Submission on Blanchardstown to City Centre BusConnects Corridor
BusConnects is the National Transport Authority’s (NTA) masterplan for bus travel in Dublin. One of the key initiatives is the Core Bus Corridors, in which the NTA proposes to build 230km of bus lanes and 200km of segregated cycle track across all the routes. This would make BusConnects the largest cycling infrastructure project in the history of the state, and a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to enhance and grow cycling for transport.
Through 2022 and 2023 the NTA is submitting planning applications to An Bord Pleanála for many of the Core Bus Corridors of BusConnects. This gives us as stakeholders (and you, as someone interested in improving Dublin’s cycling environment) an opportunity to give feedback. You can see information on the applications here, or by searching on An Bord Pleanála’s website. This scheme was lodged with An Bord on September 8th, 2022.
We need to ensure that BusConnects delivers to its full potential, and we have been engaging with the applicant, National Transport Authority, through all stages of this project including the multiple rounds of public consultation, community forums, and through one to one meetings.
Firstly, we are broadly supportive of this project from Navan Road Parkway to Ellis Quay, though we do request a few minor modifications via condition.
But we outright object to the outer sections of this project. They will deliver unsustainable transport infrastructure for a key district centre. Designs for road widening, poor quality pedestrian and poor cycle infrastructure fail to comply with important national policies such as the Design Manual for Urban Roads and Streets, the Traffic Management Guidelines, the National Cycle Manual and the National Sustainable Mobility Policy. Excessive regard for avoiding any delay to car users results in fast, hostile slip-lane designs, long pedestrian waits at signals and too many spaces shared between people cycling and walking. So-called Transport Impact Assessments have been allowed trump quality of experience for sustainable journeys.
The proposal to increase private car capacity on the N3 through road widening when applicant shows there will be less traffic after the scheme opens, flies against the three core objectives of the National Sustainable Mobility Policy.
Finally, the NTA’s drawings (ARUP were the commissioned engineers) fail to show whether some junctions are signalised.
We’re looking forward to continued engagement - we’ve requested an Oral Hearing before the Bord decide on planning permission - and with the NTA as the design progresses and contractors are given final details.
Meanwhile, do have a look at our submission and the plans, and make your own submission to An Bord for future applications, if you can. Submissions are now closed for this route, but keep an eye out for future ones. We need many voices demanding better cycling facilities or BusConnects won’t fulfil its huge potential. Please:
- Spread the word to your friends and family. Encourage them to make a submission too
- Contact your local councillors and TDs. Tell them you want to see these improvements
Again, you can read our full submission to An Bord Pleanála in the PDF that’s linked below.
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