Delivery evaluation – Where and how were the audits conducted? What did the audits find?

Geographical distribution of included CSA/SRA projects across Scotland - places as listed in the text.
Figure 18: Geographical distribution of included CSA/SRA projects across Scotland (Map data © 2023 GoogleMaps)

Characteristics of the evaluated CSA/SRA projects

The sixteen evaluated CSA/SRA projects represent a geographic spread across Scotland and settlement types. There was a fairly even rural-urban split, with nine projects in rural locations (56%) and seven projects in an urban setting (44%). The settlement types included were varied, including two rural villages (13%), seven rural towns (44%), two large towns (13%), and five city settings (31%). Of note is that while Dingwall and Lossiemouth are within the Highlands and Islands Enterprise Area, no projects were available from the Islands or more remote rural settings. Despite this limitation, the included selection broadly represents settlement types in Scotland.

Table 1: Representation of settlement characteristics in the CSA/SRA projects
No. Report name Settlement Population Settlement type
1 Lower Speed Communities - Lossiemouth Lossiemouth 6,840 Rural town
2 Making Room for Pedestrians - Moniaive Moniaive <865 Rural village
3 Lower Speed Communities - Mount Florida Mount Florida, Glasgow 1,028,220 Urban suburb
4 Living Streets Audit - Dingwall Dingwall 5,360 Rural town
5 Community Street Audit Report, Inverurie Town Centre Inverurie 14,660 Rural town
6 Community Street Audit Report Pitlochry Pitlochry 2,880 Rural town
7 Community Street Audit of Broich Road and Routes to School, Crieff Crieff 7,280 Rural town
8 A Community Street Audit Report of Streets in The Gorbals, Glasgow The Gorbals, Glasgow 1,028,220 Urban suburb
9 Street Audit Report for 'The Hen Hooses', Torry, Aberdeen Torry, Aberdeen 220,690 Urban suburb
10 Edinburgh Cowgate - Community Street Audit Report Cowgate, Edinburgh 530,990 Urban suburb
11 A Community Street Audit of a Route in Markinch, Fife Markinch, Fife 2,428 Rural town
12 Community Street Audit Report - Glenrothes Glenrothes 44,760 Large Town
13 Community Street Audit Report - For Falkirk Area Disability and Access Panel Falkirk Grahamston Station to Falkirk Retail Park Falkirk 103,380 Large Town
14 Walkable Communities. A Community Street Audit of a Route in Dailly Dailly <1,652 Rural village
15 Walkable Inverleith Project Report Deanhaugh Street, Raeburn Place and Comely Bank Road, Edinburgh Inverleith, Edinburgh 530,990 Urban suburb
16 Community Street Audit Report - Banff Banff 4,000 Rural town


The included projects represent a range across SIMD deciles. Three projects (19% of all projects) include areas from the most deprived 10%. A total of six projects (38%) had areas within the most deprived 20%. Only two projects (13%) are located in areas of the least deprived 30%. About eight projects (50%) can be described as mixed SIMD, including areas above and below the mid-point. For this evaluation, the sample was considered a relevant representation across SIMDs as it includes some of the most deprived areas of Scotland.

Table 2: Representation of SIMD characteristics across included CSA/SRA projects
No. Settlement Local authority SIMD deciles
1 Lossiemouth Moray Council 7, 7, 4
2 Moniaive Dumfries and Galloway Council 6
3 Mount Florida, Glasgow Glasgow City Council 8, 2, 3
4 Dingwall The Highland Council 6, 2, 4, 9
5 Inverurie Aberdeenshire Council 8, 4, 6, 7
6 Pitlochry Perth and Kinross 9, 8
7 Crieff Perth and Kinross 6, 4, 5
8 The Gorbals, Glasgow Glasgow City Council 1, 1, 1, 4, 1, 5, 2
9 Torry, Aberdeen Aberdeen City 1, 1, 3
10 Cowgate, Edinburgh City of Edinburgh Council 6, 2
11 Markinch, Fife Fife Council 6, 8, 6
12 Glenrothes Fife Council 3, 1, 10
13 Falkirk Falkirk Council 3
14 Daily South Ayrshire Council 4, 5
15 Inverleith, Edinburgh City of Edinburgh 9, 10, 10, 10
16 Banff Aberdeenshire Council 4


1 = most deprived, 10 = least deprived

Settlement numbers 3, 4, 8, 9, 10 and 12 include the most deprived 20%

Settlement numbers 6 and 15 include the least deprived 30% only

Commissioning and timeline

While there are sixteen projects included in the evaluation, six had two audits resulting in twenty-two CSAs and SRAs. Thirteen CSAs (59%) and 9 SRAs (41%) were included. Most projects were commissioned by a local authority partner (88%), with only two commissioned by a community group (13%). Thirteen local authority areas are covered across the sixteen projects. In three cases, the local authority had commissioned a series of CSAs: the City of Edinburgh Council commissioned six, Perth & Kinross Council commissioned eleven, and Aberdeenshire Council commissioned seven. The audits were conducted between 2014 and 2019. From 2020, Living Streets paused the auditing process due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Strategic and amenity value of audit routes

The routes were selected with the local community partners and represent short, everyday journeys. Twelve (75%) project routes included a high street or retail centre, thirteen (81%) projects included schools and/or a college or nursery facility, fourteen projects (88%) included access to a greenspace or park, seven (54%) included a major transport interchange such as a local train or bus station (not including local bus services). All sixteen (100%) project locations included a community or medical facility such as a sports centre or hospital. As such, the selected audit routes are of high amenity value and overlap with core everyday walking zones for each settlement.

