Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Transport, Tourism and Sport Robert Troy TD says heavy traffic congestion across Dublin City highlights the need for a dedicated joint operation between An Garda Síochána, the National Transport Authority (NTA), the National Roads Authority (NRA), Dublin City Council and transport providers in the run up to Christmas.
Deputy Troy said, “Increasing traffic congestion has been a growing problem throughout the year, but it has become particularly acute in the run up to Christmas. Traffic gridlock has hindered road users including bus passengers and cyclists and has led to significant disruption right across Dublin City. This problem was entirely predictable and it’s shocking that Minister Ross lacked the foresight to put in place a joint operation to help alleviate traffic congestion.
“Operation ‘Open City’ was last in force in 2014 and was successful in helping to alleviate traffic congestion and get people moving in the run up to Christmas. This operation should have continued this year, especially when you consider the additional pressure that has been put on roads infrastructure since the start of Luas Cross City services. There is still time for Minister Ross to order special measures to be put in place to alleviate traffic as we approach the final run up to Christmas.
“It’s important to note that the start of Luas Cross City services has had a negative impact on other forms of public transport in the city. Bus passengers who rely on services that travel along the quays and O’Connell Bridge in particular have seen their journey times increase dramatically this week. The delays are now on a par with what we saw prior to the implementation of the new road layout on the north quays from last August. This is clearly unsustainable in the long run.
“Luas Cross City will have an enormous positive impact on the city, but it’s important that the needs of other public transport users are kept in focus. There is clearly a significant problem emerging at College Green as buses, taxis and now Luas trams are competing to access what is a vital arterial route for a huge number of public transport users. Serious consideration will have to be promptly given to the layout of College Green, and whether taxis can continue to use the area at rush hour,” concluded Deputy Troy.