Swords is an incredible town with a strong community and is a great place to live.
But sprawling development has led to car dependendancy and it is holding the town back.
The Green Party in Swords have made a substantial submission to the Sustainable Swords project with a view to bringing the amenities and the design in the town into the 21st Century.
Here are the key highlights
- Highest possible ambition on active travel. Learning the lessons from the Netherlands and look to implement Low Traffic Neighbourhoods. Create 12 mobility hubs around the periphery of the town and four central hubs around the town centre – to encourage active travel.
- Swords Citizens Assembly. Bring the people with you by running a Swords Citizens Assembly to help explain and get buy-in for best-practice.
- Invest in Main St. Consider full pedestrianisation of the centre of the town, including laneways. Support this by a circular traffic system around the centre. If traffic through Main St is necessary it should be limited to public transport. Provide mobility hubs around the centre to protect accessibility for those who need it. Redevelop the river front, in partnership with land owners, and locate a work hub there. Create an open air event space and a distinct restaurant quarter on Main St.
- Major redevelopment of the Ward River Valley. Including cycling walking connections through the park, boardwalk greenway and viewing point at Knocksedan Bridge, protected nature zone, outdoor recreation and conservation hub, highwires, mountain bike trails, bridleways, cycling and walking bridge with viewing point connecting Brackenstown and Rivervalley, community and alternative sports centre, swimming pool and outdoor lido, destination playground and new entrance with visitor centre and mobility hub.
- Circular economy hub. Support repair businesses as well as a new toy and tool library in a cluster near the town centre.
While the plan is ambitious, the planned population increase for Swords and the current deficit of facilities means that substantial investment should be made now to meet those objectives. It’s critical that we secure URDF funding for major investment for Swords town centre while it remains available under the current National Development Plan.