Dublin City Council today proposed to block public traffic from selected roads in the city centre by 2017.
A €150 million (£109m) National Transport Authority investment may create public transport, cycling and pedestrian only links along North and South Quays and at College Green plus pedestrianisation of Suffolk Street and St. Stephen’s Green North.
In the NTA’s ‘Dublin City Centre Transport Study’, published today, they could target crossing the canals for 55% for public transport, 15% for cycling, 10% for walking and 20% for private car use”.
The NTA are welcoming views from the public, and they can make comments on the consultation until July 16 via www.dublincity.ie/TransportStudy.
“Traffic congestion levels in Dublin are already rising, and, with an additional 42,000 morning-peak journeys into the City Centre anticipated by 2023, plans need to be put in place now to meet the Development Plan targets and to ensure that the capital city continues to function efficiently into the future,” they say.
“In addition, the construction and operation of Luas Cross City will require a significant reconfiguration of current traffic arrangements.”
The study specifically proposes extending the current ‘bus gate’ at College Green to exclude cars, vans and taxis on a 24-hour basis, restricting the street permanently to Luas, buses, cyclists and pedestrians and developing a much-enhanced civic space in front of Trinity College.
On the North and South Quays, Bachelors’ Walk would be reconfigured as a public transport / cycling / walking only corridor, between its junctions with Jervis Street and O’Connell Street. Across the river, this arrangement would be mirrored, either on Aston Quay, Burgh Quay or George’s Quay – with this decision to be made following a more detailed analysis. General through-traffic would be re-routed around the city’s central area – freeing up road-space in this currently congested part of the city.
As a result of the new traffic restrictions on College Green, Westmoreland Street too would cease to be a through route for car traffic, and can therefore be reconfigured to provide a high quality pedestrian environment, linking the city centre’s two major retail/leisure destinations – O’Connell Street/Henry Street and the Grafton Street Quarter – with wider paths, priority pedestrian crossing onto O’Connell Bridge, BRT and Luas interchange and enhanced cycling facilities.
D’Olier Street would also benefit directly from car-traffic realignments in the city centre. A new central median to accommodate additional bus stops, segregated cycle lanes and ready access to the DART at Tara Street would make this street a key interchange location in the city.
Developing Luas Cross City has opened up the opportunity to pedestrianise Suffolk Street, complementing the Grafton Street commercial area. And a new civic space can be created on St Stephen’s Green North between the Dawson Street and Grafton Street junctions, and extending southwards onto St. Stephen’s Green West.