Traffic is to be completely banned from the Grafton Street corner of Dublin’s St Stephen’s Green when a public plaza is created as part of works for the Metro North light-rail system. The Railway Procurement Agency is currently in discussions with Dublin City Council about creating the plaza at the top of the city’s premier shopping street, which could see the whole area transformed into a pedestrian-only area. And yesterday it emerged the Fusilier’s Arch at the entrance to St Stephen’s Green will have be removed for four years during construction works. The statue of Daniel O’Connell on the capital’s main thoroughfare will also be temporarily removed during the construction of underground stations. No decision has been made as to where to relocate the iconic statue during the four years of building work, but it is planned to re-instate it once the stations are completed.
And it has emerged that more than 40 mature trees will have to be removed from St Stephen’s Green to accommodate an underground station, work on which is expected to start next year. The RPA’s chief architect, Jim Quinlan, last night outlined the vision for St Stephen’s Green and the city centre after works are complete and Metro North is up and running.