Pages

Showing posts with label DRD. Show all posts
Showing posts with label DRD. Show all posts

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

Belfast Transport Hub Consultation Campaign Launched

Translink, in conjunction with the Department for Regional Development, are working to explore the opportunity of creating a new integrated transport hub in Belfast on the site of the current Europa Buscentre and Great Victoria Street Rail Station. 

The Hub will be designed to cater for forecast passenger demand, alleviate constraints on the network, improve operational performance and enhance the passenger journey experience.


It is envisioned to be a modern, multi-modal, transport interchange that will enhance the environment, serve the community and better support the local economy. It will combine bus and rail termini with interfaces to private car, taxi, bus and cycle modes whilst acknowledging Metro bus and Belfast Rapid Transit.

A design team has been appointed comprising Arup and John McAslan + Partners, who have an extensive portfolio in the development and delivery of modern and highly-efficient transport infrastructure facilities including Kings Cross Station in London.

Translink and the Department for Regional Development are now inviting members of the public to have their say on proposals for ‘The Belfast Hub’.

A public consultation campaign, ‘Making History’, has been launched inviting views on The Belfast Hub, which aims to regenerate and develop a new city quarter - 'Station Quarter'.


Public information sessions will take place on Thursday 15th and Friday 16th January 2015, 8am - 6pm, in the Europa Buscentre where Translink representatives and The Hub’s appointed design team will share detail on options for the project and aspirations for bus and train facilities. An online submission form is also available at www.translink.co.uk/thehub.

As part of this consultation process, Translink is also seeking ‘station stories’ relating to individual experiences and memories of the existing bus and rail stations at the site, past and present. Since the project was announced, the project team has been on a journey of discovery uncovering a wealth of interesting ‘stories’ spanning the existence of both facilities and reflecting their rich history and impact on people’s lives. The public information sessions will feature just a few of these station stories to inspire more people to share their own nostalgic tales and help form a rich tapestry of reflection as The Hub project gains momentum.

This first phase of consultation will be open until 31st January 2015. For more information on the project click www.translink.co.uk/thehub.

Monday, 3 November 2014

Draft NI Bicycle Strategy Workshop / Consultation Event - Tuesday 4 November, 10am - 2pm

In November 2013 DRD Minister Danny Kennedy announced the establishment of a Cycling Unit to ensure that cycling provision is a key element in both transport strategy and delivery and to develop and promote the bicycle as an everyday mode of transport for everyone in Northern Ireland.


A draft Bicycle Strategy, spanning a 25 year horizon, has been developed to help make Northern Ireland a cycling society. As part of the consultation process, which is open until Friday 21st November, a workshop / consultation event is taking place in the Radisson Blu Hotel, Gasworks, Belfast on Tuesday 4th November, 10am - 2pm. It is a drop in type of event open to everyone to attend at any time between 10am and 2pm.

The following organisations will have stands at the event:.
  • PSNI - Security
  • DoE - Road Safety
  • Translink - Cycling in Harmony
  • Sustrans - Cycling proficiency taster (child and adult)
  • Road Hauliers Association - provision of an HGV for a practical demonstration on the day
  • Belfast City Council - Bike hire scheme
  • DRD’s Cycling Unit and Travelwise

A key element of the strategy is a commitment to work with other Government Departments, District Councils, the voluntary and private sectors and other interested parties to ensure that the Strategy is fully and optimally implemented.

A copy of the draft Cycling Strategy can be downloaded from the Department's website.

Printed copies are available on request by emailing: [email protected] or by phone on 028 9054 0179.

Monday, 6 October 2014

NI Changing Gear - Thursday 16 October, 9am - 4.30pm

The Department for Regional Development's Cycling Unit invite you to 'NI Changing Gear'. This one day event will feature international speakers exploring possibilities to transform Northern Ireland into a modern, vibrant, healthy cycling society. The opening address will be delivered by DRD Minister Danny Kennedy.

