Work on latest Luas line will disrupt city centre traffic
MAJOR TRAFFIC disruption can be expected on St Stephen’s Green and surrounding streets in the coming months with the start of work to facilitate the construction of the cross-city Luas line.
The changes, most of which will be permanent, will involve the removal of traffic lanes and parking spaces, and the reversal of traffic flow. The work is the first step in a process which will see cars removed from much of the city core to create space for the new tram line.
Work on the line, known as Luas BXD, including filling in basements and diverting utilities, is due to begin next year, with trams operational by 2017. No cars or buses will be able to drive down Dawson Street. All traffic will also be removed, along with all parking spaces, between Grafton Street and Kildare Street on St Stephen’s Green North.
Kildare Street, currently one way southbound, will become two-way. Turning left from Kildare Street onto the Green, general traffic will be reduced to one lane heading east to Merrion Row.
Only buses will be able to turn right onto St Stephen’s Green East from the Shelbourne Hotel side. Westbound, there will be one general traffic lane, which will turn right onto Kildare Street.
On the east side of the Green, cars coming from Hume Street will be able to turn right only, either to take the lane which eventually turns onto Kildare Street, or to turn onto Merrion Row. Buses from Hume Street can turn left and head south.
At the south end of St Stephen’s Green East, buses will turn left onto Leeson Street or go straight ahead to Earlsfort Terrace. There is a laneway just before this junction which provides an exit from the car park of the Permanent TSB head office, and cars exiting here must turn left and continue straight to Earlsfort Terrace.
Car parking will also be removed from St Stephen’s Green East and cycle parking will be provided.
With St Stephen’s Green West already almost entirely occupied by the Green Luas line, motorists’ access will be severely limited.
However, this is just the first in a series of traffic restrictions which will make crossing the city through its centre almost impossible for motorists. The line will run from St Stephen’s Green, down Dawson Street and Nassau Street, through College Green, Westmoreland Street and O’Connell Street, where it connects with the Luas Red line.
It will serve the new DIT campus at Grangegorman and terminate at the Iarnród Éireann station at Broombridge in Cabra.
The city council will this month publish plans for the St Stephen’s Green works and public submissions can then be made for an eight-week period before the plans are returned to the councillors for ratification.