Construction seems to have begun on the Marlborough St. Bridge project. This is a pedestrian bridge linking Marlborough Street and Eden Quay on the north side of the Liffey connecting to Hawkins Street and Burgh Quay on the south side. The plan was conceived by Dublin City Council. The bridge will carry the southbound track of Luas line “when required.” The bridge will approximately 26 metres wide and 48 metres long, so it is clearly designed for road traffic.
Stated reasons for this bridge:
- It will allow for the reorganisation of the Dublin Bus route network through the provision of new cross-city routing possibilities.
- additional capacity for buses and taxis crossing the River Liffey, as well as providing an additional river crossing for pedestrians and cyclists.
The Bridge was supposed to carry diverted bus and taxi traffic during the construction of the (cancelled) “Metro North” project. The bridge will also allow Dublin Bus to “further revise their network in the City Centre.” That is, divert routes down a narrow street located next to a wide street. How this constitutes good transport planning is unexplained.
“O’Connell Bridge is the busiest walking route in the country with 6,000 pedestrians crossing every hour. It is expected that at least 10% of these pedestrians will use the Marlborough Street Bridge instead, easing pressure on O’Connell Bridge.” (Pressure of what? the number of people, the weight of the people crossing the bridge?)
“There will be knock-on economic benefits for Marlborough Street and Hawkins Street, opening them up to new commercial opportunities.”
The bridge will carry two southbound bus lanes. One lane heading down Hawkins Street and the other turning right onto Burgh Quay. The southbound track for the Luas Line is in the centre. This line will head along Hawkins Street towards Trinity College, Dawson Street and onto St. Stephen’s Green.
Why this project is an expensive and scandalous waste of taxpayers money:
- It will remove large sections of the quay wall on both sides of the Liffey, further destroying the 18th quay frontage, already much damaged by the “Liffey Boardwalk,” and the junk architecture that has scarred the quayside from Heuston Station to O’Connell Bridge., all funded by tax incentives.
- The size indicates a road bridge, there is no evidence that further sections of the Luas will be built, or if they are, why running them down another bridge removed from O’Connell St. will increase Dublin’s public transport capacity. The bridge will increase traffic into Marlborough St., a small Dublin street. Dublin City Council should be reducing traffic into the city centre, not seeking to expand it. DCC has provided no evidence why Dublin needs yet another bridge.
- Traffic will be channelled down Hawkins Street, the traffic into College Green will increase and any hope of reducing traffic in College Green is lost if the bridge is constructed.
- Funnelling the Luas line down Hawkins St. and around Trinity College makes no logical sense, when the line can be run down D’Olier / Westmoreland Streets into College Green from O’Connell St. The objective however, is not to provide a transport system for the capital, but to create a system that does not interfere with existing road traffic. The Marlborough St. Bridge Project can be regarded as a continuation of DCC’s 1960′s “road widening” plans, the car is the centrepiece of city planning, the Luas and cycle lanes are fluff on the surface.
- The phrase, "knock-on economic benefits for Marlborough Street and Hawkins Street, opening them up to new commercial opportunities," signals a re-zoning fest of O’Connell and Marlborough Streets, taxpayer guaranteed.
The Marlborough Street Public Transport Priority Bridge, Dublin City.ie, August 2011 -
Marlborough Street bridge plan looks increasingly absurd amid decimated city centre traffic levels, by Vincent Byrne, Indymedia Ireland, Tuesday January 24th, 2012 – http://www.indymedia.ie/article/101265