'Changing Gear' seeks to raise awareness of and encourage participation with the consultation process for the draft Bicycle Strategy for Northern Ireland.


NI Changing Gear

Date: Thursday 16 October
Time: 9am - 4.30pm
Venue: Assembly Buildings Conference Centre, The Spires, 2 - 10 Fisherwick Place, Belfast



Tuesday, 4 December 2012

York Street Interchange Panel Discussion | Thurs 6 Dec, 11.30am | Ramada Encore Hotel, Belfast

Forum for Alternative Belfast are hosting a Panel Discussion on Thursday 6th December at the Ramada Encore Hotel immediately following the Minister for Regional Developments announcement of the Preferred Option for the York Street Interchange.

The possible option for the York Street Interchange
to be announced Thursday 6th December.

To read about the York Street Interchange proposal and Forum for Alternative Belfast's vision for the project click here for part one of a report by Gary Potter and click here for part two.

"This is an urban design opportunity, not merely a roads project"
Forum for Alternative Belfast


The panel discussion this Thursday 6th December at 11.30am will include Rev Campbell Dixon (St Anne's Cathedral), Patricia Freedman (Cathedral Quarter Steering Group) and John Mc Corry (North Belfast Partnership Board). There will also be representation from the University of Ulster and the local neighbourhood groups and businesses closely affected by the decision.

Thursday, 22 November 2012

NI Executive agree to proceed with £98.5m Belfast Rapid Transit system

The Northern Ireland Executive has today endorsed the Department for Regional Development’s Outline Business Case for the Belfast Rapid Transit system. The document identifies the recommended network routes, procurement strategy and business model for Belfast Rapid Transit.

From www.drdni.gov.uk.

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

What I learned from the FAB Summer School 2012

Anna Skoura works with the Forum for Alternative Belfast and is a contributor to the PLACE Blog. She reports on the Forum's recent Summer School, "Re-stitching the city" held at Belfast City Hall from 13th-17th August.

The Forum for Alternative Belfast (FAB) 2012 Summer school took place two weeks ago (13-17 August) in the City Hall. The event was organised in collaboration with the East (EWPB) and West Belfast Partnership Boards (WBPB). The theme was “Re-stitching the city” and its primary goal was to address the very poor connection of the city centre with East and West Belfast. This is the fourth FAB Summer school, after 2009 which resulted to the "missing city map", 2010 which focused on North Belfast and 2011 on South Belfast. It followed the same structure: presentations for the first two days, public consultation on Tuesday and Wednesday evening and workshops during the rest of the week.
 
Photo by David Bunting
The organisers along with Belfast’s governmental and community bodies (Belfast City Council, East and West Belfast Partnership boards, Department for Social Development (DSD), Department of Environment (DOE), Department for regional Development (DRD)) presented their views and future projects related to the study areas.

Right from the start, it was interesting to see the distinctive approach that East and West Partnership representatives held during their opening presentations. Maurice Kinkead (CEO of EBPB) in an optimistic manner highlighted the positive impact of the Partnership’s recent activity in certain areas of East Belfast, while Geraldine McAteer (WBPB), very concerned, underlined West Belfast’s challenges and most urgent needs. Regarding the presentations given by the different Departments, the lack of a comprehensive vision for the city’s future and the lack of inter-departmental collaboration becomes evident. Sadly, clashing projects are sometimes the result.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Connecting Places Mini Series: Bicycling Belfast: Part 4: Beyond Commuting - Active Travel and Local Economies

In this series, Connecting Places, we explore the spaces, places and sustainable transport systems in Belfast and beyond, with an aim to generate critical debate on the design of our towns and cities.
Series curated by Aaron Coulter 

For previous posts from this series click here


Part 4: Beyond Commuting - Active Travel and Local Economies



Active Travel and Local Economies
(Credit: Aaron Coulter)
Naturally, a lot of focus throughout this week has been placed on bicycle access to Belfast City Centre. One reason for this is the fact that most of the statistical information gathered regards commuting and 19.5% of all trips taken in Northern Ireland, by all modes, are to get to work (TSNI, P23, 2008-2010).


