Cycle Safety Measures

Printer-friendly version

image of signageDublin city Council is working on a number of measures and initiatives to improve the safety of all road users and in particular, vulnerable road users.

30km/h zones

The first 30km/h speed limits were implemented on Dublin streets in 2006. Included in this initial scheme were a specific section of the city centre plus a number of small residential areas. Prior to that, a “built-up area” speed limit of 50km/h was the default. The legislative basis by which a speed limit of 30km/h could be applied was established by the Road Traffic Act 2004, which empowered a county or city council to make bye-laws specifying a speed limit of 30km/h in respect of any particular public road. The primary goal of this provision was to match the maximum permitted speed with local road conditions and to improve road safety.

Since the introduction of these bye-laws, the number of streets in Dublin designated with a 30km/h speed limit has increased substantially. In December 2016, Dublin City Councillors approved plans to expand the 30km/h speed limit to almost all roads and streets (excluding arterial routes) across the city. This deployment, which includes 30km/h periodic speed limits at certain schools, is being implemented in phases and, to date, the lower speed limit has been introduced successfully into many areas close to the city centre. It is expected that three more phases will provide the full extent of the Dublin City Council area with a speed limit of 30km/h. For each phase, a new set of bye-laws and the associated public consultation are required; it is anticipated that all phases will be completed within the next three years.

Image of cycle lane in Dublin

Cycle Safe Intersections

As part of the Cycle safe intersection project, Dublin city is currently installing new radar units to detect cyclist as they approach a junction.  This will enable the required traffic phase to be called, e.g. increase the minimum green time for the traffic phase, and if there is a cyclist travelling through the stop line in the final stages of the green signal, to increase the all red timings for the traffic phase in order to ensure the cyclist is clear of the junction before opposing traffic is given a green light. As of end of 2019, there were thirteen test intersections with radar bicycle detection in operation.  A further five intersections are due to be added in the first half of 2020.


Protected cycle lanes and lane delineators

Following a trial conducted late 2018 on Lesson Street Lower, Dublin City Council began a programme of installing low level delineators at various locations around the city to provide a physical separation between cycle lanes and the adjacent traffic lanes. Initial installations were in locations where motorists commonly encroach on cycle lanes including, Leeson Street Lower, Ryders Row and Caple Street Upper, Custom House Quay and East Wall Road.  Feedback from initial trials led to alternate orcas being adapted to include a low level wand to increase visibility for pedestrians.  The new Wand ORCA’s have been installed on Leeson Street, the Contraflow Cycle Lane on Lombard Street and have also been installed on Bull Alley Street

Image of cycle lane in Dublin

Safety at Junctions

Since 2017, Dublin City Council has introduced three phases in different city areas.  The third phase also included a deployment of periodic speed limits at certain schools, at school drop off and collection times. The principle objective of assessing the appropriate speed limits for our roads and streets is to ensure that the set speed limits are as safe and appropriate as possible for vulnerable road users, including children, elderly and cyclists. Further expansion is proposed in the report submitted to council on 13th May 2019. The expansion will go to public consultation this summer with implementation scheduled for Q1 2020.

Protected Intersections  

For new cycle schemes the junction layout is being designed to allow for a protected intersection. This allows cyclist that wish to turn right to be safely stacked in order to make the movement in two stages.  If a cyclist wishes to turn right at a junction they travel straight through the junction ( for example northbound) and just before exiting the junction there will be a protected kerb stacking area which would allow the cyclist to change direct to eastbound. The cyclist then waits in this area until the relevant green signals appears for the eastbound movement. 

Other Interventions

In recent months other works that have added to improved safety include:

  • Re-surfacing works throughout the city that have improved safety for cyclists, drivers and pedestrians.
  • Installation of large cycle logos and new Advanced Stop Lines for cyclists in appropriate locations following resurfacing works.
  • Many other modifications which are designed and installed on a case by case basis as part of the neighbourhood and local traffic management measures.