Walking is a healthy and sustainable form of transport that can improve levels of health in the community, provide activity and vibrancy on the street and in public spaces and reduce road traffic volumes. Pedestrians are at the top of the movement hierarchy. Providing and maintaining a high-quality pedestrian environment is considered critical to promoting a culture of walking, and Dublin City Council will actively encourage walking as the foremost mode of transportation throughout the city.
Dublin enjoys a good level of pedestrian activity for both journeys to work and also for movement within the city. Over 10% of total trips across the city’s canal cordon are by pedestrians and there are particularly high footfall levels on the main shopping streets in the city centre. The implementation of wayfinding and information signage has improved the pedestrian environment in tandem with public realm enhancements. This said, street clutter and potential conflict with other road users can impact negatively on pedestrian movement and can also reduce the prospect of social interaction on city streets.
A strategic pedestrian network helps identify important pedestrian routes in the context of related spaces and key destinations. The Council’s Public Realm Strategy (‘Your City - Your Space’) identifies important pedestrian routes and spaces and sets out actions to improve public realm. An associated Public Realm Plan is being prepared for the core city centre area and takes into account detailed survey work. Locally-focused studies such as the Grafton Street Quarter Public Realm Plan also help re-shape and improve the pedestrian environment.