However, a significant percentage of journeys are also made for shopping (20.1%) and Leisure (22.5%) (TSNI, P23, 2008-2010). Tackling these trips, as well as the more obvious commuting trips, could be a highly beneficial strategy for our ailing local centres in Belfast.


In this penultimate post of Bicycling Belfast, we will investigate the potential regenerative effect of improving levels of access for both the bicycle and pedestrian to our local centres.


Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Connecting Places Mini Series: Bicycling Belfast: Part 3: Belfast - a bicycle city in the making?

In this series, Connecting Places, we explore the spaces, places and sustainable transport systems in Belfast and beyond, with an aim to generate critical debate on the design of our towns and cities.
Series curated by Aaron Coulter 

For previous posts from this series click here

Part 3: Belfast - A cycling city in the making?
‘Belfast is a city for cyclists; it has all the advantages of cycling in Amsterdam but without the swarms of other bicycles. This Victorian city, steeped in culture and industrial heritage, is just waiting to be discovered by bike.' 
Source: Go to Belfast 

In part 3 of Bicycling Belfast we will be investigating the city’s current cycling infrastructure to find out how close to reality this statement is. Is Belfast really a city for cyclists, or is the comparison to Amsterdam just a bit too far fetched?

Belfast - a city for cyclists?
(Credit: Aaron Coulter)

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Connecting Places Mini Series: Bicycling Belfast: Part 2: An International Perspective

In this series, Connecting Places, we explore the spaces, places and sustainable transport systems in Belfast and beyond, with an aim to generate critical debate on the design of our towns and cities.
Series curated by Aaron Coulter

For previous posts from this series click here 

Part 2: An International Perspective

Broadly speaking, cycling cities can be split into two categories - ‘traditional’ cycling cities such as Copenhagen and Amsterdam and then those who have recently taken up the challenge to improve cycling conditions such as New York, London and Dublin (among many others). In this article we will be asking ‘What can Belfast learn from these cities?’

Copenhagen
(Credit: Blue Granola)

Monday, 27 February 2012

Connecting Places Mini Series: Bicycling Belfast: Part 1: Debunking the Myth

In this series, Connecting Places, we explore the spaces, places and sustainable transport systems in Belfast and beyond, with an aim to generate critical debate on the design of our towns and cities.
Series curated by Aaron Coulter

For background info on Bicycling Belfast click here.

Part 1: Debunking the Myth
“As a result of varying levels of congestion, topography and land-use, a blanket citywide approach to providing a cycle network is unlikely to be appropriate in Belfast.” 
Bicycling Belfast
(Credit: Aaron Coulter)
In a country where 65% of all trips taken are under 5 miles in distance, and in a city where up to 70% of inhabitants in some inner city areas do not have access to a car, can we really say that cycling should have no significant future in Belfast? What if we take an more analytical approach to the somewhat subjective claims put forward by DRD? Does Belfast have what it takes to become a ‘cycling city’, or are there too many obstacles in the way? 


Friday, 24 February 2012

Connecting Places Mini Series: Bicycling Belfast

In this series, Connecting Places, we explore the spaces, places and sustainable transport systems in Belfast and beyond, with an aim to generate critical debate on the design of our towns and cities.
Series curated by Aaron Coulter

Bicycling Belfast: Prelude



Cycling accounts for 0.6% of trips in NI
(Credit: Aaron Coulter)


In recent years there has been a renewed interest from major cities throughout the world in diversifying transportation choices in an effort to reduce dependancy on the private car and improve quality of life for their citizens. These initiatives are often characterised with a rebalancing of capital expenditure priorities in order to accommodate higher levels of spending on more sustainable forms of transport, including walking, cycling, and public transit schemes.

