Taxis in Bus Lanes – The Dragon that Refuses to Die

The Taxis in Bus Lanes Experiment is being consulted upon by the Department for Infrastructure. The closing date is 6 July, so get your skates on with your letters of objection to transportlegislationbranch@infrastructure-ni.gov.uk

Do more. Enlist the help of your political representatives:

Go to Write to Them and put in your postcode. This should list your councillors, MLAs and MP. Write to any or all of them.

Here is my effort. Please copy and paste, but do personalise it:

The Department for Infrastructure are currently consulting on the Experimental Traffic Control Scheme (Taxis in Bus Lanes) 2018.This scheme is designed to allow all taxis, bar Uber and party

I oppose this, on various grounds, but mainly:

that it reduces the available safe road space for cyclists;

that the decision to allow taxis in will reduce the Glider BRT buses punctuality and journey times;that the decision will reduce the roads’ capacity to move people, as sowonderfully illustrated by the recent Roadshare NI video, showing how one Glider bus replaces 70 cars on Belfast’s congested roads;

that the decision was taken by the Minister during the purdah prior to the most recent Assembly election, overturning Department policy, so it could not be challenged in the Assembly;

that the Minister did so after meeting taxi company representatives where no minutes were taken, or DfI officials attended. Highly questionable, I am sure you will agree.

Such DfI experiments have a habit of becoming permanent. Indeed, the consultation document gives no time scale at all.

The tidal parking restrictions in South Belfast started as a 6-month trial. And was made permanent after no objections were received from stakeholders, or rather, ignoring cyclists’ numerous objections.

On Stephen Nolan this week it was revealed the Department sees the consultation as a tick box exercise, and is determined to proceed regardless of the Consultation outcome. Indeed, a contract in relation to this “experiment” has already been awarded.

I ask you, please, as my elected representatives to add your voice to my objection to this sordid piece of sleight of hand and ensure that the proper procedure is followed and the Department for Infrastructure is held to account.

Thank you.

[Ends]

More here (Bikefast)

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