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Landmark College Green plaza for Dublin refused on transport impact

Words: Roger Milne
College Green, Dublin / Shutterstock_366175397

Dublin City Council’s ambitious but controversial plan for a €10 million pedestrianised plaza at the capital’s College Green has been rejected by An Bord Pleanála.

The planning agency said the development would give rise to “adverse impact on pedestrians and on bus transport within the city centre and would therefore be contrary to the proper planning and sustainable development of the area”.

The council was hoping to create a new civic space in the heart of the capital by developing a pedestrian and cycle plaza, and banning all traffic, including buses and taxis, from accessing Dame Street through College Green.

An Bord Pleanála said the principle of the scheme was acceptable but questioned the traffic analysis presented by the council. It warned of a negative impact on the bus service.

It was particularly concerned about the effect of rerouting buses to the city quays, where it said there were “unresolved capacity issues”.

The city council will respond once it has considered the Bord’s lengthy report. The decision, though, is a victory for Dublin Bus. It had branded Dublin City Council’s plans to restrict bus movements as “socially regressive”.

Media reports highlighted that Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has tweeted he was “disappointed” at the news. “Hopefully Dublin City Council can work up a revised proposal,” he commented.

Image credit | Shutterstock