Proposals to build new cycle lanes in Dublin will only add to the “major congestion” in the city, a local businesswoman has claimed.
Dublin City Council plans to reallocate bus lanes in Ranelagh and a car park in Merrion Square to facilitate the new infrastructure but Olivia, who runs a local business, believes it will only cause more problems.
“There’s rarely a time when you can see Ranelagh not congested,” she told Lunchtime Live.
“So, for people who want ease of access in and out of the city, they don’t have it.
“I don’t think adding a bicycle is going to solve the problem basically. How is it going to solve the problem? It’s just going to take up more road space.”
The proposals were drawn up as part of the city’s active travel plans and aim to encourage more people to cycle instead of driving or using public transport.
Cities with a higher numbers of cyclists have less air pollution and healthier populations.
In addition, research by a professor at University College London suggests that while there is a short-term increase in congestion after cycle lanes are built, in the long-term they encourage drivers to reconsider their commute.
One individual who would love to see more cycle lanes in his area is Galway man, Eoin, who runs a ‘cycle bus’ for local children in the morning.
“Each day we take 50 or 100 car journeys off the road because we cycle as a group of parents and kids to get to school and the kids are all pretty buzzed about it,” he explained.
“Everybody knows that the school drop off is a big part of the congestion problem because it just evaporates in the summer when people aren’t going to school.”
The family also drives but Eoin believes that building cycle lanes hugely improves the quality of life in a city.
“No drivers want congestion,” he said.
“All over the world, cities are seeing that putting in good cycle lanes makes city spaces more livable and gets people to where they’re going way faster.
“Paris has put in hundreds of kilometres of cycle lanes in the last three years - lots of them going all the way out to the suburbs.
“London’s got cycle motorways that are getting people in and out much faster. This is happening all over the world.”
Main image: A cycle lane in Dublin. Picture by: Sam Boal/RollingNews.ie