asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what assistance or advice his Department is giving to Edinburgh Corporation on traffic problems.
My Department is represented at meetings of the working party which the corporation has set up to advise on the future traffic pattern in the city. The corporation also consults the Department about short-term traffic measures.
Is the hon. Gentleman aware that the traffic problems in Edinburgh are getting worse every day? What has happened to the ring road? Will he take up with the Minister of Transport the question of retaining the surburban railways, particularly in the light of experience in Canada and the United States, where they are being brought back? Will he see that we retain Caledonian Station, which is a valuable asset for railway purposes?
I appreciate the point, but the problem hinges on the submission of the quinquennial review by the corporation, which is at liberty to commission any transportation study it wishes, but at the moment my Department is concerned about the procedure under the review. When that review comes forward will be the time to make decisions in principle on a comprehensive assessment of the situation, including the position of suburban commuters and the railways.