Friday 30 September 2016

Growing gridlock in Dublin 'a threat to economic recovery'

Published 22/05/2015 | 02:30

Traffic in Dawson Street in the capital is brought to a standstill by a recent water protest martch
Traffic in Dawson Street in the capital is brought to a standstill by a recent water protest martch

Business chiefs have warned that congestion in Dublin is a threat to economic recovery after the capital was ranked the ninth worst city in Europe for traffic.

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The annual congestion index from satnav maker Tom Tom claimed that the city was worse than both London and Paris.

Belfast fares poorer again, and is ranked seventh worse in Europe.

In the index of cities with fewer than 800,000 people, Dublin is ranked fourth.

The data from Tom Tom devices installed in vehicles showed that the most congested day last year Tuesday, September 30.

Dublin Chamber of Commerce chief executive Gina Quinn claimed traffic congestion had been preventing companies from growing and creating jobs.

"Dublin's transport system had been creaking even in the downturn due to a failure to invest. With Dublin's recovery in its infancy, the pressure on infrastructure is already curtailing business activity in the city," Ms Quinn said.

"A recent poll of our member companies found that 80pc of firms believe that congestion is a competitiveness issue for Dublin. "When you consider that within five years there will be an additional 80,000-90,000 workers coming into Dublin every day to work, the strain on our roads and our public transport infrastructure is only going to intensify."

Ms Quinn said the traffic situation in the capital was a threat to the recovery of the country.

"If the recovery is to move up through the gears, then Dublin, as the engine of the national economy, must be supported and allowed to grow," she added.

"Dublin is responsible for 42pc of Ireland's GDP. To put that in context, London accounts for 21pc of the UK economy. We must do everything we can to ensure the Dublin region remains attractive and competitive on the world stage."

The cities with the worst traffic congestion include Istanbul, Moscow, St Petersburg, Mexico City and Chongqing.

Irish Independent

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