The COVID-19 pandemic has the potential to radically change the way we distribute road space in Dublin city centre.
With a target to double the number of people who walk, and triple the number who cycle, it looks like we’re going to have road space taken away from motor vehicles and given over to active and sustainable means of transport.
Dublin City Council and the National Transport Authority (NTA) have recently published a Covid Mobility Programme to deal with how transport is going to operate once the mobility restrictions are relaxed and people start commuting to work again.
The main points are:
- With physical distancing requirements, public transport is going to carry only 20% of it’s previous capacity
- There is a target to double the amount of people walking to work, and to triple the number of people cycling to work
- To make room for all the additional people walking and cycling, road space will be taken away from motor vehicles, with an anticipated reduction of 30% of private cars and taxis entering the city centre
Changes are already taking place to widen footpaths to enable pedestrians to distance themselves. And traffic signals across the city have been adjusted to reduce pedestrian wait times – and there will be no need to press the push-button to cross a road between 7am and 7pm.
A new temporary cycle lane has appeared on the North Quays, and bollards have been installed on other cycle routes to try to stop vehicles blocking them.
But it looks like this is just the start, and lots more changes will be taking place over the coming months.
The map below shows all of the different roads in the city centre where changed are being proposed to prioritise walking and cycling.
If you want to see how this might affect your commute, then best to check out the detailed proposed measures by location.
My normal commute to work goes through Rathmines village, and there seems to be a number of measures planned including:
- Enhanced bus priority
- Widened pedestrian areas
- Protected cycle facilities
- Consideration of implementing a bus gate that would block all traffic except buses and bicycles from passing on Rathmines Road Lower