DLR C-19 Response: Placemaking - Mobility - Liveability
C-19 RESPONSE: Placemaking - Mobility – Liveability are a series of interlinked pathfinder projects for how our village centres can be reinvented in response to the Covid Pandemic challenge. It demonstrates how people can shop, recreate and socialize and engage with active modes of walking and cycling in an expanded and more liveable public realm.
Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council C-19 RESPONSE: Placemaking - Mobility – Liveability are a series of projects along the suburban coastal area stretching south from Dublin City. This area is characterized by a series of historic Village Centres that have over time become joined together by an expansion of the city suburbs. The projects recognize that the pandemic has changed the manner in how people shop, recreate and highlight the desire to socialise in a digital age. The projects are a model for how Village centres can be reinvented in response to the Covid Pandemic challenge and how they can be linked together by sustainable travel routes. The projects re purpose road space to lead the way in responding to the shift to active modes of walking and cycling and to create an expanded attractive and more liveable public realm.
The first case of Covid-19 was reported in Ireland on 28th February 2020. After restrictions were announced increased numbers of people started walking and cycling locally with a significant increase in use of the County’s Village Centers. The Council identified the need for public realm and mobility interventions, to respond to challenges presented by the public health crisis.
New solutions and adaptations were needed to safeguard public health and safety in the public realm particularly facilitating compliance with physical distancing, but also to respond to the resulting mobility and transportation challenges. These projects were pathfinders for how our villages could be reinvented in response to this challenge. It recognized how the pandemic has changed the manner in how people shop, recreate and socialize.
There were three Pillars to the C-19 response
• Safety -More space for pedestrians and cyclists.
• Mobility - A Shift to active modes of walking and cycling between the towns and villages of the County.
• Liveability- A strategy to assist business reopen by creating an expanded public and more liveable public realm.
The projects utilise a 'placemaking' approach. They were implemented at a rapid pace over several weeks using a dynamic approach with on the ground consultation and co-creation techniques led by an in-house cross departmental team. They were built using temporary materials which gave the flexibility to adapt and change the design quickly if required. They created liveable spaces with new seating, planting and trees.
In Blackrock one-way traffic and counterflow cycleway was implemented yielding significant new areas for public realm. In Glasthule on street carparking was reallocated to create new seating areas. In Dalkey four new public areas were created. The main street was narrowed and resurfaced to create a tighter cross section to slow down traffic. The Coastal Mobility Route delivered a 4.5km two-way segregated cycle-lane. This quick-build mobility infrastructure project was delivered in less than eight weeks and typically has 20,000 people cycling on it each week.