A number of streets in Dublin have been pedestrianised this weekend as part of a trial to see if removing vehicular traffic encourages more people to come into the city centre.
The trial started this morning and will run over the next four weekends. Each street will be closed to vehicular traffic between 11am-7pm Saturdays and Sundays and on bank holiday Monday, August 3rd, during the trial.
The streets designated as traffic free during the trial are:
- Anne Street South from the junction of Dawson Street;
- Duke Street from the junction of Dawson Street;
- South William Street from the Brown Thomas car park exit to Chatham Row;
- Drury Street from Fade Street to the Drury Street car park;
- Dame Court From Exchequer Street.
Dublin City Council said the intention is to "support the economic recovery of the city by providing more space for pedestrians during weekends to encourage people to return for shopping and to make use of the many cafes and restaurants".
As part of the initiative temporary street furniture permits have been issued to several cafes/restaurants on the newly pedestrianised streets. This allows them place tables and chairs on the streets, in line with social distancing requirements.
‘Rediscovering our city’
The significant fall in vehicular traffic during the lockdown, with a corresponding increase in the numbers walking and cycling, has led to calls for more street space to be given to non-vehicular traffic.
Council head of technical services Brendan O’Brien said he hopes people will come into the city centre to experience the change.
“We are branding it as rediscovering the city centre after the lockdown. And it will provide people with a much more pleasant space for people to do that.
Mr O’Brien said there will be a more convivial ambiance in the city and that the removal of vehicles will provide space for people to enjoy the centre.