However, despite over a decade of policy initiatives aimed at reducing car dependency in Northern Ireland, transport budgets here are still overwhelmingly in favour of the private car. In 2010 the then Minister for Regional Development, Conor Murphy, not only dedicated 62% of the overall transport budget to the car, a total of £250,000,000, but also cut Belfast’s cycling budget by 98% to £8,000 (Belfast Telegraph). Given this, it is unsurprising that Belfast is currently rated the 3rd most congested city in the United Kingdom and ranks within the top ten most congested cities in Europe.

It is in within this context, and as part of an ongoing process of generating debate on sustainable transport in Northern Ireland through the Connecting Places series, that throughout next week a mini series titled ‘Bicycling Belfast’ will investigate the potential of increasing cycling’s modal share in the city.

Join us next week on the PLACE blog and follow the conversation with Aaron on Twitter #bicyclingbelfast

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

My PLACE: Stephen Pollock

In this series, we ask practitioners, experts and enthusiasts for their take on Northern Ireland's built environment - where are we now, how did we get here, and where are going?

Stephen Pollock, Roads Service, Department for Regional Development

Q. The DRD minister last week announced some major changes to traffic in central Belfast - is the car no longer the preferred mode of transport?

Last week Regional Development Minister Conor Murphy launched the consultation process for an ambitious Traffic Masterplan for Belfast city centre entitled ‘Belfast on the Move.’ This plan aims to substantially reduce traffic levels in the city centre and provide more road space for public transport, pedestrians and cyclists.

Around 30,000 vehicles per day travel through the city centre on the streets either side of City Hall. About 60% of this is through traffic, with no final destination in the city centre, causing needless congestion.

By providing the alternatives and promoting their use, we can encourage people to change how they travel. As they switch in significant enough numbers, congestion can be reduced and business, the economy and the environment will all benefit, and whilst we need to continue to provide real alternatives to the car, we also need people to choose to use them. We need behavioural change.

That said, we have to be pragmatic. There is a balance to be struck. Transport needs to be a catalyst for growth, not a constraint. We need to have the right infrastructure to allow people and goods to move, supporting our economies as we move out of recession.

The vision for Belfast is to achieve a city centre where access by public transport is given a much higher priority than at present and a street environment tailored to the needs of pedestrians rather than the private car.

***

Related: Further details on the proposals can be found on the Belfast On The Move website

Thursday, 30 September 2010

Belfast On The Move: new transport plans for Belfast

Image via Gryts on Flickr
News from DRD on their new Belfast on the Move proposals, which will seek "to develop a sustainable transport system to serve the central area. This will be focused on improved public transport services, better facilities for walking and cycling and a reduction in the dominance of travel by private car."

***

30 September 2010
Radical shake up for traffic in Belfast City Centre announced

Transport Minister Conor Murphy today launched the consultation process for an ambitious Traffic Masterplan for Belfast city centre entitled ‘Belfast on the Move’.

It aims to substantially reduce traffic levels in the city centre and provide more road space for public transport, pedestrians and cyclists.

The Minister said: “Belfast city centre has been transformed in recent years with major regeneration and retail redevelopments. A thriving city centre needs a transport system that not only encourages the use of more sustainable transport to reduce congestion but also enhances the environment for those who shop, visit, work and live in Belfast city centre. 

“Around 30,000 vehicles per day travel through the city centre on the streets either side of City Hall. About 60% of this is through traffic, with no final destination in the city centre causing needless congestion. This Traffic Masterplan for Belfast aims to substantially reduce those traffic levels and provide more road space for public transport, pedestrians and cyclists.

“My vision is to achieve a city centre where access by public transport is given a much higher priority, and to create a safe street environment tailored to the needs of pedestrians rather than the private car. Over 40% of households in Belfast do not have access to a private car and therefore rely on public transport. For the city centre to thrive, people need to be able to access goods and services swiftly and efficiently and public transport will play an increasingly important role in this as non essential traffic is redirected away from the central area. 

