Dáil Éireann - Volume 531 - 22 February, 2001
Written Answers. - Dublin Traffic Management.
Mr. Callely Mr. Callely
47. Mr. Callely asked the Minister for the Environment and Local Government the input and relationship his Department has with the Dublin Transportation Initiative and the Dublin Transportation Office; the evaluation and feedback he receives on their projects having regard to his reply to Parliamentary Question number 40 of 29 June 2000; if he has satisfied himself that productive progress is being made; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [4997/01]
Mr. Dempsey Mr. Dempsey
Minister for the Environment and Local Government (Mr. Dempsey): The Dublin Transportation Office, which operates under the aegis of my Department, was established as a corporate body in 1995 under the Local Government Services (Corporate Bodies) Act, 1971 to co-ordinate and monitor the implementation of the Dublin Transportation Initiative Strategy. The DTO steering committee, on which my Department is represented, has primary responsibility for conducting the business of the DTO. My Department is also represented on a number of the DTO's specialist committees.
I am satisfied that satisfactory progress is being made with the implementation of the DTI strategy.
 The DTO policy document “A Platform for Change”, which was launched by An Taoiseach on 2 October 2000, sets out a comprehensive integrated strategy to respond to the transportation needs of the greater Dublin area, GDA, in the period to 2016. This strategy document updates and builds substantially on progress achieved under the Dublin Transportation Initiative final report already approved by the Government in 1995, taking account of the strategic planning guidelines published in 1999.
Further work is being completed on the detail of the strategy, including an examination of the various demand management options available with a view to ensuring that the greatly enhanced public transport facilities, which will be provided, will be utilised to the greatest extent possible.
The total estimated capital cost of the strategy is £14.2 billion and implementation is expected to: result in a high quality public transport service being available to most people within 10 minutes walking distance of where they live; increase the share of the market accounted for by public transport from 35% to 65%; reduce congestion; improve accessibility; and result in significant environmental gains including reductions in energy use and emissions below what they would be otherwise.
During the period 1994 to 2000 the Dublin Transportation Office paid out grants amounting to £71.5 million on traffic management schemes in the greater Dublin area. Under the national development plan, over £3 billion is provided to continue DTI related funding through the period 2000-2006.
The DTO is currently preparing a new short-term action plan, designed to advance and accelerate a set of measures, consistent with the DTI strategy, which can be completed in the period to end 2003. This plan will be completed in the near future.
Good progress was made with the implementation of the last short-term action plan, 1998-2000. For example, all 150 of the planned new buses have been delivered; work is proceeding on the planning, design and implementation of the quality bus corridor, QBC, network with four QBCs now in operation and five to be introduced before the end of April 2001; the programme of platform lengthening is well under way; delivery of the additional DART rolling stock and railcars has commenced; and the upgrading of the Maynooth-Clonsilla rail line has been completed.
Finally, Dublin participated in European Car-Free Day on 22 September 2000. The aim of this event was to promote the use of public transport and alternative modes of transport. From an awareness perspective the event was very successful and will be repeated on Saturday, 22 September 2001 and on the same date annually thereafter.
Dáil Éireann 531 Written Answers. Dublin Traffic Management.