Councillors puncture cyclists’ hopes of pop up Salthill cycle lane

The people of Galway have clearly said, ‘We want a safe cycle lane on the Prom for our families during Covid-19.’ We are disappointed that our Councillors have not asked the Chief Executive to apply for special Covid-19 funds through the National Transport Authority (NTA), which would fund the proposed pop-up cycle lane along the Prom, plus more pedestrian crossings and extensive bike parking. Given that future permanent cycle facilities are now tied to the development of flood defences, nothing will happen in Salthill for years and years. The status quo remains: families will continue to share the road with buses, cars, and vans.

Maire Silke of Salthill with her son, daughter-in-law and 8-year-old grandson and members and supporters of the Galway Cycling Campaign at a flashmob gathering to support Council plans for a Covid-19 temporary pop up cycle lane, pedestrian crossings and extensive bike parking in Salthill. Photo: Mike Shaughnessy, Galway Advertiser

The following statement from Galway Cycling Campaign was published in The Galway Advertisers on 16 July 2020 under the headline, Councillors puncture cyclists’ hopes of pop up Salthill cycle lane

“The people of Galway have clearly said, ‘We want a safe cycle lane on the Prom for our families during Covid-19.’ Over 200 of the 1400 public submissions for covid mobility measures received by the Council were for a Salthill cycle lane.

Over 1,400 submissions were received by Galway City Council during a six-week public engagement exercise online.; overr 200 requests were for a safe cycle lane in Salthill. Click on the image to view the map, submissions and comments.

Yesterday, our flashmob gathering on the Prom vibrantly showed that people of all ages and abilities want safe cycling and mobility infrastructure during coronavirus. 

Children, four-legged furry friends, and adult trikes and cargo bikes and joined the Galway Cycling Campaign flashmob gather on Tuesday 14 July to show support for the Galway City Council plans for a Covid-19 temporary pop up cycle lane and associated cycling facilities

“We are disappointed that our Councillors have not asked the Chief Executive to apply for special Covid-19 funds through the National Transport Authority (NTA), which would fund the proposed pop-up cycle lane along the Prom, plus more pedestrian crossings and extensive bike parking.

“Given that future permanent cycle facilities are now tied to the development of flood defences, nothing will happen in Salthill for years and years. The status quo remains: families will continue to share the road with buses, cars, and vans.

There is only one safe and separate path for a child to safely cycle in Salthill – the short path from Blackrock diving tour and behind Galway Golf Club. Photo: Alan Curran

“Now, we must turn our energies towards creating safe routes to schools when they reopen at the end of August. Social distancing will be with us for as long as this killer virus is present.

“We need to enable children and teenagers to walk and cycle safely to school, especially as bus capacity has shrunk and parents may have concerns about car-pooling between different families.”

Galway Cycle Bus hosted a Family Cycle through Knocknacarra from Miller’s Lane to Cappagh Park on Saturday 11 July. Photo: Mike Shaughnessy, Galway Advertiser

World Bicycle Day – Rethinking Mobility: cycling for a safe Covid recovery

As part of UN World Bicycle Day, Galway Cycling Campaign will attend a special webinar on the topic of cycling for a safe Covid-19 recovery and beyond. We have sent an invitation to this event to members of the Galway’s City Mobility Team, all Galway TDs, and to all city and county councillors – and the public are also welcome to join.

A special webinar will take place tomorrow, Wednesday 3 June, to celebrate World Cycling Day and bring together. Rethinking Mobility: Cycling for a safe COVID-19 Recovery and beyond is organised by the European Cyclists’ Federation (ECF).

The event will present recommendations and discuss with leading decision-makers and cycling advocates how we can take advantage of the current crisis to rethink our urban mobility systems and redesign cities for good.  

The guest speakers are significant urban mobility specialists within Europe:

  • Karima Delli, MEP, Chair of Transport and Tourism Committee, European Parliament
  • Christophe Najdovski, Deputy Mayor for Transport and Public Space, City of Paris, and ECF President
  • Miguel Gaspar, Deputy Mayor for Mobility and Safety, City of Lisbon, Portugal
  • Saskia Kluit, Member of Dutch Senate and Director, Fietserbond, The Netherlands
  • Will Haynes, Infrastructure Director, Sustrans, United Kingdom
Karima Delli, MEP

The webinar ‘Rethinking Mobility: Cycling for a safe COVID-19 Recovery and beyond’ will take place on Wednesday 3 June 2020 for 90 minutes duration between 1pm and 2.30pm [14:00 – 15:30 CEST].

All are welcome to join. The event is highly recommended by the Galway Cycling Campaign.

Register here at the website of the European Cyclists’ Federation (ECF).

Galway Cycling Campaign is a member of the ECF through Cyclist.ie – the Irish Cycling Advocacy Network.

World Bicycle Day takes place on Wednesday, 3 June 2020

#ChangeOurStreets – submit your ideas directly to the City Mobility Team

Galway Cycling Campaign and the ‘Change Our Streets’ movement welcomes the online request and mapping tool for ideas to improve mobility in the city during coronavirus. It was made available today, Friday 22 May 2020, by Galway City Council and the City Mobility Team.

