Belfast council votes against keeping cabs out of bus lanes
The Green Party motion has been defeated by opposition from DUP and Sinn Fein.
Originally proposed in February last year, its discussion was delayed by the pandemic. Had the motion been passed, it would have continued to allow a ban on private taxis in bus lanes across the city.
The author of the motion Councillor Aine Groogan stated, "To allow 8,000 new vehicles into a bus lane is completely the wrong way to go. It’s not about penalising private car users, it’s about encouraging other forms of transport, particularly buses. Bus priority is one of the main things to encourage people onto them.”
Councilor Ronan McLaughlin of Sinn Fein stated in response, “Not putting a taxi in a bus lane is not going to avert the climate crisis. This is simply a drop in the ocean, and that drop in the ocean is affecting the livelihoods of working class people. That’s somewhere I can’t go.”
The motion, although supported by the Alliance Party and the SDLP, received merely 7 votes, whereas the oppositional Sinn Fein and the DUP received 10 votes, and I am inclined to agree with the latter.