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Key road works planned

Preparatory work begins on Edinburgh tram extension

Edinburgh’s tram route will be extended 


Contractors will begin preparatory work on extending Edinburgh’s Tram line to Newhaven at various points on the route from later this month.

Ground and site investigation work has been programmed for a number of locations between York Place and Newhaven, starting in Lindsay Road from 20 May.

Separately – but planned in conjunction with these works – the Council’s roads team will be embarking on a major road resurfacing project in a number of streets* surrounding the tram route.

The essential pre-enabling works programmed by the tram project’s systems and infrastructure contractor Sacyr, Farrans, Neopul (SFN) will involve detailed ground investigation works at 25 sites along the route. The work will be carried out in sections of approximately 100 metres at a time and is programmed to be completed by mid-July.

The purpose of these works is to determine the ground conditions along the length of the route so that the project’s final design can be confirmed.

SFN will check the ground conditions and depth of the bedrock along the route, for example to see how deep tram infrastructure foundations need to be, as well as the dimensions of the ‘slab track’ which will be laid under the tram track itself.

Meanwhile, the capital roads scheme works that are due to begin on Abercromby Place on 27 May have been brought forward from 2020 to make sure the road network surrounding the tram construction area is in good condition for when traffic diversions are put in place.

The work, part of the Council’s investment in roads and footways across the city (£125m over four years), will include resurfacing the carriageway, pedestrian access and public realm improvements and traffic signal upgrades well as signalising the junction at Easter Road/Lochend Road and Duke Street.

new tram route

Route extension


Information about the ground/site investigation and road resurfacing projects will be communicated to directly-affected residents and businesses in advance of work starting.

Councillor Lesley Macinnes, Transport Convener, said: “There’s going to be a fair bit of work going on in and around the Leith Walk area over the next few months and we’re keen to make sure people have as much information as possible about what’s happening and why.

“Both projects are aimed at helping the Trams to Newhaven construction phase go as smoothly as possible. We’ll manage the works extremely closely to minimise noise and disturbance and we would like to thank residents in advance for their understanding while these essential projects are completed.”

Alejandro Mendoza, SFN Project Director, explained: “These ground investigation works are vital to our early involvement. The information we obtain on the ground conditions will allow our design team to develop a robust final design. It will also help us inform key elements such as the construction plan and any effects that may have on traffic management arrangements.”

Works will be carried out in a number of locations on Ocean Drive, Leith Walk, Elm Row, Lindsay Road, Constitution Street and Melrose Drive.

Capital road renewals programme – roads affected: Abercromby Place, Dublin Street, Albany Street, Broughton Street, East London Street, Annandale Street, Hopetoun Street, McDonald Road, Broughton Road, Bonnington Road, Newhaven Road, Pilrig Street, Academy Street, Duncan Place, Links Place, Great Junction Street, Gordon Street, Vanburgh Place, Dalmeny Street, North Leith Sands, Ocean Drive, East Hermitage Place, Easter Road.


A long-term ambition to extend the tram route over North Bridge to the BioQuarter and Edinburgh Royal Infirmary is also part of the council’s ambitious strategy to “create a city centre that truly puts people first”.

A city centre tram loop could also be constructed, which would connect Haymarket with Morrison Street, Lauriston Place, Potterrow and Edinburgh University.

Car parking would be gradually reduced across the city centre, with George Street, Victoria Street and Cockburn Street losing parking space altogether.

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