. Obviously, it’s a nightmare beyond Bath Street, where it’s too narrow for bikes, or you risk the wrath of the motorist by holding them up behind you all the way along toward Joppa. I detour along the Prom but that’s not ideal as it’s much longer. Also, when I cycle down to Portobello I am never sure where I can park my bike and don’t want to leave it a long way from the shops/salon I am visiting.
The High St is currently far too dominated by cars, especially the narrower section between Brighton and Windsor Pl . It is an awful place to cycle. The footpaths are fine, but would benefit from a reduction in street clutter. Is there a possibility to investigate restricting through traffic to public transport only?
Pavements are quite narrow. No cycling facilities at all. The cobbles on Brighton Place make it difficult for cyclists to get into Portobello.
Cycling difficult, especially at peak times, as the road is often clogged with traffic. More cycle racks would make it easier to do local shopping by bike. It’s also often difficult to cross the road on foot due to the volume of traffic. Traffic noise and pollution makes the high street an unpleasant area to spend any time in.
Cycling is always a drama! Pedestrians I think can move around fine.
Not easy . Very cramped
I feel the high street is too busy at the moment with cars. The proposals at Baileyfield really worries me in terms of increased motor vehicles and putting cyclists and pedestrians in more danger.
It is fairly easy for pedestrians to move around, however it can be difficult for cyclists, especially at peak times, as queues of stationary vehicles make it hard to progress along the High Street safely and easily.
The south side of the pavement at the Joppa end of town is very narrow.
Crossing the road is not great. The nature of the high street, means that I want to cross the road frequently and it’s quite dangerous because of all the parked cars, and because it’s a busy road. But think it would be impossible to further restrict parking.
cyclists have a bad time of it

Q4. What opportunities are there for the public to use existing sites or spaces to sit outdoors or shelter from the weather?

I think we are pretty well served. Maybe flower beds alongside the benches at Pokemon Square?
These are limited
Quite poor.
more could be done to make the high street more picturesque, particularly along the Northern end as you get closer to Seafield. Would be nice if there were more plants
Daisy park and the seating outside Bank of Scotland are useful but offer no shelter from the rain.
I think there is a good range of outdoor spaces (the beach, the parks etc) to spend time outdoors but not sure if there are many places to shelter from the weather other than cafes and pubs which you have to buy something to be in.
A couple of seats but local shops and eateries give better oppertuntiy
not many
? Would like to hear suggestions
Would say that the area around the bank is well utilised with people sitting outdoors. Not sure about where you would go to shelter though.
Very little. Need shelter in
Outside the bank is the obvious place to linger, more could be made of the area with the stand of ginko trees. This area (outside the bank and up to the 26 bus stop outside what used to be subway) (and please not too many more beauty parlours) could be improved as it is a little outdated now. Actively discourage pop up phone/internet sales in this space please.
Very few
There is outside the Police Station, outside the Cancer Research shop, at the top of Bellfield Street, & the Daisy Park. More communal gathering places in Portobello would be good, especially considering the aging population generally.
Bank of Scotland and outside Favers are the only real opportunities
Opportunities are limited but no less than comparable locations within Edinburgh and elsewhere in Scotland.
Limited really – but I don’t think that is a bad thing. Cramond/Granton has outdoor shelters on the beach front but they are full of graffiti and rubbish. Same with similar structures on Aberdeen beach. I would be concerned about similar in Portobello and to be honest I think they spoil the look and feel of the beach we have. I think encouraging businesses to open in some of the empty units near the beach – including the old George Cinema – could provide more much needed indoor community space.
Not a lot really.
Only the bus stops, and the benches in front of the town hall in fine weather.
Plenty of seats outside the Bank and the shops and on the North side of the street, I have never seen all the seats occupied at once. Only the bus shelters offer shelter from the weather.
Reasonable number already being used but all depends on weather!!
Nothing available! A seated bandstand near the Town Hall would be brilliant!
This could be much better – there is a great space outside the RBS which could be better landscaped to make it more friendly
There are a few parks and obviously the promenade is a nice space
Not sure how to answer this question – there are benches at the town hall, but no shelter.
The bus shelters are awful, and provide no shelter. Other benches are mostly next to heavy traffic, so they’re noisy and polluted.
Lack of outdoor sites for public use. Potential to develop area in front of Bank of Scotland and Favers etc to make it more attractive and appealing
well if you like sitting in a cold wind :)
Poor shelter from weatherSeating is provided and good
Very few
There are spaces but shelter is an issue. The market in Brighton place is a positive initiative but suffers due to shelter issues. Some cafes could benefit from outdoor areas however space on the opposite side to town hall is compromised
Not much shelter from the weather down the high street and also not many places to sit
None come to mind
Okay but perhaps some more sheltered areas are needed
Not a lot of shelter
Free sites? Apart from bus shelters, zero. I don’t understand the question fully. There are outdoor terraces offered by a couple of cafes/restaurants but with the noise and road pollution, it’s not a very attractive option. Indoors, it can depend on the day and time as different establishments have varying opening times. A couple of days a week the only option is pub, when if you’re on your own you might prefer a cafe/bistro atmosphere.
Not too bad.
A number of shops on north side have tables and chairs, those outside St Andrews restaurant interfere with movement of wheel-chairs and prams, fault of new bus shelter which was placed too far into the pavement. Good number of seats on both sides of the centre High Street.
The Promenade is still disappointing but getting better
The town hall area is the only place to sit. There is no place to shelter at present.
The new bus shelters aren’t great – there’s hardly any protection from the elements as they are smaller than the previous shelters and have gaps. Portobello is a busier place than 10 years ago so shelters shouldn’t get smaller as the queues are longer. I’d say make sure the shops have covered space outside too, it’s a lovely town and you should be able to enjoy it sat out even when it’s raining.
There are plenty of seats on the high street but little sheltered areas. However, I don’t think shelter is a big issue.
At least 3 small parks and the prom and area by central traffic lights to sit but no shelters that. I can think of
Don’t know, I wouldn’t do either.
More seating outside on warm days would be lovely. The library is great for sheltering and looks after many children well after school who would otherwise be wandering around and feeling cold or bored.
We could use more shelters on the prom or the pier rebuilt to attract tourism. We could use more cafes and businesses beyond the amusements and a new lier or other attracrions such as pop up businesses or stalls.
Could be better
On the High Street there is nowhere to shelter from the weather other than bus shelters or shops, and not enough space to install such shelters. There are a few benches in the town hall area, which is really the only section wide enough to accommodate them. Perhaps a few more could be squeezed in, but this might produce problems for pedestrians to move around safely.
