Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Transport, Tourism and Sport Robert Troy TD has warned commuters will face significant disruption in the months ahead as a result of the delay in making a decision over the proposed College Green Plaza.
Deputy Troy made the comments after it was revealed that An Bord Pleanála is set to delay its decision, which was due at the end of August, until later in the year as a result of a backlog of planning cases.
Deputy Troy said, “The handling of the College Green Plaza project has been chaotic since day one. The project was first announced by Dublin City Council in 2016 but over two years later we are still waiting to hear whether or not it will get the go ahead.
“Dublin Bus first raised concerns over the impact the plaza would have on its cross-city services, with the NTA stating that its support for the project was contingent on Dublin Bus being permitted to run two-way services on Parliament Street. Then the NTA reversed its decision. The public hearings on the proposal were also postponed as a result of an administrative blunder. Now it transpires that a decision on the project will not be made until October at the earliest as a result of a planning backlog in An Bord Pleanála.
“It’s shocking that there is such a cloud of uncertainty hanging over this project considering its impact on public transport services. Dublin Bus have already stated that they cannot begin to redesign bus routes to alleviate traffic congestion until they know what the future of College Green is. This means that the ongoing traffic congestion in the city centre is set to continue in the months ahead and this will have a detrimental impact on the entire bus network across Dublin.
“Minister Ross has serious questions to answer regarding why he has not been pushing his Government colleagues for adequate resources to allow An Bord Pleanála complete its work on time considering the importance of the College Green Plaza project for public transport services in Dublin.
“There will be traffic chaos in the city in the weeks ahead as people return to work, colleges and schools reopen and the winter weather sets in. It’s shocking to think that no proper transport plan for College Green will exist a year on from the opening of the Luas Cross City. Minister Ross and his Government colleagues are clearly winging it,” concluded Deputy Troy.