Walking, cycling and permeability in Lucan
I note that only 43% of the trips within the Lucan/Palmerstown/Adamstown area are by walking or cycling. I would suggest that any efforts to respond to this by enhancing walking and cycling routes should be focussed on works which would realistically result in actual increases in walking and cycling. One area of particular focus should be that of enhancing safe routes to schools, including safe routes to schools in the Lucan Village area from areas on both sides of the N4.
With this in mind, the recent replacement of footpaths along Lucan Road was welcome in that it saw some poor patches of path being replaced. But overall, given the scale of expenditure, the project was very disappointing in that it missed the big opportunity of reimagining the Lucan Road corridor to improve safety for pedestrians and cyclists. The project replaced footpaths like-for-like, but failed to address problems such as narrow footpaths or to provide any new cycle infrastructure. Given the overall width of the corridor, a more imaginative approach could have been taken. I would propose the Development Plan should include an objective to redesign the Lucan Road corridor to enhance safety for all users, while protecting the efficiency of traffic flow.
In the context of prioritising walking and cycling routes which would result in actual increases in walking and cycling, I question the draft plan’s proposal to improve permeability for pedestrians along the R136 (Ballyowen Road). Any proposals in this area should be justified by clear local demand and be subject to both public consultation and a democratic consent procedure under the relevant legislation.
Any works to enhance walking and cycling routes should seek to preserve and enhance the visual amenity of the streetscape. In this regard, quality paving and surface finishes should be applied, and brash, gaudy plastic bollards and signage should be avoided.