Not much on High a Street, more on Prom.
None. Very little outside any of the cafes etc…
Good areas for sitting outside, less so for sheltering from poor weather.
This is ok
There are a few benches in the high street but the fumes from vehicles make them highly unattractive to sit on.
There are quite a few benches for sitting out (‘tho’ some have been removed recently) but no suitable shelter from the weather and the new Bus Shelters are less than useless
Not many. Are there any?
I can’t think of many places to sit outside other than back gardens and court yards in the street. But there’s a beach 5 mins away, I would not be concerned with this. I’d much rather direct people there.
there are a few benches, and there could be more, but there is no real shelter from the weather
very limited
There are parks for the former and bus shelters fort the latter. Other than that Portobello doesn’t have much in the way of outdoor amenities.
Moderate provision. New bus shelter design is poor – no real sideways protection. Designed by a company with no experience of Edinburgh winds?
Not many. Need more of an identify for area outside bank as centre and sitting area.
bus shelters seem to be sufficient but there doesn’t appear to be many places to sit in good weather
Limited. More could be done to create a more pedestrian friendly feel. Lacks a pedestrianised centre where people can meet and chat without blocking the pavement.
Portobello is blessed with the promenade and great parks. However, can’t think of anywhere to take shelter during bad weather. Lots of benches along the high street too.
very poor especially on bad weather days, the decision to close the toilets at Joppa is a disgrace.
good but could be better
There is a lot of benches outside the Bank and near the town hall, with some on both sides. There is little or no seating along the rest of the High Street though. There are bus stops to shelter from the weather, or in the door way of the Town Hall, but otherwise it is quite exposed.
Very little
On the library side there is space and seats, but the police station side has limited space, and one seat. Bus shelters only option in inclement weather. Nice pavement cafe atmosphere in the summer now. I feel that this is mostly centred on the stretch from Dog and Cat home to Greggs.
Not many places for shelter (other than cafes, shops etc) Prom rather than high street for sitting outside
Not really an issue for me
Very few – could be improved.
There are bus shelters to get out of the rain but that is about all. There are benches to sit on by the police station. The ones on the corner of the High Street and Brighton Place face the wrong way to my mind. They face Brighton Place not the High Street. Some at the end near Favers coffee shop might be good.
I think there is very little sheltered seating.
For pedestrians I think it is fine, cycling is dangerous.
Bus shelters
There are benches on Portobello High Street for sitting but the congested traffic and resulting air pollution are not exactly conducive to a nice experience. In terms of shelter from bad weather, there are no shelters apart from those at the bus stops.
There is nowhere to shelter from the weather at all. Too few seats on the High Street also.
There is an ideal opportunity to erect such a structure in front of the Bank of Scotland.
Apart from outside the Bank there is nothing.
I don’t see much room for improvement here. Possibly better tree cover where there are benches and open spaces.The town hall 26 bus stop into town in the morning does not hold nearly enough people. Some form of alternative shelter would be useful.
Quite a few benches on high st and park areas
The big open space outside the RBS bank seems like a bit of a waste of space – with some trees and planting it might be a nice place to eat a lunchtime sandwich.
Too much exhaust pollution and dog poo. There is a promenade for sitting
This would be a positive change. Only one bar to note who utilises outside space in Summer.
It would be better to have wider pavements on north side of High St rather than south to catch sun
Limited but there are some benches at the top of bath street which are popular. Outdoor cafe seating should be encouraged. There are seats outside bank of Scotland but the frequency of dog poo makes this a less favourable place to sit.
I think there are sufficient seating but no reason to sit or stay in the high street, it’s ugly for what should be a nice seaside town. Horrible shop fronts and unappealing shopping contributes to this
very few as bus shelters are a joke
The wee Harry Lauder Garden would be a nice asset for folk if it can be used safely. I think it’s nice to sit for a while but the air is quite polluted, I’d say, if you’re sitting near the Brighton Place traffic lights. With the beach so popular, shelter from the weather might be good but there are a few cafes. One nearer the standard of the Beach House would be good located on the High Street, in place of the grottier shops.
The prom, obviously. Some benches outside Bank of Scotland. Would say, limited places to escape the weather, other than shops, cafes.
Little in the way of benches on the High Street, ad nothing which offers shelter from the weather. I wouldn’t choose to sit on the High Street as it currently is, due to pollution and noise. We need to find ways to actively encourage sustainable transport to be used around Porty in preference to cars
The bus stops all face into the road, which is madness on rainy days. There aren’t really other spaces apart from cafes etc.
Not sure
The library is a good amenity for shelter but if hours are cut then Portobello will loose a valuable public area.
There is currently nowhere on the High Street that offers opportunities for sitting outdoors or sheltering.
None that I can see. Most bus shelters have been removed
Not noticed sitting outside spaces….go in the shops if the weather is bad.
some, enough for a shopping street

Q5. How, if at all, does parking affects the feel and flow of the place and how people use it?

Yes, a bit.
No comment
Parking is fine
parking is a nightmare but I wouldn’t want more spaces to be available on the high street as it would spoil the look and feel of the area
Parking is difficult in the streets from the hight street to the beach and can deter people from visiting some of the shops.
Its sufficiently restricted
I think parking is a big issue in Portobello and one of it’s biggest downfalls. It can be very stressful trying to find a parking space and this could put people off coming to visit, especially in the summer months. I would love to see a multi storey car park being built in Portobello (although I’m not sure where).
Minimal disabled parking especially at the west of high street
parking on high st should be banned
Parking is important, most sucessful area is outside the Townhall I think because there is sample parking for short stay and shop
Parking has the effect of slowing traffic which is good, but adds to congestion.
Parking necessary to help viability of struggling small retail outlets. However ,irresponsible parking on corners blocks view of cars attempting to enter from side streets.eg Pittville st
it is ok.
Difficult to park but parking is essential for trade
Parking is an issue in Portobello. Residents have difficulty parking. Shoppers can park for a limited time but there are rarely spaces available. Shopping in Portobello is definitely better done on foot.
Parking is a problem. There should be increased time available to those who park and shop.
Significantly. Consumer habits have changed and the ability to drive to the chosen shopping destination is crucial for a thriving commercial centre. Any retail/commercial location will suffer greatly if accessibility by car is compromised. Portobello suffers greatly from this.
