A petition for the creation of a cycleway for healthcare workers to get from one hospital to another in the city has been launched.
Addressed to Cork City Council, Cork City Councillors and executives of hospitals across the city, the petition has received over 1,500 signatures.
The campaign, launched by Irish Doctors for the Environment (IDE), would allow for the safe cycling of healthcare workers on a route that would stretch from Cork University Hospital (CUH) to the South Infirmary Victoria University Hospital, Bon Secours Hospital, and the Mercy University Hospital.
Green Party Councillor Colette Finn who has been closely involved in the cycleway said that “there is no easy route” which has been “part of the problem”.
“Basically, the city has been built without thinking about cyclists as such and that’s been the problem. So, you’ve various pinch points along the way.
“You’re having to deal with an established city that essentially was planned in olden times,” she said.
The IDE group said that Covid-19 gave healthcare workers a glimpse into what cycling to and from work and between the various city hospital campuses safely on quieter streets would look like.
As the Government restrictions begin to ease and the country comes out of lockdown and roads become busier once again, the group are urging Cork City Council to implement measures that will protect healthcare professionals and locals who make such journeys.
Cllr Finn said that people “got used to being able to cycle safely” with no cars on the road and “found it very pleasant”.
“Now they’re saying we need more of this instead of less and how do we do it so they’re putting it up to the City Council for help and ideas.” Cllr Finn said that City Council is “favorably disposed toward facilitating” the cycleway as much as possible.
She is meeting with Director of Services Gerry O’Byrne this week where she said that options for the cycleway may be looked at.
She said that funding for the potential cycleway would be sought through the National Transport Authority’s (NTA) budget for walking and cycling infrastructure post-Covid-19.