Ghent Diverted Massive Through-Traffic - Dublin Can Too

The guy with the diagrams in the pic above is Tim from the City of Ghent administration. He’s holding a before + after diagram of motor vehicle circulation round the city.

Our crew attended the big cycling conference in Ghent recently, and attended a tour run by Tim and colleagues. He detailed how the city implemented a major traffic circulation plan in 2015. As in the studies carried out as a basis for Dublin’s current City Centre Transport Plan, they’d found that a massive 50% of car trips were going through the city centre without stopping, and there was an opportunity to reduce traffic and make a greener, healthier city.

Tim’s diagrams show how motor traffic could – before 2015 – go from the outer F40 ring road right to – and all round – the city. Since then though, from any point in the ring road, you’re unable to navigate fully round the inner city by car. The city’s divided into six ‘segments’ and you only have access to one of these from the outer ring. So it was a more radical change than Dublin’s Plan, which mildly discourages through-traffic in a central core area through turn bans and bus gates.

Some facts: Ghent’s circulation plan was…

  • Bounded by the R40 peripheral road (like our North and South Circulars)
  • Initiated over a weekend in 2017
  • 80 streets changed direction over a weekend; 2,500 signs were changed
  • Through traffic was stopped
  • Cameras log registration plates of cars and fine those not permitted (photo above)
  • €58 fine - not a congestion fee
  • Exemptions for residents, loading, taxis
  • Speed reduction to 30km/h and parking plan had been introduced 2015/ 2017

Results of Ghent’s circulation plan…

  • Cycling mode share increased- was 30% in 2015; 35% in 2018
  • Pedestrian area doubled to 50 Hectares
  • Car sharing is now ‘booming’
  • Car ownership dropping
  • Bikes banned in some pedestrian areas at some times (photo above shows the signage)

Traffic, tram and bus monitoring was carried out 6 months before and 6 months after implementation, and is repeated every 3 years accompanied by transport surveys and user diaries. We can quote even more facts + figures but the most striking, amazing thing about experiencing the Plan is how quiet and safe it felt walking round the streets inside the cordon. It’s just a wonderful experience. The best argument for our strong support for the Dublin City Centre Transport Plan.

News Item

Saturday, 6 July 2024 - 6:00pm

Help us do more for cycling in Dublin by becoming a member!