Car parking spaces should be located away from homes to discourage usage, Oireachtas hears

Car parking spaces should be located away from homes to discourage usage, Oireachtas hears

'Transport-orientated development also means active discouragement of car-usage and ownership, by reducing parking availability or situating parking away from homes, at garages at the outskirts of the development,' expert says.

Car parking spaces should be located away from homes to encourage people to give up their cars, an Oireachtas committee has heard.

The Oireachtas housing committee met on Tuesday to discuss the issue of urban regeneration, with Dr Cathal FitzGerald, senior analyst at the National Economic and Social Council (Nesc), saying regeneration was only possible with the availability of transport.

"Transport-orientated development means locating higher-density housing, typically in excess of 50 dwellings per hectare, within a radius of 400m to 800m of a transport stop.

"That transport stop is usually light rail or a dedicated bus corridor serving rapid bus transport (BRT). So, more of the homes are walking or cycling distance from public transport. That transport must be high quality, high frequency and be integrated in a network.

Transport-orientated development also means active discouragement of car-usage and ownership, by reducing parking availability or situating parking away from homes, at garages at the outskirts of the development."

Fianna Fáil Dublin North-West TD Paul McAuliffe told the meeting that towns in his constituency — Finglas, Ballymun and Santry — have been left at risk of dereliction because they are "sandwiched" between two local authorities and much of development proposed is overly intense.

Dr Sarah Rock of TU Dublin told the meeting there is a need to make any development walking-friendly. 

She said in regeneration, the "rush tends to be towards other modes of transport", but if areas, particularly older areas, are not walkable, they will not succeed.

Sinn Féin's Eoin Ó Broin asked the witnesses for models which could avoid delays to the implementation of public transport projects. He said more needed to be done to ensure the planning process on transport projects were less divisive and receive more input.

Dr Lorraine D'Arcy of TU Dublin told Mr Ó Broin the Irish transport system was "fundamentally based around the commute", meaning there is a policy bias towards that form of travel. She said more should be done to promote "all-day travel".

Conn Donovan of the Cork Cycling Campaign told the committee that development of homes must not be used to justify more road infrastructure. He said if communities are being asked to make 70-80% of their journeys without private cars, they should not be "high-car" environments.

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