The Grand Canal Green Route Scheme extended from the 12th Lock Lucan to the 3rd Lock in Inchicore covering a distance of 8.5km. The scheme followed the existing towpath along the Grand Canal to form a linear Green Route facilitating pedestrian and cyclist users.
The Grand Canal is an ecological corridor which is home to various species of fish, mammals and birds. Whilst the provision of the cycle route was the primary objective of the scheme it was essential that this natural amenity be protected and where possible enhanced. Clifton Scannell Emerson Associates (CSEA) were assisted by an Environmental Specialist to assess the natural habitats along the proposed route.
The Environmental assessment highlighted the presence of bat life along the Canal and in particular outlined how the introduction of normal street lighting would have an adverse impact on how these mammals would feed. CSEA, in conjunction with Urbis Lighting, developed a lighting system, unique to Ireland, which was sensitive to the needs of bats. A lighting system with remote dimming capabilities was developed which provided a safe passage at night for the Green Route users and had minimal impact on the bat life.
CSEA worked closely, throughout the project, with The National Parks and Wildlife Service to ensure that all aspects of the build were undertaken in an environmentally responsible manner. Working methods were reviewed with the contractor during construction to ensure a clear understanding of the requirements was understood.
Prior to construction CSEA procured a tree survey along the route. The recommended mitigation measures outlined by the arborist were adhered to during construction. The scheme was reinforced with indigenous planting.