Courtesy traffic system campaigner seeks green light

IRELAND may get its first “traffic light-free” city centre if the ideas being pitched this week by a UK campaigner come to fruition.

Equality Streets is the brainchild of Martin Cassini who believes that replacing the constraints of traffic light systems with common sense and courtesy will lead to less congestion, fewer carbon emissions, improved road safety and billions of euro in savings. Read more

4 thoughts on “Courtesy traffic system campaigner seeks green light”

  1. This deserves our support. Any move towards a culture of shared road use is directly in our interest. Our main adversary is the opposite: the notion the roads “belong” to motorists. Roads are public space, owned by the public and for use for the public – all of them.

  2. This is a variation on the shared space concept – the idea that all road users can happily co-exist in the absence of traffic lights, signs and lines. It may work in a location where traffic is relatively light and/or car dependency is not at the levels found in the English speaking world but even in the Netherlands, shared space streets are avoided by cyclists because they are not felt to be safe and the idea that a motorist in a hurry for a so called “important” appointment is not going to follow the car in front but instead give way to a cyclist or pedestrian is nonsense.

    Ben Hamilton-Baillie has discussed shared space in Dublin and after coverage in the Irish Times (I think), out of 138 comments arising from the article, approximately 95% were from motorists complaining about current delays at traffic lights. Traffic lights are generally not put in to help traffic flow – (that is why traffic flows better when lights are broken) – they are put in to help pedestrians. Taking out traffic lights will help the main flow of traffic but the ones who will suffer are motorists on side roads and vulnerable road users – pedestrians and cyclists.

    The tenor of the article ‘courtesy campaigner’ and ‘equality streets’ make good sound bites but where is the equality between a cyclist and a HGV? The Equality Streets website sets out their philosophy…….

    We oppose regulation which contrives conflict, dictates our behaviour, and deprives
    us of choice. Based on a trust in human nature rather than an obsession with
    controlling it, Equality Streets could launch an era of peaceful co-existence on our
    roads.

    It sounds more like a manifesto for the British League of Motorists. Cyclists should vigorously oppose shared space/equality streets in any guise. Finally, the opposite of shared use is segregated facilities but that is for another day.

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