— In doubt: City development plan objective to “provide a continuous cycleway connecting the Phoenix Park and Heuston Station to the proposed S2S route along the city’s quays” by 2017
Plans to make Dublin’s quays safer and more accessible for walking and cycling have been delayed until at least late 2017, according to the National Transport Authority.
The Irish Times reported yesterday that the head of the authority, Gerry Murphy, told the Oireachtas Committee on Transport and Communications that the project would not start until after Luas Cross City works are due to finish in October 2014.
Public consultation is, however, expected to proceed later this year. Details of the plan are reported to be presented to councilors in the coming weeks.
As IrishCycle.com reported in January, it had been thought that construction could start on the quays as early as next year and the current Dublin City Development plan says it is an objective of Dublin City Council to “provide a continuous cycleway connecting the Phoenix Park and Heuston Station to the proposed S2S route along the city’s quays” within the lifetime of the development plan, which runs up to 2017.
The delay will leave DublinBikes users and other cycling commuters and tourists, traveling between the Heuston Station area and the city centre core, exposed to some of the worst cycling conditions within Dublin’s canals, including the south quays (pictured above). DublinBikes stations are in place at Heuston and on Parkgate Street and are due to open next month at the latest.
After stakeholder consultation on the quays project was held at the start of this year, Richard Guiney, CEO of the Dublin City Business Improvement District, tweeted: “NTA & @DubCityCouncil plan for new cycle route from Heuston St to The Point is a well structured plan that will work for all.” Last week he added:
North Quays cycle & traffic lanes can both be accommodated if board walk is extended as agreed by NTA/DCC’s consultants in January.
— Richard Guiney (@GuineyR) June 21, 2014
The Irish Times, again, claimed yesterday that the project is a “Plan by Dublin chief executive Owen Keegan”, however, work on the project predates Keegan’s appointment as city manager by over three years. Following a report by the Times, the cycle route has been widely reported by many media outlets as something Keegan has dreamed up of within only months of being appointed.
The plan is in keeping with the current Dublin City Development, approved in 2010, and the City Centre Public Realm Strategy – both of which were approved by councilors. Designs should also include improvements for people walking or using wheelchairs along the Liffey.