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Cherrywood Draft Planning Scheme (DLR Co Co) - Road Submission

  • 19-10-2012 8:58pm
    #1
    Closed Accounts Posts: 1,735 ✭✭✭


    Hi folks, I don't know how many are aware of the draft planning scheme for Cherrywood (Dun Laoghaire/Rathdown) - however, it's one of the Strategic Development Zones (SDZ) around Dublin - included are the road layouts. The Cherrywood SDZ straddles the R118 Wyattville Link Dual Carriageway. and is flanked by both the M50 South Eastern Motorway and N11 Bray Dual Carriageway. A large part of my submission concerns the National Cycle Manual which I think is largely flawed - no detailed road plans for Cherrywood were available, but there are some interesting routes planned, including a new route across the M50 bypassing the Carrickmines Interchange - please see >>here<<. The following is the submission made:
    CHERRYWOOD DRAFT PLANNING SCHEME
    Submission by Irish and Proud:

    Declaration of Interests:
    I’m a road enthusiast (Boards.ie (Roads Forum)), motorist and long distance pedestrian as well as a regular train user. I used to cycle a lot, but don’t anymore. As a road enthusiast, I’m all for motorway provision but also support the provision of Greenways (for cyclists and pedestrians). I also have an interest in railways and fully support the DART Underground (annoyed that this is not going to be built) and Metro North to a lesser extent. I strongly support the LUAS as an intra-city mode and occasionally use it.

    Introduction:
    While I do have a few reservations in relation to road policy in the Cherrywood Draft Planning Scheme, I do greatly welcome the use of grade separation between local traffic and motorized traffic entering/exiting the M50 and N11 routes. It is IMO very important that there is an exclusive route for medium/long distance motor traffic while other routes are designed with greater emphasis on alternative travel modes – public transport/cycling/walking. One can not reasonably expect motorists to put up with every urban road being traffic calmed bar the motorways (in my mind, Ballymun is an example of what not to do – it’s plain dangerous IMO) – cars do have to go somewhere and interestingly, the National Cycle Manual (which I generally oppose) does state that towns should be bypassed so as to release road space for alternative modes – in the case of Cherrywood, the R118 Wyattville Link is that Bypass (along with the N11 and M50 arteries) and its role as a major traffic route should not be compromised in any manner.

    Cherrywood Bound Traffic Exiting the M50:

    As a driver, I do have a major concern regarding abrupt speed transitions. One has to remember that motorists coming off a 120kph motorway are conditioned for high speed travel (but I do observe the 120kph limit) and with this in mind, my major concern is the left slip off the R118 for Cherrywood itself and its proximity to the Lehaunstown Interchange (M50 J16). Now, this slip will (as I understand it) take traffic directly into a 30kph zone off the R118 – this traffic would be fresh from the motorway – regardless of traffic stopping for signals at the top of the M50 exit ramps - hence, one still has to remember that motorists are likely to be still in the frame of mind for high speed travel at the point IMO – my main recommendation is that the R118 from the Lehaunstown Interchange to the main spine road (where the current roundabout is sited) should have a speed limit of 80kph in order to act as a decompression zone and that the proposed left into Cherrywood should be scrapped – this should be replaced with a left slip from the end of the 80 kph zone into the main spine road (hence, the Southwest quadrant of the roundabout should not be built on) – this road as I understand it will be 50 kph as opposed to the previously mentioned 30 kph zone – I do think the main spine road should be 60 kph though. Speed limits should be reasonable and realistic – with such in place, enforcement should be rigorous, especially in urban areas – traffic calming should only be used for awareness and treatment of potential black-spots – such should not be used for enforcement as this IMO is akin to taking up weeds without taking their roots (the underlying problem is still there – drive attitudes). I’m all for integrated transport, but totally oppose anti-car ideologies.

    National Cycle Manual:
    Before following the National Cycle Manual (NCM) word for word, I do think the planners should seriously consider doing extra research on cycling infrastructure and visit countries like Holland and Denmark to see how things are done there before coming to any conclusions – many designs in the National Cycle Manual are deeply flawed IMO and the Killiney Towers Roundabout (remodelled to NCM specs’) is AFAIK lending weight to the above argument with accidents happening where none were apparently happening before. Regarding junctions in general, I have being viewing videos of some Dutch solutions and seriously wonder what on earth have the NTA being doing – did they do any research??? Any NTA design that may be used should be put through a rigorous independent safety audit and amended to reflect shortcomings – it should also be tested against relevant Dutch designs etc.

    Also, it is of extreme importance that the road infrastructure is designed for all modes – that includes: walking, cycling, motoring, public transport, service vehicles, emergency vehicles, people with mobility issues (including old people) etc – I feel that the NCM ignores many of these considerations. I am also predicting major problems with left turn design in the NCM which is in my mind, a ‘turn the clock back’ solution(?) as opposed to a proper rebalancing of modal priority (seems to be reflected in Dutch policy). Two issues that come to mind would be added traffic congestion and blocked cycle lanes. I also feel that that public outrage (as these NCM designs are rolled out) could lead to complete reversal given how politics work in this country and that we could be back to a car dominated culture again to the exclusion of other modes – I’m sure that’s not what you want and it’s not what I want either – we need to leave behind a past of auto-totalitarianism and auto-bashing as neither of these are fair, viable, sustainable or even realistic – the is the 21st Century, not the 1980’s (when the car was king) or 1990’s (when the car became villain) – we need to see more maturity in transport planning rather than workmen blaming their tools – what we need now is proper integrated transport planning that make all modes work in tandem rather than against each other (partisan transport politics).

    Back to the specifications themselves, instead of scrapping left filter lanes and slips along cycle routes, why not consider 30/60 deg slips with pedestrian priority (this would curb speed) - or use parallel slips (involving a long narrow island) to allow cyclists and motorists going straight through a junction to proceed simultaneously (while left turning traffic would wait, to the left of the said island, thereby allowing straight through cyclists to cross safely in front). We seriously need to rethink the NCM and replace it with a new Urban Road Design Manual (URDM) which would cater for the needs of cyclists, motorists, pedestrians and public transport (all in alphabetical order – nothing to do with importance – should be equal IMO) where appropriate – for example, in shopping areas etc, the pedestrian should be king barring compromises with public transport and motorists with physical disabilities – within suburbs, cycling might be the principle mode – travel between different parts of the city might be best done by Luas, while long distance travel might be best served by motorways and designated quality roads within urban areas such as the N11, M50 and R118 in the vicinity of Cherrywood.

    On the subject of cycling and walking, issues such as loose aggressive dogs on the road should be tackled – by past experience I found that they were particularly aggressive towards cyclists (especially in rural areas). Also, it is of extreme importance that parties responsible for road soiling (farmers, builders etc) should be compelled to regularly clean up after them and take measures to reduce the problem in the intervals – road soiling is very unfair to pedestrians and cyclists, and can be very dangerous for motorists due to compromised traction.

    That concludes my submission.

    Irish and Proud

    Boards.ie – Roads Forum


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,783 ✭✭✭Chris_5339762


    Interesting submission but dear god dont use "IMO" in a semi-formal letter :D


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