TRADERS and residents have called for a rethink of road closures in the capital amid claims rerouting plans have cut off families and firms.

Edinburgh City Council said drivers in the West End could soon find their journey easier after the plea by traders and residents.

A review of traffic management following the start of the controversial trams system has led to recommendations to allow traffic westbound from Hope Street to Queensferry Street, rather than buses only as at present, after the local challenge.

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Traders from the West End called for the change in a deputation to the council. They said the closure of the left turn from Lothian Road into Shandwick Place because of the trams made it difficult for cars, cycles and taxis to get to addresses in the West End.

The report also asks councillors to give the go-ahead for further investigation into the option of introducing a right turn from Queen Street westbound into Queen Street Gardens East.

Another recommendation, which follows on from the start of the new experimental part-pedestrianisation of George Street, is to change the priority of Young Street from an eastbound to a westbound direction.

The council said residents and businesses had expressed concern about increased traffic, especially more vans and heavy good vehicles, since the George Street scheme was implemented earlier this summer.

Transport convener Lesley Hinds said: "The proposal to open up Hope Street for all westbound traffic into Queensferry Street should make things much better."