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Most people recommend Dublin for visit - but only a third feel safe there at night

Findings from Your Dublin, Your Voice survey shows the capital is considered a very vibrant place – but the public have some interesting suggestions to make it even better…

The Liffey Boardwalk
The Liffey Boardwalk
Image: Eamonn Farrell/Photocall Ireland

PEOPLE COMING TO Dublin love to shop on Grafton Street, go to city centre parks and use the bus. That’s according to the results of the second Your Dublin Your Voice survey, carried out for Dublin City Council.

The results of the first comprehensive survey in the series were published this time last year. At that time, the survey focused on the overall experience of living in or visiting Dublin. It also generated a plethora of interesting ideas from survey respondents on how the city could be improved.

This new survey – which was carried out last June July – asked almost 2,000 people from every county in Ireland on their views on the shopping and social scene in Dublin.

Here are some of the key findings:

  • 93 per cent would recommend Dublin as a place to visit
  • 81 per cent say that the city centre is a vibrant place
  • 87 per cent say that Dublin has a good range of high quality restaurants
  • 81 per cent consider access to Irish and local brands to be important to them
  • 81 per cent enjoy socialising in Dublin
  • 77 per cent of people feel safe in the city in daylight hours
  • Only 35 per cent feel safe in the city when night falls
  • 66 per cent of those in the city go to the pub once a month or more
  • 74 per cent say they dine out once or more per month
  • 81 per cent of under-45s in Dublin prefer city centre pubs to suburban pubs
  • Those aged 46 and over preferred, on majority, the suburban pub to a city centre one
  • Grafton Street is the “most appealing” destination for shoppers; Henry Street comes second; Dundrum comes third; Rathmines and Ranelagh come fourth and Temple Bar comes fifth.
  • Our favourite mode of public transport into the city centre is the bus (34 per cent). One in five like to go to the city centre by car.
  • Only 27 per cent of people surveyed went to museums or galleries in the city on a regular monthly basis
  • Eating out and shopping are the two favourite activities in the city centre
  • Walking/jogging and going to the park are the two favourite activities in the suburbs

(via Your Dublin Your Voice/ Dublincity.ie)

What do people want to see more of in the city centre? Cheaper or free parking (18 per cent); better or cheaper public transport (11 per cent); improvements to safety (13 per cent); better range of small, local and Irish shops in the centre (11 per cent).

Suggestions to make this happen included…

  • getting a discount on parking if you have a receipt from a shop or restaurant in the area
  • having some high-profile police points in the centre as they do in Tokyo
  • putting on a free bus link between Henry Street and Grafton Street that runs every 15 minutes
  • enable the opening of more Irish-owned shops to cut down on the “clone”-like feel of many Irish main streets
  • making the centre more pedestrian-friendly – something that doesn’t necessarily mean pedestrianising the whole area
  • getting more parent and child toilet facilities in place
  • increasing public areas for “gathering and leisure like in Paris and Berlin… A city for its people rather than for profit and big business”
  • putting pop-up shops into vacant units
  • setting up a bag-minding service as is temporarily organised in the Christmas period
  • getting shops to “stop the fake sales” and synchronise their sales so that people would feel they were a genuine event
  • getting together a proper central events guide which should be as simple and comprehensive as the volunteer-run Dublin Event Guide

The report found:

Some key messages coming from respondents was their love of what the city centre has to  offer beyond the shopping experience. They talked about the complete package that is Dublin which included the parks, museums, galleries, cafes, pubs and most importantly the people.

In relation to the suburbs there were many comments on how lucky we are as a city to have such fantastic natural amenities at our doorstep such as the mountains and the sea and that we need to learn to better appreciate this.

There is an interesting table in the report that shows other areas outside the city centre that people mentioned as appealing conclaves to socialise and shop. “The following table highlights the useful concept of Dublin as a city of villages”:

(via Your Dublin Your Voice/ Dublincity.ie)

A third survey will be carried out soon – this one will focus on “Digital Dublin” and there are a number of prizes, including an iPad3, in a draw for those who sign up to and complete the survey. You can register for it here.

The surveys are an initiative of all four Dublin councils – Dublin City, South Dublin County, Fingal County and Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County.

Read the full results of the second report for Your Dublin, Your Voice (Shopping and Socialising section)>

The best thing about Dublin? The people. The worst? Drink and drugs>


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