“The Belfast on the Move proposals will promote a safe, sustainable and efficient transport system within Belfast City Centre. ”

The proposed ‘Sustainable Transport Enabling Measures’ will require the redistribution of available road space in the city centre in favour of public transport, pedestrians and cyclists. Improvements will be made to the road network to the west of the central area to provide an alternative route for northbound traffic. The longer term objectives of the Masterplan are to remove through traffic from the streets around City Hall so that it can be linked directly to Donegall Place and to improve public transport by facilitating cross-city bus routes and future Rapid Transit routes.

The Masterplan sets out the phased proposals which include:

· Northbound through traffic re-routed from Great Victoria Street onto Hope Street and Durham Street with south bound traffic continuing to use Great Victoria Street. Grosvenor Road will become one-way westbound and College Square North one-way eastbound.

· The redistribution of existing road space will provide extensive bus priority measures for use by public transport, taxis and cyclists.

· The delivery of 20 new controlled pedestrian crossing points; about 2.6km of new bus lanes which will also accommodate cyclists and taxis; 340m of new dedicated service bays; 1km of new dedicated cycle lanes and over 40 additional dedicated disabled parking bays.

Lord Mayor, Councillor Pat Convery, welcomed the proposals and pointed out that Belfast City Council has recently published its own revised Transport Policy, providing a framework for it to lead by example and help shape transportation in the city in a sustainable, accessible and cost effective way for all those who live, visit and work in the city. 

He said: "The keymessage is to support and promote the development of a modern, safe, accessible and integrated transportation system to enhance the connectivity for Belfast and its wider regions. Our aim is to adopt a strong and public city leadership role in the promotion of sustainable transport for the city of Belfast.” 

Emphasising that this is the start of a process that will help to transform our city centre the Minister said: “The ‘Belfast on the Move’ Masterplan outlines the emerging proposals and identifies many of the difficult issues that will have to be considered in meeting this challenge. I would encourage anyone who visits, works or lives in Belfast City Centre to examine the Masterplan and put forward your views so that they can be fully considered in developing more detailed proposals.” 

Public consultation on the proposals will close on 30 November 2010. Further details are available by phoning 028 9025 3170 or at http://www.roadsni.gov.uk/index/belfast_on_the_move.htm

The public are invited to view the proposals at exhibitions to be held in Castlecourt Shopping Centre (Monday 4 - Wednesday 6 October 2010) and Victoria Square Shopping Centre (Thursday 7 - Friday 8 October 2010) and DRD offices at Clarence Court, 10-18 Adelaide St (Monday 11 - Friday 29 October 2010).

Notes to editors:

1. The Traffic Masterplan has been developed by DRD in conjunction with the Department for Social Development, Belfast City Council, Translink and other key stakeholders.

2. It is based on the proposals for the city centre outlined in the Belfast Metropolitan Transport Plan (BMTP) prepared by the Department for Regional Development and published in 2004. The BMTP proposed traffic management measures for the city centre with the objective of improving accessibility with the following four key concepts :
· A City Centre Ring creating an ‘urban boulevard’ to reduce its barrier effect between the core of the city centre and surrounding areas.
· A Civic Spine running through the core linking locations of key civic importance with reduced levels of general traffic and increased priority for public transport (centred on Wellington Place, Donegal Square North and Chichester St.).
· The Belfast Cross (based on the main central retail streets of Donegal Place/Royal Ave and High St/Castle St) with high levels of priority for pedestrians.
· High Accessibility Zones around public transport nodes in the city centre.

3. The key objectives of the Traffic Masterplan are to:
· Make it easier and safer to walk, particularly crossing streets.
· Reduce the level of traffic travelling through the central area.
· Reduce bus journey times and improve reliability.
· Reduce bus layover and dwell time.
· Facilitate future rapid transit proposals.
· Provide additional cycling facilities.
· Retain good levels of accessibilty for disabled users.
· Ensure reasonable provision for on street parking and servicing of shops and businesses.
· Provide further opportunities for public realm improvements and expansion of the pedestrian areas.

4. The Masterplan is closely linked to DSD’s ‘Streets Ahead’ public realm project and future proposals for a Rapid Transit system that will route through the city centre.

***