Before politics I was a mobile app developer for many years. I have lots of nitpicky issues with the COVID Tracker app, but privacy isn’t one of them. I’ve downloaded it and I urge you to ask others to do the same. https://covidtracker.gov.ie
Our future is not self driving cars, but self propelled people.
Apple and Google have teamed together to offer infrastructure around contact tracing. This is exciting news. Scepticism is justified about tech companies but this is well thought out and privacy is designed in from the start.
An illustration of a coronavirus entering the lungs. The light purple proteins at the edge are the spikes that help the virus to attach to and enter other cells. Under a microscope the spikes of the virus look like a crown, hence the name coronavirus.
The word quarantine comes from the Venetian quarantena – during plague epidemics in the 14th century, ships were required to anchor outside Venice for 40 days before landing.
Tonight’s lockdown activity: a Skype table quiz with my sister’s friends in London. Parents and kids joining in too. Lots of fun.
How can we fix Limerick’s transport? Come along tonight to hear some brilliant people talk about how we can get Limerick moving for the benefit of all.
I’ve started my first ever MOOC: “Unraveling the Cycling City” by U of Amsterdam & Coursera. It’s free, the content is very accessible, I’d love it if anyone else fancied doing it to compare notes.
Enjoying a flight free Christmas visiting family. About to set off on the penultimate leg by train across England and Wales, with lots of books for company.
Limerick has areas that are even more deprived than NE inner city Dublin. Could we similarly mobilise politicians, public servants, business people and citizens to tackle disadvantage? If this model is working we should replicate it.
“We’ve built ourselves a public space that encodes the dominance of the adult machine-driver”
Depressing (and true) about Limerick but Eoin also gives us hope that we can fix it, if we want to.
The Mid-East’s difficulty could be the Mid-West’s opportunity. If we focus on compact growth in Limerick city centre, we can position ourselves as the country’s best option for sustainable growth.
Thought for the day: non-denominational education should not be restricted to kids whose parents own cars.
The centre of the University of Limerick’s campus.
I’m nine hours in to a twelve hour journey home from London to Limerick. It sounds gruelling but it has been lovely: acres of legroom, nice sights and a relaxing atmosphere. SailRail is such a great way to travel.
“Waiting to be ready is a strategy to fade into the oblivion. Instead, lean in, and be courageous.” A great manifesto for Limerick’s streets.
Trasna na dtonnta, dul soir, dul soir! If you’ve never done SailRail from Dublin to London I highly recommend it: very relaxing.
Thanks to Fintan for covering the first meeting of Limerick Pedestrian Network. Lots of work to do as we get set up, all are welcome to join. Support local journalism and buy a copy of the Leader to read more!
Centralisation not decentralisation! Lyric FM studios are 7min walk from O’Connell St. RTÉ Radio studios in Dublin are over an hour (or 30 mins on bus) from O’Connell St. We need to move more national services to the centre of regional cities, not move them out.
“I would expect to see large developments in Clare forcing larger changes in Limerick as well.” Oof.
Ugh. The proposed closure of Lyric FM studios isn’t because of rent. UL are planning a car-dependent town of 20k in the fields of Co. Clare. Any proposal to move institutions to their out-of-town campus should be viewed as hostile to our city.
Reminder! Monday evening, 2 Pery Square, 7pm. For those of us (all of us!) who use Limerick’s footpaths. A safer, more inclusive, healthier and more prosperous city is possible.
The health outcomes of active travel for 20 mins/day. If a new drug achieved this we’d spend billions on it. A relatively small investment in our neighbourhoods and streets to make walking and cycling safe would be transformative.
Finally here are two very calm-looking nurses from the Red Cross on O’Connell St in Dublin during the 1916 Easter Rising (RTÉ stills archives)
Both sides used bicycles of course – here’s the Royal Irish Constabulary on patrol with the 1st Battalion of the Essex Regiment in 1920 (Imperial War Museum)
Cumann na mBan also had a Cycle Corps, here they are on their way to Bodenstown (credit: Irish Military Archives)
The bicycle played an important role in the fight for Irish independence. Here is the Cycle Corps of the Irish Volunteers delivering guns landed at Howth by Erskine Childers on the Asgard in July 1914 (credit: National Museum)
I also wrote a blog post with some details about the Limerick Pedestrian Network meeting next Monday
Meeting to establish a steering group for a pedestrian network in Limerick next Monday. Please share if you can – especially outside of Twitter, thanks!
Hey do you like my new winter coa-
The hierarchy of vulnerability means responsib-
But for a relatively tiny investment in infra-
To achieve compact grow-
In other Euro-
I just want my family-
The Dock Road is the cycle route to/from the main depot for Limerick’s post office workers. There is space to make it better.
omg Google Street View now covers the rivers in Limerick https://goo.gl/maps/3FKMejDzi2P2vYnX6
Limerick’s streets could be better. We need both an active travel officer to improve cycle and walking facilities, but also an urban designer to reimagine streets as places for friendship, romance, play and commerce.
