Orbital Signage Updating Scheme

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Dublin City Council is working to make the city a more liveable, sustainable place where people are happy to work, live and visit.   A key element of this is to enhance how people travel to, move within and around the heart of the City.

In order to facilitate sustainable travel, our priority in the city centre is for walking, cycling and the use of public transport.   To that effect, we are currently refreshing and simplifying the signage on the Inner and Outer Orbital Routes across the city. In addition, over 100 unnecessary signs that are currently cluttering our streets will be removed.

As part of the ongoing development of an integrated transport network for the City, the updated Inner and Outer Orbital signage will facilitate the diversion of vehicular traffic from the core city centre area, giving motorists routing alternatives. Cars that are entering the city centre will be able to find a car park more quickly and efficiently, thus helping to reduce congestion across the city.

The new signage is also required to reflect the many positive changes and enhancements to the city’s transportation network that have been implemented in the last few years, including:

  • The opening of the Dublin Port Tunnel
  • The ban on 5 axle Heavy Goods Vehicles in the city centre
  • The provision of bus priority measures including additional Bus Lanes on the North and South Quays
  • The completion of Luas Cross City
  • The opening of several new bridges over the Liffey – the Samuel Beckett Bridge, the Rosie Hackett Bridge and the Seán O’Casey Bridge
  • An expanding cycling and pedestrian network
  • O’Connell Street urban realm improvements   

The new signs that are directing to car parks follow a zonal approach, with the parking zones North, East, South, and West in the city centre.

The new signage will begin to appear in the city in the coming days and it will take approximately three weeks to remove the old ones and replace them with the new signs.

Questions & Answers

Why are the new signs needed?

Dublin City Council is working to make the city a more liveable, sustainable place where people are happy to work, live and visit.   A key element of this is to enhance how people travel to, move within and around the City core.

In order to facilitate sustainable travel, our priority in the city centre core is for walking, cycling and the use of public transport.   To that effect, we are currently refreshing and simplifying the signage on the Inner and Outer Orbital Routes across the city. In addition, over 100 unnecessary parking signs that are currently cluttering our streets will be removed.

As part of the ongoing development of an integrated transport network for the City, the updated Inner and Outer Orbital signage will facilitate the diversion of vehicular traffic from the core city centre area, giving motorists routing alternatives. Cars that are entering the city centre will be able to find a car park more quickly and efficiently, thus helping to reduce congestion across the city.

The new signage is also required to reflect the many positive changes and enhancements to the city’s transportation network that have been implemented in the last few years, including:

  • The opening of the Dublin Port Tunnel
  • The ban on 5 axle Heavy Goods Vehicles in the city centre
  • The provision of bus priority measures including additional Bus Lanes on the North and South Quays
  • The completion of Luas Cross City
  • The opening of several new bridges over the Liffey – the Samuel Beckett Bridge, the Rosie Hackett Bridge and the Seán O’Casey Bridge
  • An expanding cycling and pedestrian network
  • O’Connell Street urban realm improvements   

Are the new signs better than the old ones?

The new signs have been simplified, are less coded than the original signage and therefore are more intuitive and easier to understand. In addition, over 100 unnecessary signs that are currently cluttering our streets will be removed.

I always use my smart phone or SatNav to navigate so, why have signs?

For those familiar with the city or those using SatNav or a smart phone, the signage provides additional navigation prompts as well as route confirmation. Technology is used by many to navigate around the city, but many others rely on more traditional navigation methods such as maps and directional signage.

SIGN FACE ELEMENTS

What type of information is provided on the signs?

When going along the Outer Orbital Route or leaving the city centre, the signs will show the M50, villages and regional routes outside of the Outer Orbital Route, as well as directions towards car parking. Dublin Port is signed on signs on the eastern side of the Outer Orbital Route and Dublin Airport is signed on signs on the northern side of the Outer Orbital Route.

On the Inner Orbital Route signs, the nearest parking zone is shown when travelling towards the centre, and the M50 is signed when leaving the city centre.

Within the Inner Orbital Route, signage will lead motorists to the nearest car park.

What do the colours blue and purple mean?

As it is with the existing signage, the new Orbital Route signs with the blue header are used for the Inner Orbital Route, and signs with the purple header for the Outer Orbital Route. Additionally, signs without header are used within the Inner Orbital Route.

What are the Orbital Routes?

The Outer Orbital Route roughly encircles the centre of Dublin generally using the North and South Circular Roads. The purpose of this route is to provide a route for motorists which facilitates travelling across the city without the need to travel through the city centre. The routes also facilitate access to and between areas immediately outside the city centre.

The Inner Orbital Route roughly encircles the core of Dublin city centre and is the recommended route when driving through or around the core city centre area, or when driving to a car park in the city centre.

Will the routes of the Orbital Routes change?

Since the Orbital Routes were originally established, a number of new transportation projects have impacted on the routing. The following changes are introduced on the new signage:

•          The East Link has been removed from the Outer Orbital Route and the Samuel Beckett Bridge signed instead

•          On the Inner Orbital Route, changes were made to the route around Kildare Street/Dawson Street due to Luas Cross City.

What do the junction number mean?

There are 79 junctions defined on the Orbital Routes:

-           47 junctions on the Inner Orbital Route, numbered between 1-47, on blue signs; and

-           30 junctions on the Outer Orbital Route, numbered between 51-80, on purple signs.

The junctions are numbered in a clockwise manner, starting in the East of the city. The junction numbers help to identify junctions and locations on the Inner and Outer Orbital

What’s that oval shaped symbol on the signs?

The symbol with the two rings indicates that you are on one of the Orbital Routes.

What does the PS, PW, PE, PN stand for?

Any signs that indicate parking follow a zonal approach. The parking zones North and South are both within the Inner Orbital Route, divided by the River Liffey, whereas the zones East and West are outside of the Inner Orbital Route.

Each car park is assigned to a zone on approach to the city centre and only information relating to the nearest zones are displayed. Upon reaching a zone, the information presented on the signs expands to more relevant and localised directional information. Individual destinations are only signed once the specific zone is reached.

The main advantages of the zoning approach include reducing the number of signs required, and therefore there is less signage clutter. The use of zones instead of individual signing of destinations is quite a common approach used in many cities.

Why are there M50 signs in the city centre – the M50 seems to be a long way away?

Drivers will be directed out of the city centre via M50 signs and when they reach the Inner Orbital Route they can make a further decision which direction to follow. On reaching the Outer Orbital Route, more specific destinations and villages outside of the city centre will be provided for example Donnybrook or Cabra. Regional Routes, the Port and Airport are signed as well.

Outside of the Outer Orbital Route, existing directional signage with more specific destinations will assist in getting to a destination

OTHER QUESTIONS

Does the proposal take account of other potential changes to traffic management e.g. BusConnects?

There are a number of city transportation projects currently in discussion, the most widely known being Bus Connects, Metro Link and College Green Plaza. However, this signage scheme was designed with flexibility in mind and minimises the number of possible changes when new projects are introduced.

How long will it take for the signage to be changed?

It will take approximately three weeks to remove the old signs and replace them with the new signs.

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