Parking is awful in Portobello – and as a result driving on the side streets of the high street – particularly near the beach – is an absolute nightmare. Perhaps making some of the streets access only would help – or enforcing a one way system. Making sure road markings are clear (including things like turning spaces near the pool which are often parked on) would help. I think traffic wardens need to be out particularly on nice days where people abandon their cars in ways that can obstruct the roads. I don’t want to see permit only parking as that is unfair to make people pay to park outside there homes. Other methods should be used to make life easier. Turning right on to the high street from side streets is also very tricky. Public transport links could also be improved to minimise impact of cars – why are there no bus from Portobello to Ocean Terminal/The Shore? Why no bus to Fort Kinnaird? Improving links to other local areas may cut down on residents needing to use their cars.
Parking is always going to be an issue given the burgeoning population. School run in heavy rain is almost impossible to do by car now. Having parking along the main road doesn’t really detract from the appeal of the shops.
Too much fast traffic on Brighton Place but that will hopefully be fixed by the 20mph change coming to Porty. Pedestrian cross walk works well. The pedestrian crossing at Sainbury’s does not work well – makes us wait far too long to cross. Please fix this.
There is well used parking on the South side of the street which is acceptable. People park outside the Bank usually in a haphazard fashion and can cause obstruction to the flow of traffic. Further east there is on street parking which can cause traffic congestion and pollution but which seems important for casual shoppers.
Affects badly as lack of off-street parking results in those from further away such as Duddingston and Eastfield not using high Street as much as could.
Parking is scarce – but that’s not a bad thing most times of the day.
Good to have free parking for businesses & accessibility. Not a major issue. Was hard to find a space as a resident but would rather free parking than permits. I’m sure you’d like to make a killing on paid parking for sunny day beach goers but it’s good to keep access free. Some roads could do with being one way: like Marlborough Street.
There is no parking in porty – but people should just ditch their cars
If there was no parking on the high street there would more free flow and a better feel
I think parking is the biggest problem for making the town and the high street work better as it expands with new residents and new shops. On street parking limits the flow at rush hour and traffic grinds to a halt. There are no large car parks in useful spots for day visitors so side streets get full up and residents end up on a cycle looking for a spot.
Parking can make it difficult to cross the road on foot. A lot of drivers also park on the pavement, making it less usable.
Parking is fine.
Parking amenity poor, however, no real options to expand. Lack of parking could potentially put people off visiting and shopping in the area. Public transport options are good and should probably be advertised and leveraged better
parking is difficult to find. Streets like bath street are very busy.
At peak times Street extremely busy with cars and parking provision is very poor. Changes feel of the street for the worse
Ridiculous place for car users and I totally avoid it using malls, shopping centres etc as there is no parking! I stopped for a haircut the other day and the owner said I had 4 minutes on the yellow line so I left and he lost a customer. If you want customers for shops you need to provide parking!!! Not rocket science… we know cars are loathed along with their drivers but we are customers too that would like to support out local businesses but if you don’t let us park we will take our business elsewhere. Provide a good sized place to park preferably underground (taking up no space) and you will save the high street.
Greatly is the short answer. You struggle to know where to begin to park in Porty that it’s hardly worth the effort. Especially when you have Musselburgh a few miles down the road with decent parking and better shops and shopping experience
The parking situation is not so great, sections of the road are a bit tight when full up. people frequently park illegally in areas that make it difficult for traffic or cyclists to pass
Some areas it is too easy for people to flout restrictions and park/stop on double yellow lines near junctions and zigzags next to crossing. In both these cases they are posing a real increased risk to pedestrians, especially the most vulnerable, e.g. children, the elderly and people with limited mobility.
Doesn’t flow effectively due to crossings
Totally. Especially between Regent Street and Bath Street, it’s really congested at that part. It’s not inviting for pedestrians or cyclists-nor drivers I’d imagine. The best part of the High Street for a pedestrian is where the Mouse Hole Deli and Favers Candy is. The pavement is really wide and you can stand comfortably and look in the window without somebody bumping into you or having to move to make way for buggies etc.
As a High Street resident (towards the City end) I have never had a problem finding a parking space there but it may not be so good towards Joppa.
Parking impedes traffic flow, difficult for buses, don’t think it affects pedestrians. Suggest limit parking to one side of the street.
Parking = cars. A tough choice has to be made on the High St and side streets to remove parking. Is Porty ready to embrace genuine and meaningful change or tinker with the status quo?
Parking is dreadful, causes traffic jams every day.Peak times and weekends are getting worse.
It’s too conjested. The Scotmid car park barely gets used as not many car drivers go there. Why not make it public parking?
The town hall parking is well used and mostly people are courteous. As I live on the high street it’s essential that there is a brief opportunity to be able to slow my elderly and infirm parents or drop off heavy items at my front door. This can only happen with the existence of the loading bay.
The Georgian streets are too narrow due to parked cars. Regent Street, Malborough Street and Bath Street should have a one way system. High Street and Brighton Place too busy with traffic
You can park at the Gymnastics centre and walk 2 mins back the way or park easily around St Philips and walk along. If your struggling to park in Portobello it’s because you expect to park on the high street which I wouldn’t.
Parking isn’t great but I can’t think of where a car park could be added which would be off the High Street.
Bridge St car park is ideal. Permits for some resodential streets would help limit car use.
Definitely discourages people from visiting the high street.
See my comments above on the subject of parking, or rather lack of it.
Too much parking as it leads to the High Street feeling narrow, causes congestion, difficult for cyclists and pedestrians.
Detrimental parking restrictions on some parts of the high street which undoubtedly put people off stopping. Area past the beaten docket for example. Got a 30 fine the other day for parking for 30min. No off road parking at all that’s convenient and scotmid have posted restrictions as well as making rear cat park ‘staff only’ with security on patrol to stop any parking. Only option is using the surgery car park. We need options to park on the street with less restrictions and some decent off road parking.
I can’t see that it affects this at all.
Parking creates traffic. Traffic makes the area feel hostile and unwelcoming.
It is gettkng busier with cars especially with the continued building of new properties.
It increases risk for other road users by reducing sightlines. Parking is often on the pavement which then gets damaged and becomes a trip hazard.
Parking is a bit chaotic at times but usually works out quite well. Unfortunately it has a negative effect on the side streets which are a hazard to pedestrians/people with impaired sight/prams and wheelchair users
Parking is a problem. More accurately, cars are a problem. Speaking as a car owner, we need to bite the bullet of car use and trying to incentivise non-car journeys and that does mean creating disincentives for car use, especially for short journeys. Cars are a hazard but they also dominate the landscape of Portobello. The whole feel of the place is bent to accommodate cars. We need to re-think this.
parking space for people to pop into the shops are fine – but flow/availability of parking spaces is reduced as more people park and eat in restaurants
There isn’t much of a flow really as it’s usually gridlocked. The amount of traffic along the high street is horrendous. And if future housing developments in the surround areas get approval then its going to be a disaster for the area and the high street. When are the Council going to realise that Portobello, Brunstane and the surrounding areas just can’t take anymore traffic. I’ve stopped using the high street as I live in Brunstane and its a nightmare to pop into a local shop as the street is always gridlocked. So many of the shops have lost my business recently. Getting parked to even visit the doctor is a nightmare.
