Wednesday, 8 May 2019

Questions (1288, 1315)

Catherine Martin

Question:

1288. Deputy Catherine Martin asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if he has undertaken a review of the national cycling policy framework; and if so, if he will provide a copy of same. [18905/19]

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Catherine Martin

Question:

1315. Deputy Catherine Martin asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the work undertaken to meet objective 4 under the national cycling policy framework; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [19577/19]

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Written answers (Question to Transport)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 1288 and 1315 together.

As the Deputy may be aware, my Department has committed to undertake a review of public transport policy “to ensure services are sustainable into the future and are meeting the needs of a modern economy”. This is in line with a commitment given in the Programme for a Partnership Government.

This review is a significant and substantial resource commitment and my Department has substantially completed the research and analysis required to inform the proposed period of public consultation which I expect to launch shortly.

The review is premised on the concept of integrated and sustainable transport, in keeping with the objectives of Smarter Travel – A Sustainable Transport Future which formed the overarching policy backdrop to the development of the National Cycling Policy Framework 2009-2020. As part of the overall review therefore, analysis of the National Cycling Policy Framework, its implementation and impact is being conducted and will be published as part of the overall review.

However, in advance of that publication I can state that in relation to Objective 4, the Deputy will be aware of the long-standing Green Schools programme which is funded by my Department and which works with schools in promoting and fostering a cycling culture among young people.

In addition the Deputy will welcome the development of a new national cycle training standard - Cycle Right - which I was delighted to launch in 2017. Since that launch I have been able to increase the funding made available by my Department to the programme which has facilitated an extension of the training programme to more children each year. It is my intention that the programme will continue to increase over the next few years to maximise its coverage among the primary school cohort of children.

The issue of low speeds around school environs is a matter for local authorities, provided for in law and referenced in my Department's "Guidelines for Setting and Managing Speed Limits in Ireland (March 2015)". With regard to safe cycling routes in the vicinity of schools I have substantially increased the amount of funding available to the National Transport Authority to support local authorities in their development of safe cycling infrastructure.

As stated, I expect to initiate a public consultation process in the coming months and I look forward to engaging with the public on this important work.