What’s the single largest issue for sustainable transport in Ireland?

COMMENT & ANALYSIS: The single largest issue regarding sustainable transport in Ireland is that there’s rarely any sense of urgency on acting — it’s too widely accepted as the norm.

I don’t have all the answers but the lack of urgency needs to stop — from the largest project like Dart and Metro to things like bollards on cycle lanes or modal filters to stop rat-running or even the refusal to use zebra crossings.

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Even the non-controversial sections of the Royal Canal Greenway in Dublin between North Strand Road and Ashtown, which was approved by councillors in 2015, is still not under construction. The project had no notable objections, no court legal challenges and not even any notable objections from councillors. Six years after approval, it’s still hitting one problem after another.

There’s a lot of vested interest in stopping quicker progress — some motivated by money (they see a lower priority for cars as a threat to their business), others because they want an easy life, and others because they think they know better than countries that already solved issues we have.

Most of these people claim to support change when they are in no hurry to see it happen or even actively block change or slow it.

The excuse for delay after delay on everything is a killer, people lose the will to keep pushing for change. Campaigners for different modes of sustainable transport keep mentioning how burnout or consultation fatigue is real.

More funding and staffing for sustainable transport promised by the Government will help with delays. So, will planned legal changes.

But what will help with the wider issues? How can the system be changed to make it clear that delay after delay isn’t ok?

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