It’s very difficult to park. This affects my decisions on where to shop based on where I can get a space. But I do often walk to the high street.
the High St is not that pleasant to sit out in because of the high level of pollution
people often park on the double yellow lines, high street and streets around are already at capacity for parking
Portobello is a very crowded community which means that parking is already difficult but with an incoming influx of more residents due to new housing developments it’s only going to get worse. In the summer months, when people flock to Portobello for the beach, the influx of visitors make parking a nightmare for residents with many parking spaces taken up by visitors or people parking in haphazard ways which inconvenience locals.
As a Porty resident who walks to shops, cars obstruct the flow and damage the feel of the place.
Parking always a problem for flow- on other hand keeps traffic slow – and their needs to be parking
I’m not sure I can see a situation to reduce parking at the moment.
Parking very limited and lots of parking on yellow lines. Feels very busy and traffic congested always.
Parking is terrible in Portobello. Difficult on both sides of the high street. Narrow streets such as Marlborough and Regent Street difficult to navigate with a buggy or by wheelchair users. Blind and partially sighted also, as cars park up on the pavement.
I think we manage ok on the high street with the balance between being able to stop and use our shops and not hold traffic up too much. the real problem is the streets leading to the promenade on sunny days where the council appears to think that making it as difficult as possible to park is helping anyone! what we need is dedicated free parking to allow visitors to come to portobello and spend their money in our shops and cafes.
not sure (dont drive)
I think the parking outside the Town Hall does make that area the very centre of the High Street. The lack of easy parking around the top of Malborough Street and the tiny pavement there makes that area feel less pleasant.
Too many car parked around the high st
Parking causes congestion at the Bath St/High St junction. Residential streets off High St have parking issues
High street and streets around always feel fairly congested
We need to create more parking opportunities off the main street, and encourage people to walk bigger distances from their car. Might it be possible to encourage public use of private care parking spaces – eg, next to the George (ex-bingo hall) and the surgery – when they are not open?Cars on Regent St and Marlborough St are out of hand, using the pavement constantly, but it’s hard to work out alternatives, particularly near tenements, when each household has at least one car. Controlled parking as in the city centre, with enforcement against parking on the pavement?
Parking could be improved to reduce obstructive and and antisocial parking on residential streets nearby.
Well if people can’t park many will stop coming!That’s the dilemma. If drivers abided by the regulations it would be better. I don’t think the parking has much of an impact it’s the traffic in general. Delivery lorries to the likes of Sainsbury’s and others should be done very late at night or very early in the morning, not at six or seven at night or nine and ten in the morning. The Portobello High Street should be sign posted as unsuitable for heavy vehicles. That is what the Portobelo by-pass was built for. Too many lorries are using this route that should be on the by-pass.
I don’t have a car but if I did I would find it very difficult to find parking on my street. On some side streets the pavement is so narrow that it is difficult for two pedestrians to pass each other.
Too many cars parked on the high street resulting in gridlock at times and pollution through fumes
Too many parked cars on the high street
Parking getting more and more difficult , of the council are to allow new people to live in portobello , more parking needs to be made available .
Parking is a real problem in Portobello High Street as is the amount of traffic. This has a negative impact on businesses and people ‘wanting’ to go to Portobello. Plus it must be very difficult for residents in the side streets to park their own cars outside or near to their own front door. Parking on both sides of the side roads make it difficult to drive up and down as the resulting space allows only for one car to get through – not always easy to manoeuvre
I think that parking should be further restricted on the High Street.
Parking is necessary in Portobello to allow the public who use cars as transport, access the shops etc. If restrictions on parking are introduced, this could sound the death knell for some businesses.
Not enough parking makes it difficult to stop off to use local amenities.
Parking on the High Street is good when I’ve paid attention. It seems to be close to the shops and not get held up with long parking. One place that does have an issue is outside the Sainsburys. The delivery trucks often park on the road during rush hour, blocking buses from the kerb, which will stop disabled users from boarding or getting off. Vehicles parked outside the section in front of the Skylark can cause problems in the morning.
Parking is limited but lots of people walk or live within walking distance
Parked cars take up road space which could be allocated to cyclists. It feels like drivers sometimes are looping round looking for parking. Manoeuvring in and out of parking spaces can be a risk to cyclists.
There is long standing parking lack in porty which is only going to get worse why not get rid of the vandals play park behind new apt block which is anyway full of syringes and make a pay per use car park and put meters on High street
Now extremely difficult and frustrating to park on or near High street. Including to go Medical Practice. A big free car park would help everyone including businesses.
There is parking away from the main road but this isn’t utilised enough. It would help widen roads.
Restricts traffic flow in bit between Bath St and Regent St. Delays buses
Parking outside the Baptist church is a hazard and causes traffic tail back s especially with buses passing in either direction. Double yellow lines please
Don’t think it affects it at all – bigger issues to worry about
Nothing to do with parking
What parking?
In general the small number of parking bays are reasonable, and do not negatively affect the feel. However the loading bays on the north side opposite the Town Hall are constantly abused and impact on the use of the space by pedestrians. The former fruit and veg shop there now operates as a wholesalers – it’s not uncommon to find the loading bay occupied by their transit vans for most of the day, continuously.
Everything feels very tight – since most of the residents will have cars, any visitors are vying for space and therefore prevent residents being able to park near their properties.
Far too much parking on the High Street and all side streets. The high street is noisy and dirty because of the traffic levels, which puts me off spending much time there.
Parking is a nightmare and has got worse over the 25 years I’ve lived here. There have been spaces taken away for wheelie bins and way too many disabled spaces which lie empty all the time. Also the High St is just a bottleneck for traffic. I’ve considered moving because of the lack of parking as I need a vehicle for work.
I would never bring my car into Porty. Too busy
Not much parking but I don’t take my car into Portobello as the traffic is heavy.
Parking makes the road a bit tight and congested in places, with cyclists in particular adversely affected.
