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Showing posts from February, 2018

Ireland 2040 - My thoughts

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So, on Friday, the Irish Government presented its grand investment strategy for the next 22 years. Ireland 2040, as this plan is called, is a massive infrastructure investment program that will finally bring Ireland up to speed, and make it ready for the coming challenges according to the government. Of course, the opposition wasted no time in calling foul, with Labour party calling it a failure only twenty minutes after the plan had been announced. Well, if anyone knows failure in Ireland, it's Labour, but back to the topic at hand. The plan will see a total of 116 billion Euros spent over the next twenty years, funding pretty much everything from a new runway at Dublin Airport, and a metro for the capital, to new and much needed motorways, hospitals, ports, the much delayed rural broadband rollout, housing, public transport improvements, and much, much more.
In fact, Ireland 2040 is split into two distinct documents. One is the National Planning Framework, which in fact goes all …

Rising Ambition - Towering Idiocy!

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You know? Sometimes, I wish the Black & Tans had been more successful in their burning of Cork, had actually managed to flatten the entire city and driven its population away. It would have made things a whole lot easier for urban developers in the following decades, because nowadays, it seems you can’t even build a simple office block without a storm of protests, and god help you if you want to develop anything that’s actually ambitious.
Take the current plans for the redevelopment of Customs House for example. In recent months, a New York based development company has announced plans to redevelop the entire site, integrating the bonded warehouse into a 40 storey mixed-use high-rise development. Once these plans became public, the outcry was immediate and vicious. There were the usual cries of “what about the homeless??” (Article on that is in the works), and other NIMBYist whining, involving all the usual suspects, including the Greens and other left-wing organisations. Recently,…

Get Cork Moving - A vision for public transport in Cork

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Public transport in Cork – a never-ending story. No matter how you twist it, the current situation is completely untenable, and not worthy of a city of coming up to 200.000 people. At the same time, the city is choking in exhaust fumes, the roads are clogged worse than the arteries of a chronic smoker, and more and more new companies are opening up, further inflating the traffic volume. I don’t want to repeat myself here about the current state, I wrote an article about that little more than a year ago, but for the sake of consistency, let’s just highlight the main issues.
First of all, public transport is effectively invisible in the cityscape, unless you know what to look for. Most bus stops do not have a passenger shelter, and many lack even the basics like the name of the stop, or a schedule. What’s more, even those stops that do have shelters and haven’t been vandalised don’t really catch anyone’s eye. On Patrick Street especially, you can never be sure whether you have a bus stop…