It’s really important to reduce emiss-
What about the health benefits of cycling and walk-
Wouldn’t it be nice to have less air poll-
A worrying number of children these days are obes-
Compact cities and villages are bett-
The deadline for feedback on Limerick Council’s corporate plan for the next 5 years is this evening. Here’s my submission.
Round 1: unanimous cross party support for 10% cycling funding at Limerick council transport strategic policy committee. Now to full council meeting for final vote.
Councillor Brian Leddin is proposing a motion today to allocate 10% of Limerick’s transport funding to cycling. I hope it gets cross-party support.
Excellent trolling by Limerick Council in their draft corporate plan
Three SUVs parked in a cycle lane.
It hasn’t been publicised much but there’s a new bus service from Limerick and UL to Newport, Rear Cross, and Thurles. 3 services a day, 7 days a week. Good to see new services for people commuting from rural areas.
Some people were asking me how I did my graph with commute times – I used the Apple Numbers app on my iPhone (free download). Here’s a video showing how I did it. I tapped the + button to add a graph, and the paintbrush button to edit the x axis. https://t.bibby.ie/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/numbers.mov
My commuting options, city centre to university, to start work at 9. Would love to hear what other people’s choices are.
For people interested in the plans for O’Connell St in Limerick, the planners report with responses to the 60+ submissions is now online (PDF)
I (respectfully) disagree with my friends in Sinn Féin and Social Democrats who wanted to reduce local property tax in Limerick. 80% of wealth in Ireland is property. It’s right that we have a small increase in tax to pay for better local services.
Decision on O’Connell St upgrade was deferred yesterday for two weeks. A few of us are meeting tonight to discuss possible co-operation and next steps. Drop me a line if you’d like to come along!
Happy 80th birthday Dr. Walsh, but your vision of urban sprawl for Limerick is a vision for last century, not this one. The whole concept of a new university town in Clare is performative nonsense and should be stopped.
From 1982: RTÉ archive footage showing the “experimental” closing of Grafton St. to traffic. Dubliners at the time were reassured that if it didn’t work, it’d be reversed after a year. Nearly 40 years later, could we follow suit in Limerick? https://www.rte.ie/archives/2017/1123/922278-grafton-street-traffic-free/
The saddest thing about Limerick city centre is that it has no proper toy shop.
What happens when you concentrate development on the outskirts of a city and treat your city centre as a thoroughfare for private cars? Bad planning doesn’t just harm social inclusion, it harms economic activity too. https://www.irishtimes.com/business/commercial-property/limerick-has-3-5-times-more-vacant-office-space-than-galway-1.4007594?mode=amp
Sextons on Henry St has Cards Against Humanity and Franciscan Well beers on tap. Pizza’s pretty good too.
Enough. Too many pedestrians and cyclists are getting injured and killed in Limerick. Let’s say no to the roads engineers who want ring roads and car throughput: the more we build, the more (and the faster) the cars will come. Prioritise people over cars.
Workers from Limerick Civic Trust maintain the canal path I use to get to work. They do a fantastic job and it makes my commute safer and more enjoyable.
Had a close encounter tonight in the car park beside my flat.
Good news for those of us crying out for better public transport and cycling facilities in Limerick. And some bad news.
And Eoin in Limerick has been writing some brilliant articles about cycling, urbanism, and how to design people-centred cities and neighbourhoods. I’m always grateful when there’s another post of his to read.
Reading long-form articles that people have posted on their own websites makes me so happy. Paul from Kerry has been posting some fantastic and thought provoking pieces about masculinity recently – they’re worth a read.
A fascinating look at how people use public spaces. Lots of really useful lessons on how to design our cities for humans.
Hear, hear: ‘But Fianna Fail councillor Abul Kalam Azad Talukder said: “Students are not outsiders. They are our family. Limerick has a good name as a student city and we need to make them feel welcome.”’
From a post I wrote last year: it is possible to close Limerick’s O’Connell St to through traffic *and* speed up our bus services by providing bus lanes for all services through the city centre.
Two letters to the editor of the Limerick Leader, November 1964.
This is not perfect but still to be welcomed – the road rises to meet the footpath, not the other way round, and the pedestrian priority is reinforced by the different material. So much better for pedestrians. More of this please!
In last year’s Limerick Council budget there was €1m for a cycle route to Mary I and €400m for a (unneeded) bridge at Park road. This year there’s no budget for the cycle route and €1.4m for the bridge. What’s going on?
