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Is there anyone in authority to call a halt to the insanity of the new city-wide 30km/h (19 mph) limit to be fully rolled out by 2018? It is hard to believe anyone who has ever driven a car thought this was a reasonable measure. Why not 10mph? Why not 5 mph? How about we all just walk? Or maybe just stay at home? Or maybe in bed?

John O’Donovan,
Dublin 6.

30km/h speed limit for Dublin (Irish Times)

Related: Speed limits to be reduced to 30km/h across Dublin (Irish Times)

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62 thoughts on “Slow Clap

  1. Waddy Dilson

    I’m assuming the headline is a sarcastic slow clap as the point of all of these restrictive traffic rules is to encourage car users to leave their cars at home.
    I’d go a step further and introduce the london style charge for entering the city in your car.

    1. AssPants

      Really…. you honestly believe a levy on cars entering the city is justified, You know if we did leave our cars at home then Dublin Bus, Bus Eireann, Transdev and all the remaing transport operators would cry loudly as they cannot cope with the current demand on their services.

      Does “Waddy Dilson” really believe more tax on the self sufficient motorist is warranted? Given the multiples of revenue currently generated from the motorist; not to mention the mountains of “money grabs” this and the previous government have and are planning on rolling out against those of us with a regular income.

      Sounds like “Waddy Dilson” is a cyclist.

      1. Vote Rep #1

        It wouldn’t be a tax on motorists. It would be a tax on entering the city centre in a car.

        1. Jesus Wept

          Two tier road access.The haves have freedom of the city.The have nots use the bus.

      2. Sham Bob

        The self sufficient motorist – driving around on a patch of gravel they bring with them everywhere, along with a mobile petrol pump.

      3. fmong

        looks like “Waddy Dilson” is getting his user name slagged off by someone called “Asspants”, harsh.. way harsh…

      4. neil

        The transport operators would be delighted with the huge growth in demand, and decrease in delays due to traffic.

        1. Waddy Dilson

          Imagine the morning commute without having to put up with the idiots on the road, it would be safer for the bike users however annoying they may be.
          It’s a great idea.
          I’m only just stopping short of an all out ban on cars within the city because transport services may not be sufficient for everything people require during the day.
          The aim of this government and every previous government in the past 15 years has been to reduce private traffic on city roads.

  2. manolo

    great idea, pity it is only inside the canals. selfish drivers won’t like it though.

  3. Yeah, Ok

    As a driver, the 30km speed limit is reaaaalllly irritating.
    As a cyclist, pedestrian, and citizen who has to live in Dublin, this potentially beautiful city that is eminently walkable from one end to the next, I fully support the limit. This is not in spite of the fact that it’s irritating to drive around the place at that limit, but because it is.
    While we’re at it, let’s actually look seriously at a congestion charge – we have a ready-made cordon between the canals for it. Let’s pedestrianize College Green properly, by making the bloody taxis F off out of there too. Let’s ignore the parish pump politics of the “down the country” folk and push through DART Underground, Metro North and all the other public transport solutions that are needed now and will be the ruin of the city in future if they’re not done.
    I say all this as a Donegal culchie, from that place with no trains, no motorways, no anything. Let’s get our priorities straight here.

    1. Wayne.F

      Have you ever tried communing from say Swords to Hardcourt street on crutches, using only public transport, or say Crumlin to the Drumcondra? Now imagine doing it in a wheelchair, or being elderly and frail. Sadly public transport routes in the city are not yet to the standard where pedestrianizing College Green is viable. Unlike the chicken and the Egg this debate is easy, public transport must be sufficent before you remove the other options.

      1. fmong

        ” Now imagine doing it in a wheelchair, or being elderly and frail.”

        Wayne F you poor B*stard… you have my deepest sympathies

      2. topsy

        The 41 from Swords Manor to town via airport some times does not turn up. It’s a waste of time contacting Dublin Bus to complain.

      3. Yeah, Ok

        I agree public transport isn’t up to scratch, which is why we need to stop every rural winkyhead sticking his oar in to stop public transport improvements that will serve 200,000 people a day just because fupping Thurles needs a new train station or a football pitch in rural Donegal hasn’t got a grant in 15 years. Dublin’s public transport will NEVER reach a modern city standard as long as some twit from Kilgarvan or Ballygobackwards can whinge until it’s shelved. Una Mullally’s minister for Dublin idea was one of the fairly rare things I agree with her on.
        As for College Green, I can’t see what the problem is with that, most of the traffic has been rerouted already so let’s push on.

