herald

Friday 15 December 2017

Drivers warned of chaos ahead on the city quays as holidays end

A garda stops a motorist from turning right on to O’Connell Bridge after the changes to the traffic flow were made
A garda stops a motorist from turning right on to O’Connell Bridge after the changes to the traffic flow were made

The first working day of the city's new traffic plan passed with minimal disruption, but motorists are bracing themselves for potential chaos when the school holidays finish.

AA Roadwatch said the city centre can expect "significant changes" to traffic after August following the change of the road layout around the quays.

Starting on Sunday, private motorists were barred from taking a right-hand turn on to O'Connell Bridge from Bachelors Walk.

Bewildered

General traffic has been reduced to one lane from Upper Ormond Quay to Eden Quay on the northside, and from the Rosie Hackett Bridge to Wellington Quay on the southside.

A garda managed traffic at the junction yesterday morning, informing drivers, some of whom seemed bewildered, of the changes.

A garda spokesperson said it was monitoring the new system, as it would any new traffic lay-out, but "nothing unusual" had resulted from the plan.

Conor Faughnan, of AA Roadwatch, said that although disruption had been kept to a minimum yesterday, "we will only truly know what the impact will be later".

He added that there was a higher-than-usual level of traffic on the North Circular Road, which may have been caused by the revamp.

"There was nothing really unusual on Monday morning but you will begin to see the significant changes in the autumn," he said.

"We're just coming up to the end of August now and, when people come back from holidays, that's when we will see the real impact."

A spokesperson for Dublin City Council's traffic department said bus journey times had been reduced by 40pc as a result of the new system.

The city council said the changes were being introduced to reduce delays experienced by public transport users, and to ensure that Luas Cross City is subject to minimal delays.

Head of technical services Brendan O'Brien said the changes would help minimise delays and allow freer movement of public transport across the city as the number of commuters rises.

"Additional bus lanes will alleviate the difficulties faced by public transport on the quays, where the worst delays for buses in the city are experienced," he added.

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