Screenshot of Galway City Council Mobility Team request form for social distancing measures with an easy to use map to identify locations

Galway City Council have developed a user friendly online request form to support social distancing during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Kevin Jennings, chairperson of Galway Cycling Campaign said, “We welcome this easy-to-use online form. We are glad that the Council have made the suggestions transparent and map-based, as we suggested in previous correspondence.”

All requests will be populated on a map of the city, so everyone can see requests submitted for areas of interest.

Categories for change: wider paths, lower speeds, space for cycling, cycle parking, maintenance, more space for queuing

Martina Callanan, spokesperson for Galway Cycling Campaign said, “We encourage everyone to use the online request form to support social distancing. If you are concerned about space at a bus stop, touching beg buttons at crossing, need a wider footpath in your residential area, or need space for cycling, you can make a specific request for a particular location. We suggest people bookmark this online form in their web browser to access it quickly and easily.”

She continued, “We welcome the categories for change which include requests for wider paths, lower speeds, space for cycling, cycle parking, maintenance, and more space for queuing. These changes to our streets will make our city safer and more pleasant for walking and cycling for people of all ages and all abilities.”

All requests will be made publicly available on a map on www.galwaycity.ie

Galway City Council says, “Please note this information will be made publicly available on a map on www.galwaycity.ie Please do not include any personal details, names or profanities in your submission.”

Galway City Council says that all requests will be carefully reviewed by the City Mobility Team (CMT) to identify which initiatives can be progressed safely. Galway City Council will update the status of requests, as they are reviewed by the CMT.

Yesterday, Thursday 21 May 2020, Galway Cycling Campaign submitted a 20 page document of 60+ specific suggestions to improve mobility during coronavirus.

#ChangeOurStreets – here’s our specific suggestions

Following wide engagement with residents, communities and businesses across the city, Galway Cycling Campaign has made a 20 page submission of specific suggestions to #ChangeOurStreets to improve mobility in Galway City during coronavirus.

Kevin Jennings, chairperson of Galway Cycling Campaign, said: “We received over 100 suggestions from people who live, work, study and trade in our city. We have reviewed, collated, filtered and reduced these to 60+ suggestions that could be quickly and cheaply implemented as per our city’s Roadmap and Framework mobility plans for Covid-19.”

Download here the Specific Suggestions to the City Mobility Team, submitted on Thursday 21 May 2020.

1 submission. 20 pages. 60+ suggestions.

The submission includes the idea that city centre streets be opened up to people walking and cycling through ‘Share With Care’ zones.

There are also ideas to tweak and complement the Galway Transport Strategy (2016) Primary Cycle and Greenway Network.

New creative ideas are need to improve mobility and maintain safe social distancing

Regarding road design and layout, there are suggestions to improve stacking lanes, roundabouts, traffic signal management, and traffic calming.

Galway Cycling Campaign and our #ChangeOurStreets supporters look forward to liaising closely with the City Mobility Team.

Bikes boost businesses and back re-opening Galway

Galway Cycling Campaign is backing local businesses as Galway city knuckles down to kick-start the economy again.

Ravens Terrace, Galway’s Westend

The movement to ‘Change Our Streets’ is moving up a gear to make Galway city more family friendly, as Covid-19 movement restrictions begin to ease. Chairperson Kevin Jennings welcomed the publication of the City Council’s mobility plan, and sent a letter to the City Mobility Team on Monday to wish them every success.

He said he is delighted that the two principles of our ‘Change Our Streets’ initiative for More Space and Less Speed are at the heart of our city’s plans to get Galway moving and thriving again.

People on bikes spend 40% more in shops

Transport for London research, 2018

He pointed out that Galway Chamber and Westend Traders are two of the business supporters that recognise the value of people cycling.

“Customers using their bike to go shopping is good for business. People on bikes spend 40% more in shops than people driving, according to 2018 research from Transport for London (TfL).”

Open up streets for people on bikes and people walking through ‘Share With Care’ (‘Roinn le Cúram’ ) zones

Martina Callanan, spokesperson for Galway Cycling Campaign, said, “Research shows that people on bikes tend to shop local and are loyal to local traders. The social media hashtag #ShopByBike shows people doing their weekly shop and cycling home again. We have seen baskets and panniers packed with nappies, spuds, and all the usual items.”

Cycle parking outside shops helps keep shopfronts visible. Having a bike stand outside means space for potentially ten customers right outside the door. Per square metre, cycle parking delivers five times higher retail spend than the same area of car parking, according to European research.

Galway Cycling Campaign says that the city centre could open up streets for people on bikes and people walking through ‘Share With Care’ (‘Roinn le Cúram’ ) zones. Dublin City Council installed its first ‘Share With Care’ zone last autumn and cities like Norwich in the UK have used ‘Share With Care’ to revitalise their city centres.

“‘Share With Care’ gives priority to people walking and cycling. We can design our city to make it easier and safer for people of all ages and all abilities to come into town to shop, to eat, to visit a church, and do everyday business,” Ms Callanan said.