Observations on Draft Rathgar Village Improvement Plan
Dublin Cycling Campaign (DCC) is a voluntary independent group that works to bring about improved conditions for cyclists and greater recognition of the benefits of cycling.
Dublin Cycling Campaign, welcomes any proposed improvements to village quarters in Dublin City, and agrees with the broad thrust of the plan to improve the public realm in Rathgar Village and especially welcomes the “Opportunities for new or improved pedestrian routes/cycle routes and for traffic calming measures “ proposed within the Plan.
We welcome the proposal to review traffic lane widths to provide for cycle lanes and make the area safer for pedestrians as there are a number of places within the Village which are unsafe for both pedestrians and cyclists. To this end we suggest that specific access treatment be considered for all four approaches to the main Rathgar Junction, in order to slow down approaching traffic, and increase cycling and pedestrian safety. We recommend the consideration of a 30kph zone in this area in line with the ongoing Dept of Transport, Tourism & Sport ‘Review of Speed Limits’. A 30 kph zone would emphasise the Village identity and the idea that it is an area to be enjoyed, not a traffic hazard to be negotiated in the shortest possible time.
We welcome the proposal to assess the provision of cycle parking in the village. The current provision of one set of Sheffield style bike stands outside the pharmacy on the junction of Orwell road and Terenure Road East is inadequate. Additional stands are required to encourage people to cycle to the Village and to make cycling more visible. Economic studies worldwide emphasise the regular daily benefits of cyclists and pedestrians using retail outlets more than cars. We attach 2 examples of studies of this nature for information.
We have reservations about the proposal to consider the feasibility of a roundabout at the Highfield Road / Christ Church junction. Roundabouts are generally less safe for cyclists than other types of junctions and particularly so in locations such as this where there may be little or no space for separate provision for cyclists.
We oppose the proposal to allow parking on the bus lane on Rathgar Road after 10am all day. Allowing parking in the bus lane would push cyclists out into the fast-moving main traffic lane and would expose cyclists to the hazard of car doors opening into their path.
We understand the general demand for more parking, as we live in a largely car based society, but increasing on-street car parking will overall have a negative effect on the ‘village atmosphere’. The provision of additional parking will encourage even more people to use their cars to travel to the Village, leading to an increase in congestion, increased pollution, and a decrease in the attractiveness of the public realm in the Village. The majority of those using the Village live within a radius of one or two miles from the Village and they should be actively encouraged to walk or cycle.
We would welcome acknowledgement of receipt of this submission, and look forward to observing the fruits of this process.
Dublin Cycling Campaign
11 November 2014
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