One of the new 55m Luas trams on O’Connell Bridge, Dublin last week
Justin McCarthy, of RTE, reports:
The Dáil has been told that passengers taking the new Luas Cross City line at rush hour would be “quicker walking” because of congestion in Dublin city centre.
The claim was made by Fianna Fáil’s transport spokesman Robert Troy.
He said he took the Cross City line from Dawson Street to O’Connell Street this morning “in order to experience for myself the length of time”.
“It took 20 minutes, I would have been quicker walking,” he said.
“Coming back I took a taxi in order to be here for Question Time. [It took] 25 minutes.
Previously: Bridge of Sighs
Ormond Quay, Dublin 1 yesterday
Further to the reduction of car lanes along Dublin’s quays to one and cars no longer being able to turn right onto O’Connell Bridge from Bachelors Walk…
This frustration of those who commute by car is misdirected at Dublin City Council, when it is their fellow motorists who are better placed to alleviate the problem.
Dublin City Council will inevitably attempt to promote methods of transport which are more efficient in bringing people to the highly congested city centre.
Private cars are the least efficient method possible in terms of road space, parking space, energy consumption and pollution. While there will always be a need for private cars for certain individuals, their present use among city centre commuters is excessive.
If the only people insisting on using private cars to commute were those who genuinely could not use other means, be it due to infirmity, distance or a lack of a reasonable public transport alternative, the congestion in the city centre would be a much smaller problem.
The reality is that commuters in areas of Dublin such as my own, which are well served by public transport and within cycling distance of the city centre, continue to drive past the bus stop 10 metres from their front door on their way to work.
Restrictions are only necessary because certain commuters need greater incentives to change their behaviour.
Once they do, the commute will be easier for everyone, including those who need to drive.
Bride Street, Dublin 8.
Just a centaur. Out walking his horse.
Earlier: Right So
defied death cycled from College Green to Westmoreland St and on to O’Connell Street in Dublin.
The journey prompted her to write an open letter to Dublin City Council.
Hi Dublin City Council, after nearly being crushed to death under a car wheel [yesterday] morning trying to cycle in one tiny lane shared by buses, cyclists, cars and taxis, from College Green on to Westmoreland St, I then faced, (as all cyclists on this route do every day) the prospect of this ‘wall of steel’ in order to get from Westmoreland St straight down onto O’Connell St.
This is the scene every single day here, right outside Bewleys (Starbucks, whatever) if you’re going straight ahead. I am not a nervous cyclist by any means, but this is absolutely *terrifying*.
Most bus drivers here do their best I feel to look out for us – but they shouldn’t have to! And I’ve had more than one conversation with bus drivers hanging out their window who think it’s ridiculous too!
There is NO provision for cyclists here and it is only a minor *miracle* that’s someone has not been killed yet. What is being done about it and when can we expect change?
The pedestrian-only plaza planned for College Green which will prevent traffic from crossing between College Green and Dame Street
Essential bus routes providing cross-city services linking northeast to southwest, and northwest to southeast Dublin, carry thousands of commuters every day. Approximately 23 routes travel along Dame Street, and a further 20 go around Trinity to Nassau Street.
In addition, there are large numbers of coaches bringing tourists and shoppers from the country into an area full of cultural attractions, businesses, shops, theatres, etc. The “hop-on, hop-off” sightseeing buses use these routes also.
The complete closure of College Green to buses would bring the city to a standstill, with increased levels of pollution along the quays and other streets, longer travel times for already hard-pressed commuters, and a further limit to access for people with mobility issues.
The current ban on private cars in this area has worked well for public transport, but the recent Luas works have shown how quickly the area becomes massively congested when access to College Green is restricted.
Between Macken Street bridge and Fr Matthew bridge there are six other bridges, only four of which carry traffic, and only one of which (O’Connell Bridge) is large enough to manage significant traffic flow.
Dublin Castle/Temple Bar/Trinity combine to form a significant barrier through which College Green, D’Olier, and Westmoreland streets provide the only “pass” for effective traffic movement.
It seems that Dublin City Council is reacting to the previous underprovision of cycle paths by overcompensating and bringing all motorised traffic in our already congested city centre to a complete stop!
Far more people travel by bus than by Luas or bicycle, yet it seems these are the only two forms of transport favoured by the council.
These changes are unnecessary and will have a detrimental effect on what is currently a well-functioning bus service. It is becoming almost impossible to travel across the city as it is. City-centre businesses are suffering.
Síle Uí Laighin,
Baile Átha Cliath 3.
The plans for College Green will be available for public consultation until May 24.
Pics: Dublin City Council