There has been a huge volume of houses built without adequate parking – this means the high street always has traffic problems
As always parking is a problem. The high street is so long that parking in a car park behind Foresters, and walking practically to Joppa seems a bit of a waste of time for little things. I live in Northfield so I consider Portobello my nearest town but am using it less and less as my kids have got older because there’s nothing much there to make it worth driving round and round trying to park in the heavily congested streets…it’s easier to go to the Fort.
tis ok

Q6. Do you have any suggestions on how the town centre could be improved for people on foot or bike?

Less street furniture please.
By making it traffic free the people who use it on foot or bike will be made safer
Bike lane isn’t really required as most cyclists use the prom. Current level of crossings is goood, placements are wide enough
more plantlife, more ‘hub’ areas with seating etc
Digital speed display on Joppa road to deter car users from speeding. Bylaw preventing parking on pavements.
A designated cycle lane all the way through.
Ensure endustrial bins are kept in close to pavement ensuring adequate space for cyclists. Some bike racks would work well.
ban parking on the High St during daylight hours
Surface could be improved. Trees planted. HBOS building demolished and replaced with something beautiful. Beyond the health centre the High Street disintegrates as there are no shops of the South side of the street, some way to improve this would be good. Shame that new housing opposite St Andrews has no public function at ground floor level – this should have been mandated by planning!
Reduce motor vehicle traffic.
Pavement repairs! Find alternative track for bikes -not prom which is a shared facility. Bikes should all have warning system(? Bell)
Maybe mor bike parking or a few more ‘small scale’ bike stands against the shop fronts somehow (the bike shop in North Berwick has a good example of this).
Cyclists have no regard for pedestrians on the promenade and go too fast. I see no need for bikes to be allowed on the promenade. The name lends itself to walking.
I think pedestrians are well catered for. Adequate bike rakes might help cyclists.
No, but improving access to car-borne shoppers is vital to sustainability.
I think the flow on the pavements for pedestrians is fine. Maybe sprucing up the high street a little – more plants/trees etc would be nice. Info boards on the high street could be updated too. In the summer beach visitors congregate at Bath Street and near the Arcades. Better signage on the beach and high streets could show them there are other things to see and do in Portobello and give the shop owners nearer the Joppa end a bigger portion of the footfall. I’m not a cyclist but I suspect the high street can be tricky to navigate sometimes, with the combination of on street parking, high volume of traffic (inc buses) and a narrow street once past Bath St.
More secure bike parking would be helpful. Lamp posts often busy with a dog.
Bikes on pavements continues to be a problem for walkers. The bikers seem to think they have right of way over us and there is very little courtesy, especially on Brighton Place. We’ve been sworn at…
Any further widening to the pavements would create too much traffic congestion. With the prospect of further houses being built around the area we need to welcome pedestrians into the area to sustain the local shops. Perhaps improving the Prom would help
Keeping empty shops looking attractive by local traders having permission to display goods and services.
Make crossing timings more pedestrian-friendlyWiden pavementsCycle lanes
Secure, dry bike parking would be excellent.
Could we have a bike lane?
No parking on the road
Reopen the train station up near Stanley Street for easy access from neighbouring parts of Edinburgh, reduce on street traffic, including buses – more space for bike lanes, less pollution.
Segregated bike lanes are the only solution for cycling. This would have the added benefit of removing some cyclists from the Prom, where conflict. For pedestrians, moving bins off the pavements, stopping people parking on pavements, reducing traffic and slowing down traffic would all help.
Pedestrian overpass at Inchview Terrace junction is a must.
Better thought is required as to what businesses are allowed to open in the area. We need more restaurant and licensed establishments in order to make Portobello a destination as well as somewhere where people stay once they’ve been to the beach. We have reached peak beauty salon/hairdresser.
bike lanes on high street. More outdoor seating outside cafes allowed to give it a continental feel, instead of the rigid rule of 4 tables max or whatever it is
Cycle Lane. Cyclists use road not pavement. Smoother/more level pavements. Narrow areas of pavement widened
Let drivers park easily and they won’t trawl the street looking for a free space. One can pass two or three times looking for a space which is actually doubling or tripling traffic congestion. If we dump the car we reduce emissions and the congestion.
Improve traffic flow and congestion. There are plenty of cyclists using the prom but few would leave to go shopping in Porty.
some more provision for pedestrians and cyclists would be welcome, perhaps removing some of the parking areas around busier parts of the street and replacing these with cycle lanes or more paved areas
Improve the public toilets
Some greater priority in places. I am not sure where the plan to resurface Brighton Place has got to (it was supposed to start early 2016) but to relay the sets woul be totally illogical if you want to create a more cyle friendly environment. All the current situation does it encourage adults to cycle on the pavement and cause a nuisance/hazard for pedestrians
Off road cycle paths
Not allowing parking on the section between Regent Street and Bath Street, except for deliveries, would aid cyclists. Apart from that, closing the area to traffic like the High Street in the city centre would be the only other help. It would also help air pollution levels.
The main problem for pedestrians is still dog mess. Edinburgh dog owners seem way behind the rest of the UK when it comes to cleaning up after their animals. For cyclists, see above. The High Street is too busy but we do have the prom.
Widen south pavement. Don’t see how the centre can be made cyclist-comfortable. Even if parking was restricted, High Street is too narrow for a cycle track. Cyclists can use the Promenade.
Reducing car volumes and prevalence is a priority if walking and cycling is to improve. This would mean dedicated cycle lanes and removing some of the High Street on-street parking.!
Double yellow lines through out the centre of the town,alternating from one side of the street to the other.
Widen the pavements opposite the town hall again. Let’s encourage walking and small business owners like green grocers to make use of wider pavements.
There are two main issues I feel really need to be addressed. One is larger drop bins for school pupils to get rid of lunch time packaging in the area across from the townhall. The pupils try to dispose of their rubbish into a bin but invariably, the bin is over full and rubbish ends on the ground. The second issue is the organised group of beggars that sit on the pavements. Especially annoying if they place themselves at busy bus stops to capture the public flow. This blocks space for people with prams, bikes and in general.
Cycle racks in High Street would be useful. Not sure how cycling could be improved
Dog muck between High Street and Towerbank school is shocking and I feel really sorry for the parents who send their kids along. It can only be a couple of owners who need identified, some signage on the dangers would create a community challenge to the issue.
More places to lock bikes.
Use the promenade
One way traffic..less parking…more family facilities.
See my comments above on the subject of pedestrian and traffic circulation.
Take away parking and put in cycle lanes and wider pavements.
Cycle lanes!!!!
Look into mini holland style schemes.Provide segregated space for cycling, work with council to link into existing routes – added benefit of moving cycle traffic away from prom.Take steps to remove through traffic (Sir Harry Lauder Road->Milton Road is a ready made bypass).

