Pedestrians 'must be prioritised' in county Cork towns

Pedestrians 'must be prioritised' in county Cork towns
People doing their best to keep their social distance in Cobh, Co Cork earlier this month. Picture Dan Linehan

PEDESTRIANS must be prioritised more throughout County Cork, according to a Green Party Councillor.

The comes following similar calls for more pedestrian space in the city last week.

Councillor Alan O’Connor has asked Cork County Council to consider options to allow pedestrians to maintain social distancing adequately, particularly in built-up areas.

“I’ve often had to step off the footpath, onto the road, in order to pass someone by the requisite two metres, and I’m sure others would have had the same experience,” Councillor O’Connor said.

“This is a debate which is being had elsewhere in Ireland and abroad. Similar adaptations have been called for by Green Party councillors in Cork City, while Dublin City Council are beginning to act,” he added.

The Green Party in Cork City submitted a letter to the Executive of Cork City Council listing a number of options that could be easily implemented, earlier this month.

Councillor O’Connor has said a number of measures such as a reduction in the width of carriageways, the creation of one-way systems and pedestrianisation could be implemented across the county.

“I think that these actions might be low-cost, or cost-neutral, and could be put in force with cones, bollards, or planters. By reducing speed limits in built up areas to 30km/hr, for example, one would swiftly create a more hospitable and safe environment. Each town and village would have to be assessed in its own context though, of course,” he said.

“By making our towns and villages easier places to visit in confidence, we would not only create a more pleasant walking and cycling environment for exercise during the crisis, we also create the conditions for local businesses and town centres to thrive in the long term, if and when restrictions on particular commercial activities are lifted,” he added.

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