Greens: Transport the ‘Achilles Heel’ in new National Planning Framework

The Green Party said today that transport is the ‘Achilles Heel’ of the new National Planning Framework, with the new plan, published yesterday, failing to provide meaningful targets for reducing traffic and improving public transport.

Speaking today, Green Party Transport Spokesperson Cllr. Ciarán Cuffe said: “Without clear targets for tackling traffic and reducing congestion we are doomed to repeat the mistakes of the past. The only clear goal for transport is to get people faster by car from city to city by motorway. This doesn’t even take into account traffic in the cities themselves. The Department of Transport’s obsession with interurban driving times has led to transport emissions doubling in the space of a generation, and traffic increasing in our cities and towns. Throwing more roads at the problem is an inappropriate response. Meanwhile our railways are left to wither on the vine, starved of investment. Why aren’t we setting clear targets for faster intercity rail times by 2020?

“We need clear targets for easing congestion in 2020, 2030 and 2040. The Planning Framework has great aspirations for 2050, but by then most people who have worked on it will have retired. We need interim targets for walking, cycling and public transport.

“It is great to see the focus on vibrant and thriving cities in the framework, but we must ensure that smaller towns and villages also benefit. This requires joined-up thinking on Living Over The Shop incentives, mixed-tenure housing, environmental improvements and improving the public realm so that towns become the place where young people aspire to live. Walkability, bikeability and liveability will be the benchmark for success.”

ENDS

Isseed 27Sep17, uppaded 01Oct17

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