Taxis may be banned from some bus lanes under Dublin City Council plans

Document titled a ‘traffic wish list’ submitted to Eamon Ryan details 17 desired changes

The document outlines plans to ‘alter’ bus lane regulations ‘to facilitate banning of taxis from certain bus lanes either completely or for specific periods’ such as during rush hours. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

The document outlines plans to ‘alter’ bus lane regulations ‘to facilitate banning of taxis from certain bus lanes either completely or for specific periods’ such as during rush hours. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

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Taxis would be banned from some of Dublin’s bus lanes under plans Dublin City Council has submitted to Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan for consideration.

The local authority submitted a document, titled a “traffic wish list”, detailing 17 changes it was seeking when it met Mr Ryan last month. It outlines plans to “alter” bus lane regulations “to facilitate banning of taxis from certain bus lanes either completely or for specific periods” such as during rush hours.

It also suggests banning rickshaws and calls for “appropriate regulation to address genuine safety concerns” around electric scooters, although it acknowledges their potential contribution towards “sustainable travel”.

The council’s document also outlines a new system of “camera based enforcement” for red light running and the illegal use of bus lanes, which would be carried out by the National Transport Authority (NTA). It states that the Garda were enforcing red light running “using City Council equipment for a short period but have stopped doing it,” and that there “is no legislative provision for (the) use of cameras for enforcing bus lane restrictions”.

Increased charges

The meeting with Mr Ryan was attended by two Green Party councillors and senior council officials including chief executive Owen Keegan. Sources suggested the ideas proposed were largely suggested by the officials rather than councillors.

The document also contains a suggestions that de-clamping and tow-away charges be increased from their current levels of €80 and €160 respectively, arguing that these “charges were essentially set back in 1998 when clamping was first introduced on public roads”.

The document also argues that there should be higher de-clamp and tow-away charges for vehicles parked illegally in loading bays, bus and cycle lanes, on footpaths and in clearways.

It also calls for new regulations to allow local authorities to reduce speed limits as a temporary or emergency measure without needing to go through a bye-law process, which at present can only be done for roadworks.

Pedestrian improvements

The document also suggests that truck drivers are being effectively permitted to flout a cordon which prevents heavy goods vehicles driving through parts of the city, and calls for a change in legislation as “it is currently not being enforced due to a requirement to observe a HGC passing a road sign”.

The officials also told Mr Ryan that they wanted to see amendments to the planning acts that would see “pedestrian improvements” – such as footpath build outs – afforded a derogation from some aspects of planning laws.