The audit routes are understandably walking scale. The average audit route length is 1.3 km, with a range from the shortest route of 0.5 km to the longest of 2.8km. From the perspective of a more vulnerable user, such as a child or an older person, a distance of 1.3 km represents about 26 minutes of walking (Based on a walking speed of 3 km per hour). For a non-disabled person, this same distance represents less than 20 minutes of walking (Based on a walking speed of 5 km per hour). As such, the audit routes fall within core walking distance potential and given the high amenity value, relate well to the emerging 20-Minute Neighbourhood agenda.

Engagement and community

The audits demonstrated a strong approach to community engagement. Fourteen (88%) projects included additional engagement before or after audit walkabouts. These ranged from interviews, facilitated workshops, mapping, and drop-in sessions to social media engagement, posters, and questionnaires. Just over half of the projects (10) included collaboration with a local school or college.

A person in a mobility scooter, a local councillor, a road safety officer, a regional transport partnership officer and a Living Streets officer walk along a street in a residential area.
Figure 19: The community street audit walkabout in Dingwall, including a local resident in a mobility scooter, a local councillor, and a road safety officer (Image © Living Streets)

Focus on inclusion

All projects had a stated inclusion focus which ranged from meeting the walking needs of children to enabling walking for older people and Disabled people, including specific mobility needs such as the use of a mobility scooter, wheelchair, guide dog, sight cane, or pushchair. Six audits were conducted with children (38%), and six were conducted with Disabled people (38%). Two projects included older people (13%). However, in both cases, the inclusion of older people was through engagement and consultation separate from the audit walkabout. Nine audit processes included representatives of Disabled people, and/or older people and children, which included local parents or members of parent councils and officers from local or national Disability groups. Overall, the inclusion focus of the audits was strong, with fifteen projects (94%) engaging Disabled people, older people and children, and/or their representatives, in the audit walkabouts.

Table 3: Summary of participant inclusion of audit walkabouts
No. Settlement Disabled people Older people Children Representatives
1 Lossiemouth n/a n/a Yes n/a
2 Moniaive n/a n/a Yes n/a
3 Mount Florida, Glasgow n/a n/a Yes Parents
4 Dingwall Yes (mobility scooter) n/a Yes n/a
5 Inverurie Yes (wheelchair user) n/a n/a n/a
6 Pitlochry Yes (visually impaired people) Yes* n/a n/a
7 Crieff n/a n/a n/a Parents, school staff
8 The Gorbals, Glasgow n/a n/a Yes Parents, school staff
9 Torry, Aberdeen n/a n/a Yes Parents, carers, school staff
10 Cowgate, Edinburgh Yes n/a n/a Participant from the Edinburgh Access panel
11 Markinch, Fife no direct inclusion participation no direct inclusion participation no direct inclusion participation no direct inclusion participation
12 Glenrothes n/a n/a n/a Participant Glenrothes Youth Forum
13 Falkirk Yes (motorised wheelchair users, visually impaired user with cane) n/a n/a n/a
14 Daily n/a n/a n/a member of Dailly Primary School Parent Council, parent
15 Inverleith, Edinburgh Yes (guide dog user) n/a n/a Guide Dogs Scotland Community Officer
16 Banff n/a Yes* n/a Dementia Friendly Aberdeenshire*


*Indicates this was facilitated in pre- or post- walkabout engagement

Areas in number 11 highlight where there was no direct inclusion participation

Community identified recommendations

Each audit identified issues and then made recommendations for improvements along the route. The median number of community recommendations identified per audit was thirty-eight, with the lowest number of recommendations being fifteen and the highest 136 within one audit.­ Across all sixteen evaluations, a total of 732 recommendations were identified. Analysing these by broad category shows that the majority (59%) of recommendations are for walking infrastructure improvements, followed by crossings (11%) and improvements to the carriageway (11%). These broader categories reveal that the identified recommendations could typically fall across different services for the local authority partner.

Table 4: Summary of total community identified recommendations by category
Recommendations by category Quantity %
Footway & assets 431 59
Crossings 78 11
Carriageway improvements 78 11
Cross-service collaboration 55 8
Maintenance 51 7
Active travel behaviour change 39 5
Total Measures 732 100

The identified recommendations were classified into twenty different types, which demonstrates the highly variable nature of the recommendations. Exploring these in detail reveals that the most frequently identified recommendations were footway repairs (20%), followed by drop kerb and tactiles (13%), and footway improvements such as widening, new footpaths, or footpath extensions (8%). New crossings, including signalised (4%), informal crossings such as zebra crossings and traffic islands (5%), and continuous footways at side junctions (2%), were also important. All crossings combined made up 11% of the recommendations. The overall scale of the recommendations is small and can be defined as minor measures.

Table 5: Summary of community-identified recommendations by type across CSA/SRAs
Category Recommendation type Quantity %
Footway & assets Place quality 20 3
Footway & assets Footway quality & repair* 143 20
Footway & assets Footway connectivity and widening* 62 8
Footway & assets Drop kerbs & tactile paving* 97 13
Footway & assets Footway assets / benches 37 5
Footway & assets Pedestrian Signage 19 3
Footway & assets Decluttering 53 7
Crossings Signalised crossings 32 4
Crossings Informal crossings / non-signalised 34 5
Crossings Side junctions 12 2
Carriageway Road Signage 20 3
Carriageway Road markings 19 3
Carriageway Road layout 18 2
Carriageway Parking 19 3
Cross-service collaboration Enforcement & management 51 7
Cross-service collaboration Bus routing 4 1
Maintenance Footway maintenance 40 5
Maintenance Drainage 6 1
Maintenance Lighting 5 1
Active travel behaviour change Travel plans & engagement 39 5
All categories Total measures 732 100


*shows three most frequently identified community recommendations