Cork plan to include 'total package' of sustainable transport

Cork plan to include 'total package' of sustainable transport
The Cork Metropolitan Area Transport Strategy (CMATS) is set to map out transport plan, including bus, rail and, potentially, light rail.

A FORTHCOMING transport plan for Cork will include ‘a total package’ of sustainable transport, the head of Cork City Council has said.

The Cork Metropolitan Area Transport Strategy (CMATS) is set to map out the prospect of direct connectivity from Ballincollig to Mahon through the city centre.

The plan, which was due to be published 10 months ago, has been hit with a number of delays.

Cork City Council chief executive Ann Doherty: Plan will excite the public.
Cork City Council chief executive Ann Doherty: Plan will excite the public.

However, Ann Doherty, chief executive of Cork City Council, has seen ‘high-level drafts’ of the document and said the proposals will excite the public.

“We are waiting for the public consultation but it is really exciting when you see the whole picture of the role of pedestrian activity, cycling and public transport, whether that is bus, the rail out of the city and a realisable light rail, as well as the road network; it is a total package of transportation,” she said.

“There is a natural connectivity from the outer sides of Ballincollig in the west into Curraheen, Bishopstown, Wilton, the city to the train station, Tivoli and the other side of the river in Blackrock and Mahon.”

Ms Doherty added: “There is an opportunity to do a huge connectivity from one side of the city to the other.”

As for the long-mooted Cork Luas, Ms Doherty said that light rail is entirely dependent on population, not time.

“There are population figures that support different types of public transport. How we develop is important.

“Large areas of urban sprawl are not the way to create public transportation.

“It is not about time, it is about managing development in a way that drives the business case for light rail.

“Bus Connects will be a pre-runner to light rail. The route should be thought through in a way that it can become the light rail route,” she added.

It is understood that the CMATS will also include measures for a park and ride network around the city but Ms Doherty warned that the bus corridors need to be established first.

Otherwise, people will simply be sitting in traffic, she added.

It is being prepared by local authorities, in partnership with the National Transport Authority and Transport Infrastructure Ireland and will propose a range of public transport improvements including a possible LUAS-style, light rail or rapid bus system through the city

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