SDCC – New link road across the Dodder Park?

new-n81-firhouse-link-road-possible
There’s a proposal from council planners to create a new link road between Ballycullen and the N81 at Tallaght, according to Councillor John Lahart (emphasis his):
The Council’s planners say that Oldbawn Bridge is a major bottleneck.

  • The planners say this effects the efficiency of bus services, which regularly face long delays along the Old Bawn Road.  Planners say that this bridge is necessary as a mean of providing an alternative route from the Firhouse area to Tallaght.
  • The final route of the Tallaght Swiftway (bus rapid transport) between Rathfarnham and Tallaght isn’t decided yet but according to planners, there are limited opportunities to cross the M50 and Dodder River.
  • Only elected Councillors can decide whether such a road and bridge can go ahead and we will be making this decision later in the year in October and November.
  • This proposal will be published in the coming weeks and you will have an opportunity to make submissions for and against it.
  • This is a medium to long-term proposal of the Council – it would be a number of years before it proceeds (if it is agreed to proceed).

We should be looking to mode shift away from private cars to cycling/walking/public transport (Minister for Transport Paschal Donohue said the increasing use of private cars for journeys was “unsustainable”). How will pushing a new trunk route through a park (and carving a line across the upcoming Dodder Cycling Greenway) help?

The bridge at Old Bawn is indeed a bottleneck for traffic flow, however, breaking up the Dodder Valley Park (which the Council themselves say “is a unique and priceless asset for the people of South Dublin”) to accomodate another link road will probably only encourage additional traffic. If it’s to improve public transport, then why not make it a dedicated public transport, walking & cycling route and ban private vehicles?

I’d also expect that it’ll pull traffic off the M50 for people who are travelling northbound looking to shortcut onto the N81, especially in the event of an issue on the M50, so creating increased traffic on the Ballycullen road. This road is residential/local access, and will be carrying increased schools traffic with the new schools being built nearby.
It’s worth watching this one.