      4. Vote Rep #1

        Now imagine doing it blindfolded, wearing big red earphones and wearing a tartan tweed suit.

      5. sqoid

        Why would a trip from Swords to Harcourt St or a trip from Crumlin to Drumcondra necessitate driving through College Green?

        You’re right though that Public transport doesn’t serve the impaired equally, but neither a 30kmh zone or pedestrianized areas make this any worse.
        FYI the example of pushing a buggy usually rings stronger than an appeal to the consideration of wheelchair users. It takes less of a leap for some people to empathise with a parent than a sick or old person

        1. Wayne.F

          They would require passage via, the city and the congestion charge and pedestrianization of college green impact that. Without the college green artery you push trafffic either the the Samuel Beckett, and East link, or to O’Donnovan Rossa and Father Matthew bridge, these increased traffic volumes on small volume routes are not sustainable. Now using the example above with public transport. One bus to the city, exit bus to tram, tram between two points, and a second bus.

    2. Clampers Outside!

      ” Let’s ignore the parish pump politics of the “down the country” folk and push through DART Underground, Metro North”

      Eh? Down the what now? Who?

  4. Jess

    How about we all just crawl back up our mother and never get born!

    *throws food at wall and goes to listen to The Cure*

  5. Jay

    Agree with ‘Yeah Ok’: as a driver, the 30km speed limit is irritating. But as a pedestrian in the city, I’m all for it. More focus on pedestrians in the city, the better.

    But if they put a congestion charge for driving into the city, then there should be an un-taxed/un-tolled orbital route around the city, so the M50 would need to have its toll removed.

  6. The Real Jane

    The letters to the editor must be a depressing read if this makes the cut.

    Whither the ‘is this the first daffodil this spring’ letters of yesteryear? At least they weren’t written in the style of a 19 year old estate agent with a souped up fiesta to let roar through Westmoreland St.

  7. Tish Mahorey

    Motorists are regularly driving through red lights.

    Policing of traffic is appalling. I regularly see two traffic cars parked outside Pearse street station DURING rush hours.

  8. AssPants

    I see the ransom holding cyclist are alive and well on this thread.

    As a motorist, I loath the cycling community for the continuous and deliberate flouting of the bye laws and statutory laws for road users. If the motoring community used the roads with the same regard as the cycling community it would be like trying to change lanes on an Indian urban road.

    The cyclists may sit up there on their saddles and look down upon all those who chose alternative transport. But don’t forget you only have the roads due to the masses of taxes and levies generated by the motorist.

    Eaten bread is soon forgotten

    Oh and one more thing, those of you who think your very high and mighty with your “eco friendly bike”; my fleet and yes fleet, of vehicles are all more than 10 years old and second hand. That is recycling; 90% carbon free vehicle (the remaining 10% is that of the burnt petrol).

      1. AssPants

        You’re all lovely people.

        I love these threads…. people seem to think they know you based upon a few sentences. String a few words together and people are queuing to engage with you.

        Love you guys :) :) :)

        1. pedeyw

          “people seem to think they know you based upon a few sentences.” Says the guy who just generalised every cyclist on the road.

    1. Sullery

      It’s ok AssPants, just because we cyclists are better than you doesn’t mean we don’t love you and want to help you <3

    2. pedeyw

      As a cyclist, I don’t loathe all motorists. Just the selfish ones who disregard cycle lanes, beep at me for having the gall to try to turn right from a cycle lane at a junction (even though I always signal), pull out in front of me, overtake me then pull in right in front of me, stick their nose out into cycle lanes forcing me into the main traffic etc.

  9. Yeah, Ok

    You loath (sic) the cycling community. Good for you.
    As a cyclist and driver, it’s patently obvious that cars are the worst offenders on the roads. Just today a taxi clipped my wing mirror while mounting the pavement to skip a lane, I had to avoid being hit at 3 separate junctions by that special type of amber gambler who continues to gamble a solid 3 seconds after the amber has become red, I saw a good 5-10% of drivers on their phone or texting, every stretch of cycle lane had about 3 cars in it per 100m, and most double yellow lines and pavements provided lots of people with handy spots to park.
    In the interest of fairness, one lady cyclist skipped a red light through a green man at an empty junction, and one cyclist turned left on a red light. Bloody cyclists.

