Driving Change: SENATOR’s Influence on Ireland’s Transportation Strategy

Photo Credit: Patrick Jaksic
Photo Credit: Patrick Jaksic

The Irish Government’s Department of Transport recently introduced a proposal for a new strategy aimed at managing and alleviating congestion in Irish towns and cities. Titled “Moving Together – A Strategic Approach to Enhancing Transport System Efficiency in Ireland,” this strategy draws insights from the ongoing SENATOR project pilot in Dublin.

Aligned with the EU-funded H2020 SENATOR project, which explores innovative approaches to address urban logistics challenges, particularly in bustling cities, the strategy integrates insights and progress from the Dublin pilot within the SENATOR project.

Efficient Kerbside Management Strategies

Dublin City Council, in collaboration with Senator partners An Post and University College Dublin, is piloting various initiatives to address urban transportation challenges in Senator’s Dublin Living Lab. This includes exploring effective management strategies for the highly contested kerbspace in Dublin City Centre.

Given the diverse demands on this space —ranging from outdoor dining to parking, deliveries, and multiple modes of transport like micro-mobility, buses, and taxis— managing it effectively poses a significant challenge. The initiative, informally termed “Kicking Chaos from the Kerb,” is beginning to positively influence the national strategy.

In the “Local Authority Climate Action” section of the draft strategy, kerbside management is emphasized, advocating for transportation and land use alignment while promoting sustainable kerbside practices through advanced digital mapping and categorization efforts. Utilizing this data can enhance the effectiveness of demand management initiatives.

A key recommendation in the strategy focuses on ‘Developing Sustainable Freight Distribution Strategies for 5 Cities’. building upon outcomes from the Senator Project within the framework of Local Measures. The report underscores asset sharing and digital freight platforms as key objectives, aiming to establish consolidation centers for deliveries, thereby enhancing kerbside management and prioritization.

Moving Together Strategy

The Moving Together Strategy, spearheaded by the Department of Transport, presents a comprehensive framework showcasing various options available at national, regional, and local levels to enhance efficiency within the transportation system. Its primary aim is to provide guidance and support to both public and private entities in crafting evidence-based actions.

Significantly, the Strategy places a strong emphasis on engaging local communities to ensure the development of customized plans that effectively address their specific needs and preferences. This framework not only offers essential policy direction at the national level but also delineates options applicable at all governance levels. Comprising 35 recommendations, the Strategy is bolstered by an implementation plan for seamless execution.

SENATOR’s Impact on Guidance and Advice Proposals

SENATOR made its impact on the draft strategy, particularly in two key areas: Generators of Demand (Movement of Goods) and enhancing public space utilization. Retail and freight transportation play crucial roles in these domains. Lessons learned from Senator’s implementation mainly revolve around planning for smart loading bay solutions and implementing comprehensive kerbside management strategies, both of which are central to the Senator Project.

The draft strategy acknowledges the critical role of kerbside management in urban transportation, considering it a multifunctional space accommodating various activities such as parking, loading, public transport stops, pedestrian facilities, and cycling infrastructure. It proposes strategies to optimize kerbside space utilization, aiming to alleviate congestion and ultimately enhance well-being.

Additionally, it is worth noting that the Kerbside Management Project is among the 35 projects selected nationally under the Pathfinder Programme, integral to implementing the National Sustainable Mobility Policy. This underscores the government’s commitment to reducing greenhouse gases in the transport sector by 50% by 2030.

“We are delighted that our pioneering work around Digital Kerbside Management in Dublin, delivered through the EU funded H2020 Project SENATOR, has been recognized on a national level as a part of the Moving Together Strategy by Department of Transport. Having access to better kerbside data and how this space is being used is essential to managing it more efficiently. This could potentially reduce congestion and deliver more sustainable outcomes for the city. We are looking forward to seeing the outcome of the public consultation.”Jamie Cudden, Smart City Programme Manager.

More information: gov – New Government Strategy to Manage and Reduce Congestion (www.gov.ie)

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