STATEMENT: Phoenix Park a disaster waiting to happen – FOI reveals 97% of motorists are speeding.


Patrick Costello TD for Dublin South Central was today speaking following the release of an FOI on speed surveys in the Phoenix Park.  He began, ‘The Phoenix Park is a wonderful resource for our citizens and families, in particular my constituents in Dublin South-Central. Last year I was delighted to see the OPW introduce new pedestrian/cycling infrastructure as well as a new one-way system. These, along with a new safer speed limit, are undoubtedly huge positive changes.’

‘Since these changes have taken place, I have received countless correspondence from constituents to say that they are not being adhered to. I have raised this with Minister O’Donovan by way of Parliamentary Questions. The replies have indicated that while broadly they are being followed, enforcement is not the remit of the OPW but An Garda Síochána.’

Recently a Freedom of Information request was submitted for speed surveys which were carried out in the park. Upon examination of these records, which were shared with Deputy Costello, he commented, ‘The speeds recorded by the survey are frankly startling. For instance, on Chesterfield Avenue, the main thoroughfare, 97% of motorists were recorded breaching the 30km/h speed limit. This road has the Dublin Zoo on one side and the Wellington Monument on the other. Both are areas of high usage by families and children. The hard data shows that there is a blatant breaking of the law by almost every vehicle in the park.’

He concluded, ‘This lack of enforcement is not good enough. We introduced these changes to make the park safer for park users. This is a disaster waiting to happen, we need to be proactive here with enforcement, not reactive. An Garda Síochána have a large headquarters in the park and should be liaising with the OPW to ensure it is a safe environment for all to enjoy. If this issue is continually ignored by both authorities, I am fearful of an inevitable tragedy taking place.’