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Letter to DCC Councillors Re: Capel Street

  • Wed 14 September, 2022

DublinTown sent the below email to Dublin City Council Councillors ahead of the recent Central Area Committee:

Dear Councillor

We wrote to you on 11th July in relation to the business perceptions of Capel Street’s traffic free status. In advance of your meeting this week we provide an update below.

1. As per the graph below, Capel Street footfall remains ahead of the 2019 levels but not by the same margin as earlier in the year.

2. The footfall pattern by hour of the day is noted below. This is for Week 33. Footfall peaks between 4 and 5pm daily and falls steadily for the rest of the evening. The pattern shows a higher level of evening activity than many other streets in the city but activity is noticeably in decline post 7pm.

3. As noted in our previous mail, most businesses on Capel Street are disappointed with current levels of trade. At the outset a majority expressed a preference for a hybrid model of evening pedestrianisation and traffic access during the day. Where this is not an option 70% of businesses state that they would prefer to revert to the previous traffic access arrangement.

4. As per our previous mail businesses would welcome changes in traffic flow and traffic light sequencing to assist vehicle egress from the district. This would include:

a. Consideration of 2 way traffic on Kings Inn St.
b. Consideration of 2 way traffic on Swifts Row to assist traffic moving from Jervis St. car parks
c. Changing the layout of Ryders Row (removal of traffic island) to assist egress of cars
d. Allowing vehicles to turn left onto the quays from Aran St. East.

5. A number of businesses have requested that the hybrid model of traffic access by day and traffic free status by night be implemented for the Christmas trading period to facilitate egress from the districts car parks.

6. Businesses feel that there has been an increase in anti-social behaviour since the street was pedestrianised.

7. We had a constructive meeting with Dublin City Council’s CEO, Acting Traffic Manager and Karl Mitchel, Director of Services, in June to discuss matters arising and look forward to a follow up meeting to progress the issues discussed.

Businesses continue to believe that they have been presented with a fait accompli and that their concerns were not fully considered. Dublin Town would be happy to host a meeting between Councillors and local businesses to discuss the issues arising and possible solutions.

If you would like to discuss any of the above or for us to organise a meeting with local businesses I would be happy to hear from you.