Development of the City Cycle Network

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Image of cycle lane at Samuel Beckett Bridge Dublin

Dublin City Council is committed to making cycling safer and more accessible for all citizens. Dublin has adopted a vision led integrated approach to increase cycling which involves planning for cyclists in the design of our city from a strategic to site level.  Incremental improvements to strategic cycleways have much improved the cycling environment and further enhancements are planned.

Since the publication of the Greater Dublin Area Cycle Network Plan in 2013, Dublin City Council has been planning the delivery of a number of high quality, segregated cycle routes.  In that time, 2km of the S2S, 3.4km of the Tolka Valley Greenway, 0.4km of the Dodder Greenway and 0.7km of the Liffey Cycle Route (City Quay) have been completed.  A further 60km are under various stages of development with the second phase of the 7km Royal Canal Greenway already under construction.  Dublin City Council is committed to delivering a network of cycling routes comprising in total of approximately 270km of high quality primary secondary and greenway routes.

Cycle Schemes

Royal Canal Greenway

The Royal Canal runs from Dublin to Longford, a total of 146 kilometres.  The Dublin city section of the route when complete, will provide a high quality walking and cycling route of over 7km linking Ashtown to the North Quays at the Samuel Beckett Bridge.  The Royal Canal Greenway is part of the National Cycle Network.

Map of Royal Canal Greenway

Current status:

  • Phase 1: Guild St. to Upper Sheriff St., 0.5 Km – Completed in 2009. 
  • Phase 2: Upper Sheriff St. to North Strand, 0.7km – Scheduled completion, April 2020
  • Phase 3: North Strand to Phibsboro 2.1km. Contractor procurement to commence in quarter 1, 2020 with completion scheduled for quarter 2, 2022.
  • Phase 4: Cross Guns Bridge, Phibsboro to Longford Bridge, Ashtown: 4.3Km.  Design for works involving the completion of the Broome Bridge bus & cycle contra-flow is scheduled for completion at the end of June 2019.  The construction of these works is anticipated for quarter 4, 2019.  Detailed design on the towpath mainline started in quarter 2, 2019 with contractor procurement anticipated to start in quarter 3, 2019.  Option selection for the Maynooth railway line underpass is ongoing.

Image of Phase 3, Binns Bridge to Cross Guns Bridge

Grand Canal Greenway

The Grand Canal runs from Dublin to Offaly– a total of 117 kilometres.  The section of the Grand Canal within the Dublin City Council Administrative Area runs between Blackhorse Bridge at the Naas Road through Drimnagh, Dolphins Barn, Harold’s Cross, Portobello, Ranelagh and into the Grand Canal Docks.  The Grand Canal Greenway is part of the National Cycle Network.

The first Dublin section of the Grand Canal Greenway, 3.6km, between Portobello and Grand Canal Docks was officially opened in March 2012. Dublin City Council has made considerable progress in developing the preliminary design of the 4km section between Blackhorse Bridge and Portobello.  The project interacts with other strategic infrastructure projects and will be proceeding to public consultation on completion of its integration with the proposed core bus corridor projects.

Dodder Greenway

Image of Dodder Greenway cycle laneThe Dodder Greenway project will provide a high quality walking and cycling route along the River Dodder as it meanders over 28 kilometres from its source in the Dublin Mountains at Bohernabreena to the mouth of the River Liffey.  Three local authorities DCC, DLRCC and SDCC are cooperating to construct the greenway with Dublin City Council developing the downstream section of the route between Orwell Park and the mouth of the River Liffey, which is approximately 7.5 kilometres in length.  The selection of an emerging preferred route was completed in quarter 2, 2019.  The National Transport Authority has recently formed a Cycle Design Office. This unit will be taking over the Preliminary Design of the project starting in Q2 of 2020.

Tolka Valley Cycle Route

Image of Tolka Valley Cycle RouteThe re-development of Tolka Valley Park included a 3.4 km off-road cycle route from Finglas Road to River Road/Ashtown Road Junction. The cycleway required extensive site preparation and re-grading, the construction of two bridges, public lighting, road crossings and five new entrances. The development of the Park and cycle route linked together new communities with established neighbourhoods on the opposite side of the river to promote social inclusion and improve access to areas of employment and commuter railways.  A further 0.4km of the greenway, traversing through Fairview Park will be constructed in 2020. 

