How government works

A strange tale of the closure of the pathway beside the Waterfront Hall, a daft diversion pathway users, and the efficient response of government when a big problem was identified.


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April 2014

Belfast City Council cuts off the National Cycle Network in Belfast city centre to allow construction of the new Waterfront Conference Centre – pathway users are given a lengthy diversion across the river.


April 2014

Campaigners point out the stupid aspects of the plan, engage politicians to raise questions, suggest a signalled crossing be installed at the four-lane Queen’s Bridge to improve the diversion route.


June 2014

With impressive speed, the Department for Regional Development’s executive agency Roads Service (now Transport NI) kicks into action almost immediately, listing the toucan crossing on its programmed actions.


April 2016

The upgraded Waterfront Hall opens and the riverside pathway re-opens to the public.


April 2016 (same week)

The toucan crossing at Queen’s Bridge is installed, operational for just 3 days before the Waterfront diversion is no longer in operation.

Facepalms all round! An appropriately daft way for the whole #Shamblefront episode to conclude. Vive la #CyclingRevolution!


2 Replies to “How government works”

  1. andyboal says:

    Well, actually, I’d’ve said the crossing on the Queen’s Bridge is needed regardless. It would definitely have been better to have had it sooner, but we are where we are.

    I think I only used that route once – it was simply inconvenient to go that way rather than round Lanyon Place and the front of the Waterfront Hall.

    • nigreenways says:

      Completely agree Andy. As mentioned in the article back in April 2014, this was a golden opportunity to leverage the disruption caused by the Waterfront construction to provide a lasting improvement to the parallel riverside pathway. Hopefully the ridiculous timing is just an echo of a mindset and lack of priority for active travel projects which has been gradually changing within Transport NI. Hopefully..

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