Depressing thought of the day: Limerick city and county emits roughly the same amount of greenhouse gases as Liberia, population 4.5 million (source: Wikipedia, assuming per capita emissions in Limerick are the same as rest of country)
I’m hoping someone can help me…I’m trying to look at obnoxious interest rates charged by insurance companies on monthly instalments. 15% deposit and 9 equal instalments at an interest rate of 6.715%. APR is quoted at 17.04%. How is the APR calculated from those numbers?
Limerick’s traffic problem is a school traffic problem. Many parents want their kids to cycle or walk to school if they can be safe. We need to ditch plans for expensive ring roads and connect all schools with high quality bike lanes that your seven year-old would feel safe on.
Allowing Clare County Council and the University of Limerick to build a new town at the edge of the city would be damaging for the city, damaging for the region and damaging for the country.
Important questions: “To what extent is living in a surveillance-saturated world compatible with pluralism and democracy? What are the consequences of raising a generation of children whose every action feeds into a corporate database?”
I love this: “Our town exists in a fog of mystery and enigmatic strangeness, and nothing that happens outside city boundaries should have any bearing on how we govern or exist.“
Though you have left me, I’m not yet alone:
For what you were befriends the firelit room;
And what you said remains & is my own
To make a living gladness of my gloom
Your Green team. For a stronger Limerick and a stronger Europe.
You could line a room with reports written over the years saying what a bad thing sprawl has been for Limerick. We know the solution: concentrate development in the city centre. Instead we are planning even more sprawl, and it makes me sad.
This is the loveliest of things: a podcast about the story of repealing the 8th amendment in Limerick: produced by, narrated by and featuring the loveliest of people. Subscribe now and get episodes as they come in.
Ask your work colleagues if they are registered! If they weren’t born in Ireland they might think they’re not eligible. Five of my colleagues aren’t registered, so we’re heading into town tomorrow for a team lunch after getting forms signed in the Garda station.
If you live in Ireland since last Sept you can vote in local elections. Search for RFA2 form, print and get signed at Garda station. Limerick are accepting email scans of the form, you just have to email it yourself to email@example.com. Deadline Tuesday 5pm.
Hey Limerick friends, I’m looking for a place to live on my own in Limerick City Centre. If anyone knows of anywhere to rent I’d be very grateful! firstname.lastname@example.org or Twitter DMs are open.
With this week’s Brexit chaos I was reminded of the Mary Poppins-inspired solution to Brexit that I came up with after the referendum. I also think our combined flag would be awesome.
Facebook are a deeply creepy company, which is why I deleted my account last year. Yet I still use WhatsApp, and I wonder if it’s ethical to keep using a Facebook-owned app in the face of all the creepiness that the company still engages in.
The young people who marched yesterday demanding climate action deserve more than platitudes in response. Here are some of my thoughts on what we can do in Limerick.
Politicians supporting the climate strike while also supporting motorway construction, building houses and schools designed around the car, and a climate-damaging agriculture policy are hypocritical. Our children are striking for action, not platitudes, and we’re failing them.
Heading to this tonight. Really looking forward to it.
The rear light on my black Brompton is faulty, so I’ve borrowed my wife’s Turkish green mode for the daily commute. It’s a very pretty colour, shows the dirt a bit more though.
I’m taking a twitter break for a while, and I’m going to turn off auto-posting my micro blog to twitter. You can still find me at https://t.bibby.ie or on micro.blog: http://micro.blog/thomasbibby
The Greens and Labour have organised a meeting next Monday in Limerick to listen to the experiences of people in the Direct Provision system. We’re grateful to the people who have agreed to speak and I hope lots of people will come to Ormston House to listen and show solidarity.
Straw poll of two people taking the bus to work on UL campus this morning, both journeys of ~7km: 1 hour 20 mins (1 bus); 1 hour 50 mins (2 buses). Slower than walking pace.
Consequences of designing a university campus around the private car: a bus stuck in a 1.5km tailback to the gates of the University of Limerick.
Rant: walking, cycling and taking public transport in Limerick is universally terrible but easily fixable if politicians/officials/we cared. Instead we’re stuck in the 70’s, trying to put cars everywhere. This makes our city so much more crappy than it needs to be.
I should add better public transport is also important for social inclusion as well as attracting overpaid nerds.
On the bus to Castletroy this morning. I’ve spotted two other software developers on the bus. We’re crawling along due to traffic. Limerick needs to sort out public transport and stop fetishising the private car if we want to attract professionals in high demand to the city.
My father-in-law, Joe Cahill, passed away this morning. He was a lovely kind and generous man and he will be missed. Wake in Ovens Co. Cork (Eircode P12 Y239) tomorrow at 6pm and funeral mass at noon Weds in Macroom church.