11 June 2018

Cork cyclists call for 1,000 bike stands at Páirc Uí Chaoimh

The Cork Cycling Campaign stated that cycling is an important part of the solution to residents’ concerns about parking and traffic congestion for matches and concerts at Páirc Uí Chaoimh.  The new stadium is an asset to Cork City and the wider region. Matches bring people and economic activity to the city. However, residents in the area should not have to pay for the nuisance of having ten thousand cars parking on their doorsteps.

As we enter Bike Week, Cork Cycling Campaign contend that cycling is a key solution for these gridlock and parking issues. However, people won’t consider cycling until proper bicycle parking facilities are provided.  The Cycling Campaign notes that the Cork County GAA Board is bound to provide “a minimum of 100 high quality covered cycle parking facilities” as a condition of its planning permission for the new stadium. Today these cycle parking facilities simply do not exist. Cyclists have no other option than to lock their bikes to a few handrails, inconveniencing people who might need to use these railings.

Justin Fleming of the Cork Cycling Campaign noted “Cork GAA is doing very well out of Páirc Uí Chaoimh. They can well afford to put in proper bike parking, way beyond the legal minimum”.

Cork Cycling Campaign therefore called on the GAA:

  1. To provide 1,000 bike stands around Páirc Uí Chaoimh. Bike stands are relatively inexpensive and take up remarkably little space compared to car parking. This figure is large enough to take an equivalent number of cars out of the vicinity.
  2. To actively promote walking, cycling, and park-and-ride and park-and-cycle facilities for matches.
  3. To monitor and report on the transport patterns of event attendees at Páirc Uí Chaoimh with a view to improving the experience for all stakeholders.

Such actions would show good neighbourliness towards residents and indicate that their concerns were being taken seriously.  Croke Park, for instance, has an environmental policy which acknowledges its “responsibilities as a member of the local community” and makes a specific commitment to “The prevention of pollution by managing stadium events and activities in an environmentally responsible manner.”  Cork deserves no less.

The group also supported the recently proposed two kilometre parking exclusion zone around Páirc Uí Chaoimh on match days.

The group notes that residents around Turner’s Cross and Musgrave Park face similar parking and traffic and also called on these stadia to provide a large number of bike stands.

Páirc Uí Chaoimh is already well served by the Passage West-Mahon Greenway, and there are plans for cycle routes into the city through the Docklands.  Indeed, the proposed Lee to Sea Greenway would unify existing greenways from Ballincollig to Crosshaven, providing an active and sustainable travel to the stadium from all around the city. That means the stadium should soon have extremely good walking and cycling access.  Indeed, some people are already using the Blackrock Railway as a shortcut to the stadium.

Cork Cycling Campaign works with local councils, community groups, and other institutions to improve cycling infrastructure and encourage people to cycle, which will also complement public transport. The Campaign’s focus is primarily on everyday cycling – that is, cycling as a form of transport. We also support the development of recreational cycling facilities.  The Campaign strives to improve safety for all cyclists and to encourage mutual consideration, understanding, and respect between cyclists, motorists, and pedestrians.