People in wheelchairs may soon be able to use cycle lanes in Dublin if a plan by the city’s lord mayor Brendan Carr goes ahead.
Mr Carr said that such a measure could be necessary due to the number of obstacles that wheelchair users have to avoid while using the pavement.
“Currently, we are aware of the extent to which people with disabilities have to go to circumnavigate obstructions on the pavements,” Mr Carr told the European Cyclists’ Federation summit in Arnheim, reports the Independent.
“I think they would be better off using the cycle lanes and would like to ask what the people of Dublin think about this.”
Mr Carr’s plan was cautiously welcomed by Paul Corcoran, chair of the Dublin Cycling Campaign, who said that he would wouldn’t have a problem with the idea, but that more also needed to be done about why wheelchair users might need to use cycle lanes in the first place.
“Disabled people certainly have the right to use them, like everyone else. I already see this happen occasionally, particularly when people are in mobility scooters. Sometimes the path is too narrow or the kerb is simply too high.
“Personally I wouldn’t have a problem with it, though it does create the potential for conflict.
“I think around the city user space in general needs to be improved, for cyclists, pedestrians and people suffering from physical or visual impairments.
“The question has to be asked why they need to use the cycle lanes. Lots of paths around the city are too narrow, aren’t maintained or whatever else. But until that is fixed I would have no problem with this as a solution in the interim.”
Mr Carr said that the plan could be put to the city in a vote, but didn’t put a timescale on such a move.