Dublin City’s Green Party councillors have broadly welcomed the city council’s ambitious Interim Mobility Intervention Programme.
The plan includes significant changes to the city centre and for the urban villages around the city, primarily focused on widening footpaths, improving bus priority, and expanding protected cycling infrastructure.
It sets out a guiding philosophy for the changes, with specific measures proposed on an intitial fourteeen routes.
The document was put before Councillors today, based on work by Dublin City Council and the National Transport Authority. It aims to get Dublin moving again and to support the economic recovery while keeping public health foremost.
The report notes that public transport capacity will fall by 80% due to social distancing requirements. To rectify this, the report calls for a doubling of walking journeys and a trebling of cycling journeys.
Janet Horner, Councillor for the North Inner City and a member of the city’s transport committee said:
“We should not underestimate the scale of the problem we face. Allowing for the decreased capacity of public transport, supporting walking and cycling is the only way we can avoid the catastrophe of congestion and a huge increase in air pollution associated with it. The measures outlined here are vital for a return to work.
“This plan will be very welcome to many – particularly those who are more vulnerable using our streets, including children, older people and people with disabilities. I am pleased to see issues addressed to improve walking and cycling in urban villages in the city and not just the city centre. This is key to supporting the small businesses who are the lifeblood of our communities, now more than ever”
Michael Pidgeon, Green Party Group Leader on Dublin City Council and Councillor for the South West Inner City said:
“We are in an old city with hard limits on road space. With public transport capacity down, Dublin’s roads will simply not be able to take extra car journeys. Cycling and walking offers the greatest bang for your buck when it comes to road space. We’ll need to move people quickly, sustainably and in volume. It’s got to be cycling and walking.
“We will be studying individual measures closely, but the Council officials have the right philosophy and ambition in this. The case for sustainable transport has never been clearer.”
Donna Cooney, Councillor for Clontarf and social enterprise BYCS’ Cycling Mayor for Dublin said:
“These are exactly the kind of measures that they city as a whole needs. But we need to extend this thinking to more and more spaces. For example, we know that Fairview is one of the most dangerous parts of the city for cyclists. That’s a route which needs to similar action. The Council have the right idea – we just need to see more of it.”