Narrow the road, removing some parking when required.

Better road surfaces for bikes.
Yes, block off Brighton Place at the railway bridge to all but PSVs and emergency vehicles. Do the same at the west end of Argyle Crescent to prevent rat-running. Widen all narrow pavements to allow prams/wheelchairs to pass each other easily.
I think clever road design, of the sort that Edinburgh doesn’t generally do, has much potential; the sort that mixes space for cars and pedestrians in which the latter have clear priority. It won’t help traffic but a smoother, slower flow might not be any worse for cars than traffic lights. How about a remodelled road layout for Marlborough St and Regent Street so that pedestrians can actually walk safely on the pavement without being impeded by cars or bins? Expensive, I know. But the present situation is terrible.
although I accept bike traffic is important, there is not enough space for buses/cars and bikes to move along the highstreet – the prom is probably better for that
no. there is plenty of footpath and no we don’t need more cycle lanes!
The street needs to accomodate cars. So unless you somehow widen the street there are not many options. Reduce the speed limit to 20mph.
the biggest problem are traffic jams and pollution; otherwise the Hig St is pretty good for cyclists\pedestrians
Yes, avoid it!
Widen payments. Provide protected cycle lane. More cycle racks. Move the monthly market onto the wide pavement of the High Street near the Town Hall.
Well maintained pavements.
not sure
Make better use of pavement area in frknt of bank, town hall and a long to include some of space towards library. Stop parking on yellow lines and create bike lanes.
Fines for dog fouling. Crossing at the Jaffle Joint on the High Street is tight on that side to pass. Less boards, etc on the high street from shops. Tackle the antisocial behaviour.
it’s difficult, traffic has to be able to travel freely, Harry Lauder road cannot take any more traffic so forcing people away from the high street is not an option but a little thought would be a great help. the bus stop going to town outside Favors is ridiculous for example, the road narrows for the crossing so much that if two buses are at the stop it holds up traffic all the way back to Windsor place, why not have it where vehicles can move past the buses when they stop and keep the traffic flowing to some degree?
wider pavements more benches
Pavement enlargement in the areas indicated above as being too narrow would be much appreciated. It would be hard to get properly segregated cycle lanes, but that is really the best option for cyclists, especially younger ones. Also more places to park bikes would be great – maybe the empty space at the top of Malborough Street?
Cycle lanes,
Keep up pavement maintenance. Introduce car free zones/days?
Less dog poo! There is still far too much left lying around. Need to enforce rules.
See above answer re heavy vehicles.
There are very few places to lock a bike on the High St if you are shopping.
No parking on Main Street except for deliveries
More cycle lanes. Combined pedestrian and cycles on Brighton Place
The high street looks poor , could do with some sort of planting or greenery .
Other than turning it into a pedestrian centre which is not really viable given the amount or traffic that currently has to go through Portobello. However it might be an idea to put a stop on further large property developments which only add to the already impossible traffic situation.
Bike racks for cyclists where the pavement width supports it. More attractive and modern seating with planters, trees or artwork where the pavement width supports it. I would never meet up with anyone and sit somewhere on the High Street as there’s nowhere to do it at the moment. If there was somewhere nice to sit I would consider it. 20 mph along the High Street. More bins are also needed – bigger ones and more of them.
In my view it is not necessary to once again start re-shaping the centre of Portobello. What was done before is working very well!
It’s not a town centre. Creating that feel would have a beneficial effect.
Some well placed bike storage points would help.
Sorry not sure
Make the High St 20mph (which I think is in progress)Put a big raised table at the Fishwives Causeway lights and the Bath St crossroads and change the paving to give a visual message to car drivers that they are in a place with priority for walkers and cyclists.Close the High St to through traffic on Sundays as a pilot and consider doing so permanently – through traffic can use Harry Lauder Rd.

Use space currently used for car parking on the High St to create a cycle lane and keep it going all the way down the road to Fisherrow.

Connect the High St to the beachfront better so that people on foot and on bike can easily move between the two – make the streets in between sea and High St an inviting safe environment for people, maybe close some of them to cars.

It’s fine
Big free car park on the outside with dedicated pedestrian paths and cycling lanes.
it’s plain dangerous on bikes due to parked cars. Walking is fine.
The bus stop to town at west end of High St was moved too near the King’s Road junction to accommodate a development on the Scottish Power site which didn’t happen. The result is that buses often can’t get to the bus stop because of queuing traffic, which causes major delays for bus travellers especially as the drivers are often changing there.
More bike locking points outside sainsbury please
Walking is fine, roads are too narrow for parked cars, cyclists and/or buses, trucks or cars to coexist
Sort the pavements
More places to park bikes. Lots more. You want your bike to be close to the shop you’re in for convenience and for keeping an eye on it. The useable road is too narrow for cars AND bikes. It doesn’t feel safe with the traffic so close, no separation. Also, bikes can hold the traffic up from Brighton Place to the Daisy Park. Notice boards illustrating the shops along the High Street might be good – there is so much beyond Bath Street: doggy treat shop, Two Sisters, art framing shop, Sainsbury’s, the Skylark, Cove, eateries, the Velvet Easel, 12 Triangles. You get info boards in shopping malls, and Portobello is just an outside mall. I wonder about a large electronic, live “Departures” board for buses in the town centre. It would enable you to time your visit, knowing how much time you have for a cappuccino in Nonny’s before the next 49 (as in my case). That’s just a mad idea from left field.
Segregated cycle lane; reduction in clutter
Bike lanes and parking would be a good start. Bike security is an issue (e.g. many bikes have been stolen from outside the pool). Reduce the number of buses coming through Portobello (and the whole city). I cannot understand why there are so many bus routes – surely one (regular) bus going from Portobello into town is enough.
Yes – implementing changes similar to the Mini Holland scheme in Walthamstow, where Copenhagen crossings are installed on all side streets, and all side streets have been closed to through traffic. The impact for pedestrians in Walthamstow has been remarkable. It is now much easier to walk through the shopping area, and feel safe at junctions. Accident numbers have been reduced, and traffic on side streets has been halved, making residential streets much more pleasant.
Not sure. Doesn’t look like there would be enough room for pedestrian areas
Reduce the traffic somehow!
More purpose made bike racks for locking up bicycles should be installed. Unfortunately it is hard to see how other physical improvements could be made given the space limitations.
Cycle pathsWider pavementsTraffic lights that don’t take about 3 minutes to change
A few more crossings. Obviously pedestrianising the high street would make it better for pedestrians but that would seem to be an impossibility.

Q7. Any other comments?

