Tuesday, September 06, 2005

All roads lead to O’Connell Street, or so you would think…

THE morning commute to work is becoming harder and harder. I wouldn’t mind but I don’t live THAT far from work, certainly not an hour away, which is how long it takes me to get there.

And the reason I go through this daily drama is down to the ongoing works on Dublin’s O’Connell Street.

Buses, buses and more buses

As soon as you hit Parnell Square, which just before O’Connell Street, you grind to a halt and for as far as the eye can see, a river of double decker buses.

The car commuter can no longer be blamed for the deadlock on O’Connell Street as cars are banned, so its taxis and buses, public transport causing all the hassle.

I had to laugh recently, when Dublin’s Director of Traffic, Dublin City Council’s Owen Keegan said there was no problem on O’ Connell Street. At that time it was taking half an hour to travel the short distance of the road, it’s not much better now.

I suppose if you do not cross over O’Connell Street, it would not be a problem to you, and in all honestly, if you are unfortunate enough to have to pass through the capital city’s main thoroughfare, you’ll know the problems.

This problem has been growing and growing since the rejuvenation works to upgrade the road.

But I suspect something like this would have happened anyway due to the sheer volume of people and vehicles coming through the city centre every morning.

While it probably isn’t a popular thing to say, it might be time that we looked at the bus routes and take some of them off the O’Connell Street route.

My own bus practically leaves me from door to door, from home to work, so while I wouldn’t really be delighted if the bus route was changed, something really needs to be done.

Not all buses have to travel through the city centre.

Roadworks Continuing

While the works are going on, even the GPO is getting a facelift.


Maybe its time now to either get rid of all the gaudy fast food outlets on this important road or at the very least impose some planning bye-laws that makes them conform to some rules about their premises frontage. They really do mar the beauty of the street with both their shops and the litter they deposit on the street at the end of the working day.

Why is this allowed? Surely the best time to pick up rubbish is early morning, when people do not have to wade through bags and bags of smelly refuge with tourists taking photographs of the city’s landmarks framed with black bin bags of sh*t.

Progress on O’Connell Street is being made, albeit slowly, the first picture shows the works taken on August 29th and the next two were taken at the same spot this morning, September 6th.

O Connell St

Men At Work

At Work

O Connell St3
Taken August 28

Taken June

One good thing about the works in particular is how they have dramatically increased the size of the pavements, a great thing as before it was beginning to get seriously congested.

Rushing to get through the madness that is morning time in Dublin, is becoming more and more like the fast-paced life of London.

Dublin or London?

This is certainly not something to be admired. I was always gobsmacked in London about how people rushed here and there, rushed to catch trains in tubes when I would do so having walked down.

Now I find myself cursing tourists and slow people as I run to catch buses or indeed just to catch traffic lights and be on my way.

Hopefully now with the increased pavements, the likelihood of me smacking a tourist out of the way has been diminished.

Here's a link to some of the works at Dublin City Council's website.

Photo Update

I have downloaded a lot of my pictures from Turkey for those of you who would like to see them. Check out the photographic set of Turkish Delight here.

One of my recent photographic projects has centred on reflections, let me know what you think. Check them out here.

All the other sets of pictures can be accessed here, nearly all of them have been updated, including the Dublin set.

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fmk said...

one of the biggest problems with dublin traffic is that everyone thinks you have to travel through o'connell st to get from one side of the city to the other. i've got taxis from the airport to dolphin's barn that insist on going down o'connell st, when the wiser route is to the west, crossing the river anywhere between manor street and islandbridge.

when the council tried to bring in new road signs which would effectively divert traffic away from the center and more toward the periphery, what happened? people complained, and the minister ordered the signs pulled.

yes, the roadworks at the bottom of o'connell st are a problem - but the bigger problem is that we still think of it as being the only way to get from one side of the city to the other.

Red Mum said...

I agree with you completely, cant believe I left that out. I have always wondered why people insist on going through O Connell Street when you would actually go out of your way to avoid it.