  10. AssPants


    “If the motoring community used the roads with the same regard as the cycling community it would be like trying to change lanes on an Indian urban road.”

    Those who are 100% compliant with the road laws (and with a genuinely clear conscious) through the first stone!

  11. AssPants

    yeah I know… I gave up… Actually went back to work; thankfully there isn’t much spelling in my occupation.

  12. Joe835

    I walk, cycle and drive in the city Monday to Friday, probably in equal enough portions, so I can see all sides in this debate. I proceed on all three modes of transport on the same basis; assume NO-ONE can see you.

    As a pedestrian, cyclists are often as big a threat to me as motorists, possibly bigger. Cyclists that don’t stop for lights (a smaller number than 2 years ago, by my estimation) won’t stop for pedestrians and they’re a bigger danger to a pedestrian than they are to a car. We need wider footpaths in the stretch from College Green to the bottom of O’Connell Street and diagonal crossings to reduce pinch points.

    As a cyclist, I find pedestrians wandering out in front of me incredibly-irritating, since any loss of momentum is frustrating. I think the city needs more contra-flow cycle lanes or, better yet, an understanding that cyclists are permitted to go the opposite way down one-way streets. Motorists need to acknowledge cyclists as road users and that they are as entitled to proceed up the middle of a street, away from the incredibly-hazardous area between the kerb and buses, as any motorist.

    As a motorist, we just need more cop-on. A huge proportion of queuing traffic is caused by other motorists not keeping up with traffic, an even bigger proportion is caused by simple mistakes/ignorance with junction boxes and traffic being blocked for no reason than a single idiot’s blissful indifference. Walking to and from your car should be encouraged more; would it be that radical to allow motorists park and walk, say, 3km from the city centre without pay & display on every suburban road?

    But speed? Speed barely enters the conversation, since Dublin’s roads are so safe. 17 people died on our roads last year. Seventeen. Now that’s devastating to the families, friends and loved ones of those people but (and I know this is no comfort to those people) that figure is actually quite low.

    There are 1.27m people in all of Co. Dublin, by far the biggest population in Ireland. So 17 deaths works out at 1.38 road deaths per 100,000 inhabitants – almost a third of the figure for all of Ireland. Dublin’s roads are safer than Japan, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Switzerland, the Netherlands – in fact they’re so low that there’s no country I could even compare Dublin to since Monaco is the lowest at 1.9 deaths per 100,000.

    A 30km/h limit is ludicrous, laughable and unworkable. More importantly, it would make a mockery of all speed limits. But most importantly – it is clearly unnecessary. If the rest of Ireland was as safe as Dublin, road deaths would have dropped from 165 to just 63 – again, tragic for all concerned, but much safer than today.

    If that were the case, who exactly would be pressing for the speed limit to be reduced to 30km/h? And why?

    1. Yeah, Ok

      They’re all valid points, but to me the limit is not about safety, it’s about congestion. If there were 0 deaths or injuries on Dublin’s roads it would still be a nightmare to drive around. The 30km limit is to annoy people so much that they stop using their car. If the alternative is unsuitable or doesn’t exist, they can still drive, but the downside of that is dealing with speed limits and horrendous traffic. I’m sure there are figures for the reasons people use their car and I’d bet a huge percentage of the journeys could be just as easily done by some other method.
      I often take my car for a 5 minute journey for no other reason except laziness. If it was easier to walk or cycle I would. To put that a different way; if it was harder to drive, I wouldn’t. That’s the point.

  13. Turgenev

    As I understand it, the point of a 30kph speed limit is that this will actually make the car traffic flow better – rather than speeding from one traffic light to another and then sitting there grinding their gears, cars will flow evenly through the city. That was the theory originally propounded, anyway.

    As for public transport, Dublin must be the only modern city in the world without a subway.

    As for the need of the person on crutches, it’s true, but not necessarily a basis for the whole transport plan. I no longer drive, except in exceptional circumstances, when I can always hire a car. A bicycle or a bus, train or tram is usually faster and easier. Certainly, there are people who need to drive, either because they are disabled or because they have business in several discrete places far from each other – but I very much doubt that they represent the majority of the single-occupant cars traversing the city.

    1. pedeyw

      I wonder whether there is a need for a subway system, though. Dublin city centre is relatively small both in size and population density and the main rail routes (not Luas) don’t interfere with traffic really.

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