Cork's irritated motorists are facing an additional eight-months of road headaches -- Irish Examiner

Senior officials of transport of Cork have defended the controversial new traffic flow plans and insist that they are integral to an overall strategy for managing Cork’s congestion.

The remarks are included in a comprehensive report to city councillors, who voiced concerns at the city council meeting regarding the effect these changes will have on traffic, particularly the removal of right-hand turns on St Patrick’s Bridge and Christy Ring Bridge to allow northbound traffic.

The changes caused chaos on the roads after their introduction last year in conjunction with the MacCurtain St public transportation scheme that is the most recent major initiative to be implemented as part of Council’s City Centre Movement Strategy.

The councillors were outraged about the issue prior to Christmas and the Sinn Fein leader Mick Nugent told the meeting that “things have slowed down a bit” in recent months and he was happy to hear that the issue is being reviewed on a regular basis.

Fine Gael councillor Des Cahill stated that officials had said “all of our issues will be resolved” in September.

“I prefer to imagine that we’ll be in the middle of August when schools start in September, we’ll be pushing for August, to ensure that, when schools go back and we return, our issues will be solved,” he said.

Northbound traffic

In a comprehensive review, city’s director of the infrastructure department, Gerry O’Beirne, said the new traffic rules for northbound travel will be “integral” with the general plan.

“The restrictions to right-turn turns at St Patrick’s and Christy Ring bridges has led to the creation of the required second eastbound traffic lane along Lavitt’s Quay and enhanced the capacity of the junction,” he said.

“These aspects are crucial to the ease of entry into to the city via the north side and will grow as the project progresses. They are is also essential to the ongoing flow of traffic from the southwest side of the city through Bachelor’s Quay.”

The City Centre Movement Strategy, which was adopted as a rule of thumb by councillors a few years ago as well as the Cork Metropolitan Area Transport Strategy both seek to shift more road space in the city centre to bicycles and public transport as well as to manage traffic in the road space.

All of the work completed recently along the northern quays forms an element of the MacCurtain St public transport system that includes bus lanes that are now widened as well as bus-only right turns. bus priority at traffic signals major pedestrian improvements, as well as the creation of a segregated two-way cycling route along the northern the quays.

The final result will be the introduction of two-way street circulation along MacCurtain St and a complete reconstruction of streetscape.

Mr O’Beirne has stated that in the last year, several junctions and routeways have been eliminated The removal of the bus contra flow route at Camden Quay has doubled the capacity of northbound traffic that connects one of N20 or Mulgrave Road. N20 or Mulgrave Rd, while other improvements to Penrose as well as Patrick’s Quay have also significantly increased the flow rate and capacity available on the north Quays.

A new international study estimates that motorists in the city spent the equivalent of 68 hours trapped in traffic between 2022 and 2023.

Twenty22’s Global Traffic Scorecard by Inrix The 2022 Global Traffic Scorecard by Inrix ranked Cork the 71st busiest town in the entire world, with the amount of time lost in traffic increasing 95% over prior year.