Tax breaks to encourage shop use. A better plan for what kind of shops we need as a community. Rationalisation of signage to make it feel more cohesive. Empty shops could be used as art/ display spaces until a use is found. Empty shop owners should be required to clean their frontages/ remove mail/graffiti etc to make them look less abandoned. Think about colour! Painting shop grind with a planned colour scheme would make it all look nicer and more interesting.
A wider variety of shops would benefit the town, along with a more uniform approach to shop signage, that is sympathetic to the Georgian and Victorian character of the high street.
I propose a sort of uniformity or USP for the high street portobello by way of awnings on the front of shops (with grant assistance ideally) to provide a unique old world feel to the High street
Portobello is great! :)
Why does the identified range stop so early at the west? Surely the shops right to also should be included
Portobello is a nightmare traffic wise !
Prepared to discuss these issues further
Consistency of signage and shop fronts in terms of colours and style would be appreciated to strengthen a sense of character and place for the high street.
A consideration of the pavement materials, at least replacement of broken pavers and at best replacement with a high quality natural stone material. Again consistency in materiality would reinforce a sense of place and feel of arrival at a destination.
Similarly a policy to either encourage some or discourage too much (the cafe on bath street!) spill out into the street with tables, chairs, sensible signage etc.
It would be nice to widen the street as with the new influx traffic is going to increase but there is no real possibility of this.
Portobello has a great community feel to it. The presence of small local shops are essential. I would like to see the Police Station open more and great Police presence. We are occasionally subjected to unruly crowds of young people, especially in Portobello library.
Gateway features have gone – these are required. Portobello is a community rich in artists – let them create a permanent welcome at either end of the High Street.
A huge opportunity to revitalise Portobello High Street. I would welcome any proposals.
Would be great to see more development of the beach and prom as it is our ‘extended high street’.
Why not use the town hall for more public events?
It doesn’t seem that long since the High Street was upgraded with new pavement surfaces. Some of the shop fronts are looking sad and dilapidated and at the far west end the larger shops even more so.
Restore the rail link to the city centre and
Cars are the biggest blight on our town centre. It seems that the Council’s vision for Portobello is a 20th Century-style trunk road with shops. Reduce traffic flow, widen pavements and make it easy for us to cross the road please.
Rebuild a tasteful community Pier!
Can someone remove the petty/childish and divisive notice board outside that cafe opposite the police station please….it is stupid
pity that some good local businesses have been killed off due to high rents or overly rigid planning guidelines (like lovely cafe that shut down a few years ago because they weren’t allowed more than six tables). Street furniture is poor. No Christmas lights! And yet Portobello is on the tourist trail. Need good well maintained public loos. Speaking to traders, high rents and stranglehold over shop units by a ‘handful of landlords’ is serving us badly.
The high street has lots of potential and needs help for independents to keep it feeling local and relevant.
Keep the public toilets open. If you are shopping and there is no toilet you are going to go home early or to a shopping centre that does have a toilet. Toilets don’t need to be free, they could actually earn their keep! Closing things costs money not saves money!
This is much needed. Porty high street is in need of measures to improve shopping and quality of experience. It is hardly a destination at night except for a few pubs n takeaway outlets. Traffic management is a big issue. Parking on pavements doesn’t help either. I’ve pretty much given up on Porty high street preferring Musselburgh for a local shopping experience – sadly
something must be done before the large brunstane development and other developements around protobello are completed.
Pavements round Abercorn park,which I appreciate is just outside town centre but which is much used by both residents and visitors would benefit from upgrading .
So glad there are no Christmas lights this year, what a waste of time, money, effort and energy don’t get them back, ever! Please not ever, give the money to charity if its just going to get thrown away like that. Also the red light from the police station clock looks more fitting for Halloween.
Portobello needs a High Street that maintains some of the historical character of the town but not at the expense of function and sustainability. We need schemes to encourage more people in Portobello and Joppa to use the High Street, which in turn will support a wider range of better quality businesses. I have lived here since 1999 and there have been some marked improvements in the past 4/5 years but there does need to be some support for further progress. There needs also to be some action on areas where smokers gather in numbers (outside some pubs for example) this can make these no go areas for some
The one property that I really would like to see restored and refurbished is the old Victorian Tearooms on the corner of Adelphi Place and the High Street. Obviously, some of the frontage of the building on Adelphi Place has been recently been repaired. If only the Cafe and flats above could be cleaned up too.
Shops at the western end of the High Street are often empty, hopefully may get more business when the Baileyfield development is built.
The volumes of vehicles going through Porty is a big problem. Air quality being one/ The buses are hampered by traffic and walking and cycling is less attractive than sitting in a comfy car listening to the radio. Shift the priority to walking, cycling and public transport and cars will gradually reduce making it a much better place to spend time in.
Council should be clamping down on litter louts, town looks down enough without rubbish lying in the street
A general tidy up of messy shop fronts, paintwork refreshed would make a difference.
The area is historic and suffers from narrow streets, unsuitable for modern traffic. The backstreets don’t link up so difficult to make a one way system and no space for a park and ride.
No more Turkish barbers please, Istanbul must be getting hairy.
Porty High Street is brilliant but needs love and care both from residents who need to think twice about nipping to Aldi for bread when there are 4 bakers (Twelve triangles, Earthy, Baines and Greggs) etc and also from town planners who can support with small amounts of funding for events which attract people to the street and by maintaining and extending the infrastructure (e.g. the public loos are wonderful and it’s great there are benches but we need more bike racks)
I love living here!
The Portobello of my childhood had a very different feel to it. For many years the High Street, prom and surrounding streets were very run down, but recently there has been a distinct improvement. Much still needs to be done, however, to make it once again a charming, friendly and pleasant place to shop, walk, drive and enjoy the fresh sea breezes.
Incentives for shop keepers to improve their frontages. Encourage a nice local Italian to open up!
No lights for Christmas – not great. Please no more hairdressers and beauty places. Need to encourage people to park and stop not fine them. Don’t let short sited local businesses say a car park is now staff only and fine people parking there. Support local businesses. Get breadshare a good venue in the centre. Encourage resteraunts to open.
Porty needs more community space.
Install cycle parking hoops on all lampposts. Enforce 20mph. Tow away vehicles parked on pavements.
