#VC19: Car industry cannot be allowed to paint its vision of the future city, conference told

— Dublin told to “get its act together” on the provision of cycling.

Velo-city — the international cycling conference being hosted in Dublin — was officially opened this morning by transport minister Shane Ross and Cllr Mary Fitzpatrick, standing in for the Lord Mayor.

Cllr Mary Fitzpatrick said that the Dublin was a “compact city” which was ideal for cycling and welcomed attendies to Dublin.

Minister Ross said that just like after Dublin hosted the conference hosted in 2005 he hopes the conference pushes cycling forward. He said that hosting the previous conference opened people’s eyes to the potential of cycling and “informed our thinking on developing new policies”.

He told delegates the numbers of people cycling had increased but that there was “plenty room for movement”. Minister Ross said: “First and foremost we have not built enough of the segregated cycling infrastructure.”

He added that he is soon to launch a new public consultation on public and active transport.

Christophe Najdovski, president of European Cyclists Federation who is also the Deputy Mayor of Paris.  “We have to make cycling for everybody” including woman, older people and children. He said that the car industry cannot be allowed to paint its version of the future of mobility and people who wanted to promote cycling had to take on “powerful lobbies”.

He joked that most of the delegates took flights to get to Dublin but said that cycling was one of the best tools cities had for climate action.

He announced that the City of Ljubljana will be hosting the next Velo-city conference in 2020.

Philippe Crist, an advisory on innovation and foresight for the International Transport Forum, said that artist impression graphics in Google image searches of the city of the future shows space dominated by cars gendered male and showed few older people, but that this was a similar vision of the future of the past — showing a slide of flying cars.

He said that he had to scroll down the page a long way to find a different vision — Dutch cycling. He said cities are active, frictious and social, adding: “We must move — that we are built to do so should surprise nobody”.

“We welcomed the car into the city” said Crist and they nearly had a monopoly and warned that we could be about to give self-driving cars a new monopoly. He said that if self-driving cars cannot fully detect cyclists and pedestrians, they are not yet ready to be licensed on streets.

Amanda Ngabirano, a lecturer at the Makerere University said the city of the future should not be wild for people and should allow older people the same freedom that younger people have.

Green Party leader Eamon Ryan, tweeted from the floor of the conference conference hall: “Velo-city 2019 is in Dublin this week. It’s the biggest & best international conference on how we can make cycling cities. Lord knows we need that knowledge. I’d the usual horrors cycling on Beaver Road, Anglesea Road & Macken Street to get here.”

https://twitter.com/KlausBondam/status/1143437214833094657?s=20

 

I am editor of IrishCycle.com and have reported on and commented on cycling in Ireland for over a decade. My background is in journalism -- I have a BA in Journalism from DCU and HDip in Print Journalism from BCFE. I wrote about cycling for national newspapers, and then started CyclingInDublin.com for overflow stories. Later the website was re-branded to reflect a more national focus.

3 Comments

  1. Shane Ross said that he is soon to launch a new public consultation on public and active transport.

    Soon…..
    Consultation….

    FOR THE LOVE OF FUCK, yet more bullshit from Ross. We all know what works and what doesn’t.

    Works: A network of safe segregated cycle routes.

    Doesn’t work:
    RSA campaigns to get people to wear HiViz and share ‘responsibility’.
    RSA campaigns to get people to wear plastic hats.
    Painted lines on the ground.
    Giving in to vested bodies in the car industry when it comes to building essential infrastructure such as the Liffey Cycle Route.
    Having the AA be hosted by the national broadcaster which gives them the aura of officialdom.
    A gobshite as minister for transport.
    Planners that prioritize cars over people.
    A police force that have flatly failed the citizens of this country by simply not upholding the law in an impartial manner.
    No traffic wardens.
    Seemingly zero consequences for illegally blocking cycle-lanes and footpaths.
    A police force that blocks people on twitter for making them aware of illegal activity.

  2. I did a double-take/jaw-drop today at VC19 when I spotted there amongst the exhibitors an RSA stand with a pile of high-viz vests for handing out.

  3. Stan
    That is so grim. I guess it does give the delegates some idea of the misplaced priorities here though.

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