‘Cyclists dismount’ signs on a new east-west walking and cycling link between Grangegorman Lower and the core of Dublin city centre have been defended by the Grangegorman Development Agency as it continues to flout sustainable transport related planning conditions for the campus.
The designers of the Grangegorman campus — which houses Dublin Institute of Technology and HSE facilities — opted for shared walking and cycling links the city centre campus, but since the site part-opened the authority has also implemented restrictive opening hours forcing people in the area into long and unsafe detours, put a restrictive barrier on the only western access point where cycling is allowed and flouted the planning condition the east-west access would be open before students were on site.
One gate on the southern half of Grangegorman Lower which was shown in the planning scheme as for walking and cycling seems to be permanently closed despite construction being finished inside that gate for some time.
The An Bord Pleanála imposed conditions Grangegorman Development Agency to have the east-west access before students are on site, made no allowance for limited time access and planners told them that walking and cycling access points have the same statue as other “gateway” access points.
The way cycling is treated on the site contrasts to Dutch universities where dedicated cycle paths are provided across campuses and strongly contrasts with the redevelopment of Utrecht Centraal Station where walking and cycle routes were maintained around a far larger construction project.
After a reader Anne sent us images of the ‘cyclists dismount’ signs, IrishCycle.com sent questions to the Grangegorman Development Agency which have so-far gone unanswered, but the authority posted on Facebook shortly afterwards saying there was “confusion” over the cyclist dismount signs.
“There appears to be some confusion around the new link to Constitution Hill. The link is for pedestrians and cyclists, as is the whole Grangegorman quarter. The ‘cyclist dismount’ signs refer only to the entrances at either end. where there are blind corners,” the Grangegorman Development Agency said on Facebook.
“The GDA have intentionally opened the new link on a restricted basis to allow us to see how it operates and to see if any issues arise. It is our intention and goal to expand the opening hours as soon as we can and will hopefully be able to provide a timetable for this soon.”
It added: “We would also like to re-iterate that this link is a temporary one until the new plaza at Broadstone is completed by Transport Infrastructure Ireland. This is due to happen next year. Once complete it will effectively become the main entrance to Grangegorman from the city. In fact the sign informing people that they are entering Grangegorman is already in place on the bridge under which people will walk to come into the quarter.”
The authority also posted this image showing the new route:
Seems like nonsense. Or are we to assume that dogs are only to be kept on leads near the entrance too?
Is there a valet service for when bicycles are *not* securely locked?
Why would you build blind corners into entrances and exits?
The final quote is telling
“We would also like to re-iterate that this link is a temporary one until the new plaza at Broadstone is completed by Transport Infrastructure Ireland. This is due to happen next year. Once complete it will effectively become the main entrance to Grangegorman from the city. In fact the sign informing people that they are entering Grangegorman is already in place on the bridge under which people will *walk* to come into the quarter.”
Crazy not having cycle tracks in and through the campus. They should be encouraging people on bikes, not hindering them.
Is this practice consistent with the planning permission? I would be worried if “accessibility, integration and permeability” are interpreted to only mean walking. We were hearing the same noises in relation to College Green. It seems to me there needs to be explicit provision for cycling if we are to get any change.
Separate walkways and cycleways make sense, so each has their own space. My experience when I have to dismount my bike is that I have to maneuver around various pedestrians, apologising because of the space I’m taking up. Better for all to keep apart.
I used to work at Utrecht University. On the general campus there was also a high-school and a large hospital. Thousands and thousands of people commuted into and across the campus every day. Thousands of people also walked and took the bus. There were never any problems that I saw because ….. wait for it…… they had designed the spaces to accommodate people on bikes. Segregated safe bike lanes all over the place. No matter where you were going, whether on-campus or inwards into the city, or even outwards to one of the peripheral towns, you knew you could get there on a safe segregated cycle-lane.
Citizen Wolf puts his finger on a big problem with cycle facilities in Ireland which is that we never know if they are any good or significantly worse than just staying on the road. The number of times I’ve left the road to get on a cycle lane only to find that it dead ends 100m down the road at a traffic light or that it veers away from the route I want to take with no exit point or that I have to yield to every side road and driveway has made me reluctant to bother with cycle lanes at all.
I see the new cycle and walking route at knocklyon which I understood would be divided between the two groups is now to be mixed use and also see that the new super wide paths at the realigned roads between adamstown and grange castle are now marked for mixed use. The designation of this latter route as mixed is incomprehensible seeing as there is plenty room on the path at both sides of the road. This contrasts with the path and cycleways on the adjacent outer ring road where there is a hedge between the two.
Can anyone explain if a change in policy has occurred and if so why. It can’t be expense , it only needs a white line. So many recent routes that could be great spoiled by gates (adamstown-inchicore) and several others designated as shared routes.