A car park a bit nearer the centre than Bridge Street would be helpful
I’m not a planner but I think that the epicentre of Porty is undoubtedly the Bath Street – Brighton Place lights. At the moment however the unbroken expanse of concrete slabs outside the Bank of Scotland, occupied only by a few lonely benches, doesn’t signal a vibrant community. It will perhaps be better when the street trees mature but at the moment it seems a bit arid when it should have the feeling of an old mercat cross or village square. It should feel like a meeting place, an informal marketplace – very much a public space. This site is an historic crossroads and even if it has no ancient monument or prestige building, the use of good layout and subtle street furniture can make it a more emphatic centre. It’s great that political campaigning happens there – that’s as it should be – but let’s make the space look like it is our civic heart.
More places to eat good food.
it is still a relatively vibrant High St compared to other town centres, inspire of many changes it has undergone; I see a potential problem of serious reduction in footfall if the Co-op was forced to close its doors as a result of the competition by big supermarkets
The high street and surrounding areas will be impacted heavily by all of the current plans to build hundreds of flats on every available piece of land. the high street is already very congested and the problem will be increased by these and it will be spread onto the surrounding streets, which are already experiencing issues.
Portobello is a community that is struggling and won’t admit it. The local infrastructure is heaving at the seams yet provision had been made for MORE people to move into the area. Local shops and entertainment facilities are poor, there are too many youths hanging around causing trouble anda community police presence is practically non existent. Until the Portobello Community Council wake up to the real problems rather than focusing on trendy toppings like making there area more cyclist friendly, things are only going to get worse.
Still seems a lack of coordination between local businesses – could a dedicated person bring together different initiatives to promote local shopping? A scheme in the winter to encourage local spending linked to a Christmas Raffle draw? A summer scheme to encourage visitors to spend in local shops, either day-visitors or longer-term ones. Possible local membership scheme of some sort to further encourage local spending?
- how the shopping area can cater for adults with children- and young people by themselves- the importance of supporting independent shops and finding ways of linking the foot traffic on the Prom with the foot traffic on the High St to support local shops – maintaining external of vacant shops to ensure filling vacancies and for attractiveness
Mostly during the day it is a very pleasant place to be but there are one or two pubs that spill out onto the high street at night that are a problem with anti social behaviour and noise levels. There is also a bit of a problem with teenage anti social behaviour in the area.
Glad to see this being thought about.
Williamfield Square is an eyesore and detracts from the High Street, especially the scaffolding that has been up for months
more community venues (like what is proposed for bellfield church)
Would love to see the High Street area extend down to the bottom of Bath Street – there is a cafe half way down and three at the bottom – it feels very much like a continuation of the main street.
Portobello has a lovely “village” atmosphere, it would be really sad if we lost that.
Please upgrade the public toilets both on beach front and Bath Street. Portobello is becoming ever more popular and needs much better facilities (people still urinate in the street in parts, unfortunately).
It must be brought home to school children that if they come to Portobello at lunch time they must not drop their lunch debris on the street. fast food outlets must encourage their customers to use bins. During term time the High Street is best avoided at lunch times. It can be difficult to get served in some shops.
A variety of shops should be actively encouraged.
It’s a conservation area. Can the council veto unsuitable shop signs / logos?
Not good enough mixture of business for business to thrive , nothing much happening along the prom feel it’s not being utilised . Public toilets need to be kept open in the summer . There isn’t enough places just to go for a drink . The high street looks poor and shabby needs a facelift in Oder to keep people visiting .
I understand the need for new properties to be build however these are very rarely “affordable” or suitable for single people or the elderly (not all elderly people want to live/can afford to live in flats with large service charges). With the several new developments in recent times in the area, the traffic has gotten worse as many families have two cars. Although having said that, car owners should not be regarded as the ‘bad guys’, after all, many of them need to commute by car to get to work as bus journeys are either not viable or take far too long. For the most part people want to live in communities that are safe and balanced, that offer them all the services and facilities necessary. For example Phoenix House should really have been turned into a community hospital (similar to the one in Leith) but instead it is converted into extremely expensive apartments – very nice but a community hospital would have served the people better. Likewise the George in Bath Street – permission is being sought for conversion into 20 flats – Bath Street does not need more flats!! Planners need to be more accountable and considerate of the community.
Leave Portobello alone and spend your money on projects that are more needful!
Parking not great really for people visiting the area
Please get some new clothing shops as in new clothes not second hand, outdoor camping shops, camera shop, more art galleries, more stationers, boots, Holland and Barrett, water stones, or other book shop,
Great that the High Street is being looked at. It has so much potential. Need to avoid having the usual chains of cafes, shops as everywhere else to keep it special and attractive= worth a trip. Portobello needs to remain an alternative place with independent businesses to keep its identity.
It would be good to have a much stricter policy on shop fronts to encourage good design and respect for the heritage. There are some good examples but we are nowhere near as good as Stockbridge and Morningside. Why is Portobello neglected?
More frequent uplifting of the communal bins is required as these often over flow.Buses using bus stands to pull in to allow traffic to pass. Double yellow lines outside baptist church to limit parking and allow traffic to flow.
More effort is required to give portobello an identity and make it look like a lively seaside community
Really, too many charity shops. Portobello’s best shops are mostly away from the central area around the Town Hall. The central area is still looking a bit run down although there are good shops there – Findlay’s, the fishmonger, wine shop, delicatessen. The pavement there is too narrow for greengrocer’s boxes, tables and chairs and bus stops with folk waiting. The area in front of the Bank of Scotland might be developed a bit more as an information point, bringing the local history noticeboards together with more info about the shops and other community info. It’s a good central point for bike parking, too. And that live bus departures board.
The town centre boundary misses out a number of premises on the south side on the High St, either side of the junction with Windsor Pl.
Councils need to stop allowing new developments to be built around private car use. There are currently a huge number of developments planned in and around Portobello. Something more than tinkering at the edges needs to be done to prevent ever increasing traffic levels ruining the sense of community we have.At the moment there are many residential streets in Portobello which are impossible to walk down without walking in the road, due to the number of cars parked on the pavements.The Walthamstow Mini Holland project is already showing that lowering traffic has much wider impacts on how the community uses public spaces, as well as peoples’ general health and well-being. It’s time we designed public areas with genuine priority given to people on foot/bike or using public transport, rather than considering them as an afterthought
The portobello side of the high st is very cheap looking. I know of one person who would love to live by the sea but would avoid portobello because of this.
The Portobello community is very fortunate to have such a vibrant High Street. Its independent businesses are its lifeblood and what make it special. Everything must be done to ensure these continue to thrive. The public realm is fine, small improvements could be made, using sympathetic materials, better streetscaping etc.
Honestly, I like the idea of a vibrant local high street, but in reality do nothing to support that unless it is easy and convenient for me. It doesn’t help that the RBS is closing down as this was one of the reasons I came into Porty.
need some fresh fruit and veg shops