Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Dublin has warned that commuters are likely to face significant disruption as a result of a failure to hold a planned public hearing on the future traffic and pedestrian arrangements on College Green.
Deputy Lahart made the comments after it was revealed that An Bord Pleanála cancelled a public hearing due to be held next week due an administrative error.
Deputy Lahart said, “This is nothing short of a fiasco. The authorities have known since December 2008 that the new Luas line would require a redesign of traffic management at College Green following the announcement of the route by the Railway Procurement Agency.
“A railway order was granted in August 2012 and preliminary work began on the project during the summer of 2013. Now four and a half years later, and following the opening of the new Luas line, the authorities have still failed to agree on the traffic arrangements for College Green. This really is a ridiculous situation and there needs to be accountability over the mishandling of this project.
“An Bord Pleanála need to immediately clarify a new date for the public hearing on the future of College Green. We also need to know exactly why the scheduled hearing was cancelled.
“DCC Chief Executive Owen Keegan also needs to recognise that he cannot feasibly introduce sweeping changes to traffic measures at College Green without full and proper consultation with all affected parties, including commuters who rely on public transport services.
“Mr Keegan is essentially now threatening to unilaterally ban all Dublin Bus services from travelling to Nassau Street via D’Olier Street. This will cause major upheaval to the entire public transport network across Dublin City and will directly impact on tens of thousands of Dublin Bus passengers. Mr Keegan should rethink his approach and recognise the detrimental impact that a decision taken without full consultation will have.
“This mess has arisen as a result of the failure of the relevant authorities to adequately plan the traffic arrangements for College Green and surrounding areas in advance of the commencement of Luas services. We all recognise the importance of the Luas, but it’s important to keep in mind that there are tens of thousands of people who rely on other public transport services that also need to be accommodated.”