Mayorstone, Limerick: From Roads to Streets

I live in Mayorstone in Limerick City:

Dare I hypothesise that those in charge of designing this public space think of it as a road*.

* Their title is “roads engineer”, after all.

Cities do indeed need roads to let people move from one area to another.

A road is where the law codifies your obligation to not get in the way of people operating machines.

A road is where you tell a dead child “I’m sorry, I didn’t see you.”

A road is where you should not park your car, so you park it up on the footpath instead:


If Mayorstone is currently a network of roads…

…then what could Mayorstone be if it was a network of streets, instead? What would be different?

Here’s what a street can look like:

Zwolle

A street is where life happens. A street is a public space where humans move and interact.

A street can make room for a tree.

A street is where a parent may think of bringing their kid out for a walk.

A street is where these young humans are given permission to Be:

In Limerick, perhaps we need to empower* our roads engineers with the permission to be street and community engineers instead.

(I had originally written: “to arm”)

It may be that “roads engineering plus empathy equals street engineering”.