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NTA launches fresh round of public consultation on BusConnects corridors

Cycling campaigners say they have have “serious concerns” about the designs being proposed for major traffic junctions.
Nov 4th 2020, 1:49 PM 8,606 6

THE NATIONAL TRANSPORT Authority (NTA) has launched a third round of public consultation on the 16 core bus corridors in the BusConnects programme.

The projects will see 230km of priority bus routes and 200km of cycle lanes rolled out on key access routes in Dublin. The consultation period opened today and will run until 16 December.

The fresh round of public consultation focuses on the route options for all 16 corridors. 

When the deadline passes the NTA will review the submissions and the final transport and environmental impact assessments to be completed in the coming months.

The formal planning application is due to be submitted to An Bord Pleanála in March 2021. Construction is set to get under way in 2022 and will be carried out on a phased basis.

The first round of public consultation took place during late 2018 and early 2019 and attracted 13,000 submissions. The second round kicked off in March this year but was interrupted by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Minister for the Environment, Climate, Communications and Transport, Eamon Ryan said the government is committed to a “fundamental change” in the nature of Dublin’s transport system which will encourage sustainable modes of travel such as cycling, walking, and public transport.

“By improving our city’s transport system and ensuring that public transport, walking and cycling options are prioritised, we can encourage more and more people to make the switch to sustainable transport modes,” the Green Party leader said.

“The development of this project will also support the delivery of an efficient, low carbon and climate resilient public transport service. In moving more people from their car and onto the bus or on their bike, BusConnects can help to achieve Ireland’s carbon reduction targets as set out in the Programme for Government,” Ryan added.

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Cyclists’ concerns

The Dublin Cycling Campaign said it has “serious concerns” about the designs being proposed for major traffic junctions as part of the BusConnects project.

The group said that the NTA’s junction layout is unproven and ignores international best practice. It raised specific concerns about cyclists not being given clear protection from left-turning vehicles.

“Ireland is several decades behind the likes of Denmark and the Netherlands in terms of cycling infrastructure and we should be looking to those countries for inspiration,” Kevin Baker, Dublin Cycling Campaign Chairperson, said.

“We don’t need to reinvent the wheel instead of following proven international standards,” Baker added.

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