|O'Connell Bridge at dusk|
I'd like to start by saying hello to Paul Mackie, the editor-in-chief of Mobility Lab. Mr. Mackie commented on yesterday's post on the Arlington model. Please keep reading. On to today's topic, prioritizing active transportation and healthy living in Dublin, Ireland.
A recent post on the Sustainable Cities Collective discussed how Dublin, Ireland is promoting healthier lifestyles through planning for growth. A key part of Dublin City Council 2011-2017 Development Plan includes better transportation links and improvements in pedestrian and bicyclists facilities. The Development Plan also called for more sports and recreational facilities. The core vision of the plan states,
Dublin City Council's core strategy between 2011 and 2017 is to develop Dublin as a place that:
* is clean, green, compact and connected
* has an innovative, smart economy
* contains sustainable neighbourhoods and communities (www.dublincitydevelopmentplan.ie/)
Another component of improving transportation and encouraging healthier lifestyles is the growing popularity of the city's Dublinbike public bicycle rental program. This program was created by Mayor Andrew Montague with the idea of providing a free bike for everyone. Mayor Montague was inspired by the successful bike schemes in cities such as Copenhagen. As in Copenhagen, the idea was initially met with cynicism. (www.thejournal.ie) Nevertheless, Dublinbike is considered one of the most successful public bike rental schemes in the world and there are plans to expand it into Ireland's next three largest cities. The recent visit to the Emerald Isle by Giro d'Italia couple with the success of Dublinbike proved that cycling can become a prominent feature in promoting healthy lifestyles for Dubliners.
|Dublin street sceen|
It has just occurred to me, that the common thread in these posts has been transportation. Specifically how transportation can affect positive changes people's lives. For example, in New Delhi, by simply introducing safe, reliable, and efficient bus and transit lines along the vast stretches of road that crisscross the city, women and girls can travel to work or school without fearing for their personal safety. In the Virginia-Washington D.C. area, we've looked how transit-oriented developments has the potential to revitalize once neglected communities, turning them into vibrant places to live and work. In today's post we looked at how the City of Dublin is looking to encourage healthier living through increased public transport use. In all of these examples, transportation is being used in ways other than just the basic get-from-point-a-to-point-b. When properly planned transportation has potential to (re)create exciting urban centers. If only Los Angeles civic officials could understand this.
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