Written Answers. - Traffic Management.

Bernard J. Durkan

Ceist:

265 Mr. Durkan asked the Minister for Transport the extent to which he intends to liaise with local authorities with a view to the alleviation of traffic congestion in the various towns in North Kildare, with particular reference to Clane, Naas, Maynooth, Celbridge and Leixlip; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [3002/03]

Traffic management in the towns referred to by the Deputy is a matter for the local authorities concerned.

However, a local authority-DTO regional traffic management steering group has recently been established to provide a strong regional focus for traffic management in the greater Dublin area and to provide a forum to lead policy development and implementation of the traffic management elements of platform for change, for which local authorities have primary responsibility. The steering group is chaired by Dublin city's director of traffic. I support the establishment of this group and my Department is represented on it.

Funding is also provided by my Department for traffic management grants administered by the DTO. Funding for traffic management grants for 2003 remains at a high level with a €40 million provision in the Estimates. Traffic management grants fund measures such as quality bus corridors, the strategic cycle network, pedestrian routes, traffic signal control systems, travel and parking information systems and the development of local integrated land use and transport framework plans.

The determination of priorities for the allocation of grants from traffic management funding is carried out by the traffic management grants committee of the DTO and approved by the steering committee. I understand funding will be considered this year for local integrated land use and transport framework plans in a range of towns in the greater Dublin area, including towns in north Kildare.
On the more general issue of traffic congestion in urban areas, I would refer the Deputy to my reply today to Question No. 270.
Question No. 266 answered with Question No. 264.
Question No. 267 answered with Question No. 85.

Bernard J. Durkan

Ceist:

268 Mr. Durkan asked the Minister for Transport his plans to comply with EU transport directives with particular reference to traffic management in cities and the sharing of infrastructure; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [3006/03]

In so far as my Department is aware there are no EU directives relating to the matters referred to by the Deputy.

Bernard J. Durkan

Ceist:

269 Mr. Durkan asked the Minister for Transport his plans to alleviate traffic congestion in towns and villages throughout the country; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [3007/03]

Traffic management in towns and villages throughout the country is a matter in the first instance for the relevant local authorities. The major investment being undertaken in the national roads programme is assisting local authorities to improve management of traffic in towns and villages by removing through traffic. Over the past five years a substantial number of towns around the country including, for example, Nenagh, Portlaoise, Roscrea, Balbriggan, Cavan, Donegal, Arklow have been bypassed with obvious benefits. Major projects are either under way or well advanced in planning to bypass, for example, Kildare, Youghal, Ennis, Carrickmacross, Sligo and Monasterevin. The full implementation in the years ahead of the national roads programme provided for in the national development plan will remove through traffic from more than 60 more towns and villages.

Investment in national roads is being complemented by a sustained high level of investment in the non-national roads programme overseen by the Minister for Environment and Local Government. This programme includes a regional traffic management grants scheme focused on improving traffic management in towns throughout the country.

The better integration of land use and transport planning in the preparation of local development plans and the more detailed land use and transportation plans completed or being prepared by local authorities in Cork, Galway, Limerick and Waterford will also contribute to improving traffic flow in urban and village areas throughout the country.
Question No. 270 answered with Question No. 85.