Dublin should follow the example of Paris, Berlin, London, Amsterdam and Zurich and embrace the idea of a Mayor for the night life of the city, according to General Manager for Ireland at mytaxi, Alan Fox.
Following another extremely busy weekend for the e-hailing app that saw huge night-time demand for taxis across the city, Fox said a ‘Night Mayor’ would help to develop Dublin’s tourism potential and join up the dots to make sure transport, services and crowds could all be handled in a more co-ordinated and safer way outside daytime hours.
“Dublin is one of the most popular cities in Europe for tourists and party goers, with the night-time economy a big part of its success and appeal,” Fox said. “But there is a real need to make Dublin’s services, in particular around transport, work better after-hours. mytaxi has been carrying record amounts of passengers since the start of December, with a huge volume of these at night. Demand, however, continues to outstrip supply at peak hours. Appointing a Night Mayor to develop improved, joined-up services has the potential to offer better and safer transport options to the public and tourists at night time, allowing them to enjoy our capital city’s unique vibrancy and culture even more.”
Night Mayors are not a new concept, with Paris, Berlin, Milan, Amsterdam and Zurich exploring the idea. Their role is to manage, co-ordinate and improve relations between night businesses, residents, police and city councils. Dublin does not currently have a directly elected city mayor.
The mytaxi chief added: “We need to approach this side of the economy with a fresh perspective. Dublin competes for tourism with many cities, yet Ireland lags behind other European cities in its approach to developing businesses and facilitating public needs outside of daytime hours. For example, we need to look at our club opening hours which are much the same as those for late bars, meaning two sets of people emerge onto the streets at the same time causing many issues for transport, taxi and security services. A Night Mayor could look deeper into these issues, perhaps introducing later opening hours for some venues and in some locations, and advance strategies that deal with the unique challenges and opportunities facing the night-time economy in Dublin because, right now, there’s a disconnect between service provision and customer needs.”
mytaxi’s top tips for the busy festive period include urging passengers to plan their journeys more than usual, to travel off-peak as much as possible, and to prebook or hail their mytaxi driver a bit earlier than normal to beat the taxi rush.