Cycle path on Dublin’s quays delayed after NTA took over due to delays

A segregated cycle route on Dublin’s quays — which is in pre-planning for nearly 7 years — is delayed again because the National Transport Authority said that it wants to be as thorough as it can possibly be before a definitive decision is made.

The authority took the route choice decision from the council because of continuous delays, but now the report from the NTA’s consultants, which was due in April, is delayed. A “preliminary assessment” should be ready the end of June but the report won’t be made public until the third quarter of the year.

Cllr Ciaran Cuffe (Green Party), chairman of the city’s transport committee, said: “I’m disappointed by the delay, and the manner in which the NTA cut local elected representatives out of the loop at this stage of the decision-making process. The Liffey Cycle Route has been delayed by local concerns and some scare-mongering, but I have no doubt that a decent compromise for the route can be found that will meet with public approval.”

Cllr Paul Hand (independent) said: “I am extremely disappointed with the continuous delays with the Liffey Cycle Route and would ask that the NTA come up with a plan which is safe for cyclists and one which promotes a modal shift to more sustainable transport modes.”

He said the route was “hugely important” in terms of both safety and getting more people cycling.

“I represent Chapelizod on the Council and many of the residents that cycle in to work there are wary due to the lack of safe cycling infrastructure. Unfortunately a ghost bike was erected on Conyngham Road [after a death there last year], a reminder of how dangerous it can be to cycle.

Cllr Hand added: “But that danger is drastically reduced when safe cycling infrastructure is installed and in that regard the Liffey Cycle Route is sorely and urgently needed.”

Kieran Ryan of the Dublin Cycling Campaign said: “The Dublin Cycling Campaign is extremely disappointed with this further delay to the Liffey Cycle Route. We were expecting the NTA’s review of the project to be concluded by April and we do not understand why that deadline has been missed. We have been waiting seven years for the design of the route to be finalised. Meanwhile, thousands of people continue to cycle along Dublin’s Quays everyday without any physical separation from cars, buses and trucks.”

Ryan added: “We will be taking further action in the coming weeks to demonstrate cyclists’ dissatisfaction with the slow rate of progress on the Liffey Cycle Route.”

Dermot O’Gara, a spokesman for the National Transport Authority said: “We want to be as thorough as we can possibly be, at each stage before a definitive decision is made.”

“It is the intention of the NTA to consult with Dublin City Council on the draft report before finalising the report and publishing it,” he said.

Asked who the consultants will be in contact with the to make the choice, the NTA said: “The consultants’ assessment will be guided by the standard requirements of the Public Spending Code / Capital Appraisal Framework.”

The NTA said the consultants have been contracted to:

  • Undertake the role of Designer and Project Supervisor Design Process (PSDP).
  • The undertaking of a review of all options previously identified (by DCC and in response to DCC public consultation) for the Liffey Cycle Route;
  • A review of constraints associated with the project
  • The identification and outline design of any other feasible options for the Liffey cycle Route not already identified, (including feasible combinations of other previous options)
  • The undertaking of a comprehensive options assessment process;
  • The completion of an Options Assessment Report;
  • The development of a concept engineering design for the preferred Project option;
  • Stakeholder consultation in relation to the Project.

9 Comments

  1. Hi Cian, isn’t it a bit late for an April fools joke?

  2. @Wolf — sadly, it’s not a joke. The whole nearly 7 years thing is a bit of a joke in another sense, but the article accurately reflects the progress / lack of progress on the project.

  3. It’s a joke alright. A sick joke in bad taste that’s resulting in the ongoing deaths of people. Remember in Ireland every year thousands die from vehicle-induced air pollution (cardiovascular, respiratory, CNS). And yet more die due to sedentary related illnesses.

    We need to get people out of their cars. It’s a national health emergency that isn’t yet recognized by the vast bulk of people. The Liffey cycle route needs to be designated a transport route of strategic significance and built ASAP.

  4. My original bet was that nothing significant would happen until 2 years after the NTA took the project from DCC. But that will then be followed by all the opposition and challenges that the project was finding when being conducted by DCC anyway. This is like a competition to see who has the biggest swinging d***. Guess what, they are all tiny.

  5. @Stephen McManus
    Precisely, all this has done has set back the project by several years. We’ve been through the process already. It was flawed, but at least it was moving and the necessary battles were being fought. Now we are back to square one. Once a route decision is finally made, we’ll be back to public consultation and Dublin Town will be out to shoot down any outcome that is not to their liking (i.e. not the status quo) by whatever means necessary.
    It makes you wonder why the NTA stepped in in the first place. They surely knew the impact this would have on the project. Almost as if it was knocked back deliberately.

  6. I agree with Citizen Wolfe: “The Liffey cycle route needs to be designated a transport route of strategic significance and built ASAP”.
    The S2S and Dodder Valley greenway both need the same strategic designation. Stop the faffing with ‘consultation’ when status quo stakeholders will gather the muscle to oppose it on grounds of protecting their interests and not advancing the common weal – climate action; reducing GHGs, obese children who can’t cycle to local schools, etc.

  7. As AKA said, it now would seem as if this has been knocked back deliberately to stall the whole project. Would a freedom of information request shed any light on the process/decision behind why the NTA took this step? Were they told to by people in government? Are there political machinations going on in the background?

    Considering how vital this route is to enabling more people to cycle, I think it’s important we find out exactly what the hell is going on in the background in regards to the decision to remove the process away from Dublin City Council. Could Ciaran Cuffe, as head of the transport division for Dub City Council, look into this perhaps?

  8. Clean Air and Safer streets May 1, 2018 at 4:43 pm

    Quality Cycling infra is so cheap compares public transport, Dublin is missing a big opportunity to build cycle infra is massively cheaper than public transport, segregated infra encourages much more cyclists in citys with obvious benefits as and no detriments and is very much part of the solution for clean air, The economy benefits big as Greenways have shown, most shops and business benefit from more cyclists,
    all this and more has been proved in studys over and over and yet politicians refuse to grab onto this no brainer, traffic engineers from Netherlands were hired for Transport for London to design their Cycle Superhighways, vehicle emissions are causing decades earlier deaths of hundreds or thousands every year in Large urban areas like Dublin. There are no arguments AGAINST not building segregated cycle lanes

  9. Also an electric scooter-share revolution is almost certainly coming down the tracks very soon to any city with anything resembling a cycling infrastructure. If we can’t get the government to build infrastructure for cyclists, they will have to pay attention if Bird and the other startups start flooding the city with scooters. They will probably try to ban them, but my guess is that they will become ubiquitous within a few years one way or the other.
    Ironically, this could help cyclists. The focus of drivers ire may shift to scooterists, while the pressure to provide proper infrastructure will only increase. Public Transport usage will rise significantly if the “last mile” problem is actually solved. Watch this space.

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