Luas works to be scaled back as shoppers ready for festive frenzy
Dublin businesses have welcomed news that the Luas cross-city construction works will be scaled back over the Christmas shopping period.
The on-going works, which have slowed down the city with busy routes being closed to traffic, were due to continue over the festive period.
Business group Dublin Town and the Dublin Chamber of Commerce were among the groups that achieved the reprieve after talks with the National Transport Authority and Transport Infrastructure Ireland.
In a message to members, Dublin Town said the planned stoppages were a "fair" compromise.
"We objected to the initial proposals, which would have seen on-going road and paving works during the Christmas trading period," the group said.
"Nor could we endorse subsequent proposals that would have seen on-street works suspended from December 1.
"We believe businesses need to maximise Christmas trade from Black Friday, which falls on November 25."
Transport Minister Shane Ross approved the changes at a recent meeting.
Luas Cross City works will be suspended before Black Friday on Dawson Street, the retail side of Nassau Street and Lower Grafton Street.
It will also be suspended in pedestrian areas in College Green, on Westmoreland Street and the footpaths and carriageways on O'Connell Street.
There will be road works on Parnell Street, however, along the section west of O'Connell Street. The pavements will be clear with full access along the length of the pavement on both sides of the street.
Road access from O'Connell Street to Dominick Street Lower will be widened to two lanes westbound.
In another boost, planned pavement works outside business premises will be deferred until January 2017. There will, however, be paving works around Trinity College in November and December.
There will also be road works around the Irish Life building on Marlborough Street and on Hawkins Street.
Graeme McQueen, of the Dublin Chamber of Commerce, said the solution reached by the various organisations will work.
"The Luas works have resulted in huge disruption for businesses, especially on the south side.
"It can't be stressed enough how vital the Christmas period is," he added.