herald

Thursday 14 December 2017

Cars left at home as more cycle to work

DUBLINERS are increasingly leaving their cars behind and hopping on their bikes to beat the city's traffic congestion.

The number of private cars entering the central city area every day has fallen to its lowest level in five years, a new survey indicates.

The figures show volumes have decreased by 10.9pc in a decade and 3.6pc between 2010 and 2011.

In contrast, bicycle use is on the rise. Between 2001 to 2011, the volume of pedal cyclists in the city increased by over 35pc.

There was a 41.9pc increase in the period 2006 to 2011 and a 15.4pc increase in the period 2010 to 2011, a Dublin City Council report reveals.

The council conducts traffic counts every year at 33 locations around the cordon formed by the Royal and Grand canals.

The counts take place during November each year, between the hours of 7am and 10am.

The results provide a snapshot of volumes on particular days. According to the data gathered last November, some 60,607 private cars, including taxis, and 6,870 cyclists are entering the cordon daily.

After showing steady declines since the opening of the Dublin Port Tunnel, the number of trucks on the city's streets increased.

Between 1997 and 2010, the figure fell by 70pc, from about 3,200 to less than a 1,000. Last year it increased to 1,176.

Senior council engineer Niall Gormley noted taxis made up 6.1pc of all cars crossing the canal cordon in 2006, increasing to 8pc in 2011.

From 2006 to 2011, the total number of taxis increased by 27.1pc. While we're driving less, we're also walking less.

"From 2001 to 2011 the volume of pedestrians crossing the cordon during the morning peak period decreased by 21.6pc," Mr Gormley noted.

The number of buses passing the count points also fell.

The report will be considered by the council's traffic strategic policy committee next week.

comurphy@herald.ie

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