East Coast Trail

The East Coast Trail, identified at the Sutton to Sandycove (S2S) in the National Cycle policy Framework, extends from Arklow in the south to Drogheda in the north. Dublin City Council has responsibility for 14 kilometres of the Trail from the Merrion Gates, Sandymount in the south to the junction of Clontarf Road/Kilbarrack Road in the north.  Extensive works were completed on 2 kilometres of the route in 2017 as part of the Dollymount Promenade & Flood Protection.  Dublin Bay is a Special Areas Conservation & Special Protection Areas under the EU Habitats & Birds directives.

Image of East Coast Trail

The remaining sections, both north and south of the Liffey, are in the concept development phase.

Point Junction Improvement Scheme

The length of the entire scheme is circa 390m extending from the Tom Clarke bridge (formerly East Link bridge) along the East Wall Road to its junction with Sheriff St. Upper in Dublin 1. The scheme consists of; the upgrade to the existing Point Roundabout junction to a three-arm signalised junction with a left-turn slip lane from North Wall Quay to East Wall Road, improved pedestrian facilities at junctions and the provision of a toucan crossing on East Wall road; provision of a two-way segregated cycle facility linking the proposed Point Pedestrian/Cycle Bridge to the proposed East Coast Trail East Wall Road Improvement scheme (S2S); construction of a 4th arm on the existing signalised junction of the East Wall Road and Sheriff Street Upper which will provide a new access to Dublin Port and therefore allow the existing left in and left out arrangement on East Wall Road to Dublin Port to be decommissioned. A Part 8 application will be lodged in early 2020.

The Liffey Cycle Route

Image of the Liffey Cycle Route

The Liffey Cycle Route is an important objective of Dublin City Council and the National Transport Authority. The NTA presented the emerging preferred design option to Dublin City Council in March 2019 and a non-statutory public consultation on the scheme was conducted in May and June 2019.  A Consultation Summary Report will be issued in Q4 2019.  Dublin City Council is currently carrying out internal departmental consultation to inform the consultancy services brief; an appointment for design services will be made in Q1 2020.  More information can be found in the Consultation Hub section of the website;

Clontarf to City Centre

The 2.7km Clontarf to City Centre scheme will be the first scheme that integrates high quality cycle tracks and continuous bus priority along the same corridor in Dublin City. The scheme is in the detailed design stage and construction procurement will commence in Q1 2020.

Clonskeagh to City Centre

The proposed Sandyford (Clonskeagh) to City Centre Cycle Route is 9km long. This route aims to be a family friendly route which also caters for commuter cyclists. The scheme splits into two routes when it reaches the City Centre, one going through the Grafton Street Quarter and the other through Camden Street to Dame Street.  The option selection and concept design are scheduled for completion in quarter 3, 2019.

Fitzwilliam Cycle Route

The Fitzwilliam Cycle Route scheme comprises of a one-way continuous parking-protected cycle lane on both sides of the road extending from Leeson Street to Mount Street Lower along Fitzwilliam Place, Fitzwilliam Street and Merrion Square East, a distance of 1km. The scheme will link to the Grand Canal Premium Cycle Route at Leeson Street. The Fitzwilliam Cycle Route Scheme will also include improved pedestrian facilities; and, critically, the upgrade and redesign of the junctions along the route to improve conditions for cyclists and pedestrians.  The scheme will also provide public realm upgrades to the island at the Adelaide Road / Leeson Street junction.

Dublin City Council carried out a non-statutory public consultation from 13th September 2018 to 12th October 2018 on the Fitzwilliam Cycle Route scheme, and the drawings and summary report linked to this consultation is available from the Consultation Hub Section of the Dublin City Council website. Comments and observations on the scheme were considered and have informed the detail design stage of the scheme.

Construction is scheduled to commence at the end of Quarter 2, 2020.


Image of Fitzwilliam Cycle Route

Contra-flow cycle lanes

Contra-flow cycle lanes allow cyclists to go in either direction of the flow of traffic sharing the same road space with vehicles going in one direction only.

There are a number of existing contra-flow cycle lanes in the city, the most prominent being the ones on Andrews Lane and Ryders Row/Capel Street. Both these contraflows have been protected by orcas and flexible wands in recent times.

Image of Orca protected Contra Flow Route with flow protected Parking lane

Dublin City Council has recently installed  a contra-flow cycle lane on Lombard Street East protected by rubber lane seperators  which links Pearse Street with the South Campshires cycle way. As part of the works a parking-protected with flow cycle lane was also installed. It is intended to introduce further improvements to the cycling facilities at the junction of Lombard Street East and Townsend Street and these works should begin once the Covid 19 restrictions are lifted. In addition future contra-flows are planned for Moss Street, Drury Street and William Street South.

Image of Orca protected Contra Flow Route