22 December 2019
Cork City Council has published plans for the Togher Road Public Realm Enhancement project. These plans are available to view at the following link.
While the Campaign welcomes the allocation of investment for this area and recognizes some positive aspects in the scheme (wider footpaths, raised table crossings, opportunities for green strips), overall the Campaign has strong reservations about the approach adopted by the Council and therefore calls on its members, supporters, pedestrians, motorists, and other interested parties to object to the scheme. We ask city councillors to reject the scheme in its current form.
In particular, the Campaign would like to point out:
- There is no dedicated cycle infrastructure in this scheme. 'Shared paths' feature in some instances but these offer a reduced Quality of Service for both pedestrians and people cycling and need to be avoided as far as practicable. We already have multiple places in the city where people walking and people cycling come into conflict. This scheme would greatly increase such conflict in Togher. This is undesirable for people walking and for people cycling.
- The scheme is in clear breach of the Cork Cycle Network Plan (CCNP) which calls for dedicated cycle lanes along this route, which is designated as one of the city's primary cycle routes. Acceptance of this scheme in its current state would show that the CCNP can be ignored with impunity.
- The scheme does nothing to address the primacy of the car as the main mode of transport in Cork City and does not seek to make walking or cycling more attractive options. This is in clear breach of the advice and recommendations contained in the Design Manual for Urban Roads and Streets and the Cork Metropolitan Area Transport Strategy. It also condemns Togher to excessive and avoidable congestion for the indefinite future.
- There is no physical segregation between the road and the shared paths. Based on practice across Cork city, we expect that drivers would abuse this facility for parking.
The Campaign therefore calls on Cork City Council to redraft these plans to create a showcase solution for safe and attractive Active Travel by creating clear and coherent links between the residential areas and along the urban village in Togher in line with best practice and the aspirations of the Cork Metropolitan Area Transport Strategy.
How you can help?
The Campaign is calling on people to submit an observation to Cork City Council before the closing date of Friday 10th January 2020. Your observation does not need to be technical or follow any format. Please state your concerns and opinions in the way you feel most comfortable. Even a simple line will do if you state your viewpoint clearly!
You can submit your observation via the online portal at the link above or in writing via the post.
Once you have submitted an observation, please send a copy to your local Cork City Council Councillor so they are aware of your concerns. Alternatively, please speak to or email your councillor about the issue. The Campaign will submit a detailed observation based on our collective expertise and experience but we need support!
A follow-up of this press release can be found here (8 January 2020)
An drawing of the proposed plan Source: Cork City Council