January 27, 2022 6 min read
In this latest See.Sense report we are looking at the capital of Ireland, Dublin. Dublin not only has lots of See.Sense users providing data insights, but it is also a city that we have previously worked closely with through the SynchroniCity project.
We were pleased to see plenty of discussion surrounding our previous See.Sense report on Belfast, and you can read that report here if you haven’t already.
The analysis undertaken for this series is based on data from the See.Sense Report feature, which enables cyclists to report the location of any problems they encounter during their ride through the See.Sense app. By using the ride survey feature on the app, users can report close passes, collisions, potholes, obstructions and other issues by dropping a pin on the map. Users can also report areas in which infrastructure improvements are needed, with the app providing users with the ability to advise on a range of improvements, including additional parking, road widening and more.
We have received over 70 reports from our See.Sense community in Dublin since the beginning of 2020, and in this report we will be examining these reports to provide an overview of cycling in the city. As was the case in Belfast, the most common issue that cyclists in Dublin encounter is close passes, with 44.4% of all reports highlighting this issue. A close pass is where a passing vehicle fails to leave a safe distance between itself and the cyclist, which is widely considered to be a minimum of 1.5 metres.
Several close passes have been reported on the Malahide Road. This road has a shared bus and cycle lane which appears to be causing issues for cyclists, particularly around the junction near the Clontarf golf and bowling club. One report has described being “passed closely on two occasions” by a bus along the road.
Two incidents of close passes have been reported on the Ballymount road. This business and industrial area hosts high numbers of HGVs, vans and other large vehicles, with the area flagged by a user as particularly problematic due to vehicles failing to provide cyclists with sufficient space. A close pass by two trucks on this road was described by the user as a “regular occurrence.” This problem is exacerbated by the fact that there is no cycle infrastructure currently present on the road.
The junction that connects Merrion Road with Strand Road has been reported as particularly dangerous for cyclists, with “vehicles merging at an awkward angle for visibility.” As a result there have been incidents of close passes where cars fail to see cyclists on the shared bus and cycle lane.
Cycle infrastructure is present along the Naas road, however there have been reports that cars are “constantly in the cycle lane.”
We received a report about Howth Road being frequently covered in fallen wet leaves. The report states, “a very large amount of fallen leaves were trapped on the cycle track between the footpath and the line of plastic wands making it almost impossible to see the road. These are very dangerous conditions in such a narrow channel.”
A cyclist reported a collision on Chesterfield Ave which reportedly happened by a car driver that was “trying to squeeze into a space that was not there.” We hope this cyclist is OK, and wish to thank this cyclist for making this report.
A cyclist has reported that they were injured as a result of a pothole at the traffic lights on Clonskeagh Road. “In summer of 2020 I fell off my bike here at the traffic lights and sustained a handlebar injury to my lower abdomen that was quite deep and required 2 layers of stitches. The cause of the accident was a deep pothole in the bike lane right at that junction. That pothole is still there (as of December 2021), and no attempts have been made to repair that piece of road.” The report also highlights that the bike lane along the Clonskeagh Road is in generally poor condition, with a "very poor surface quality and poor delineation between cycle path and road.” Again, we hope that this cyclist is now OK, and would like to thank them for submitting a report.
Several infrastructure requests in Dublin have been submitted through the See.Sense app. The most common request is for separation, with 44% of all submissions requesting physical separation between the road and cycle lane. There have also been several requests for road widening and additional traffic calming. In general, it appears that the narrow nature of many of Dublin’s roads is resulting in problems, particularly in regards to close passes and cars encroaching on cycle lanes.
In addition to being reported for close passes, the Malahide Road has also received infrastructure requests for greater separation. Whilst there is a cycle lane present, it is misused and suffers from “constant blocking” by vehicles. A user has highlighted that this is particularly problematic during school terms, with drivers “pulling out into cycling and bus traffic.”
There is no public cycle parking available in and around the East Point business park, which is problematic as it discourages individuals from cycling to their place of work. In this request, the user has also highlighted that there is a path along the waterfront around the business park that could be a scenic cycle route.
The cycle lane that is present along this section of road has received reports about potholes. A report made in April 2021 has highlighted the “poor quality of cycling lanes along Cunningham Road and George’s Quay,” with “potholes everywhere in both directions.”
The cycle lane on Stillorgan Park Road has been highlighted as being too narrow, particularly as it is a shared path between cyclists and pedestrians. This results in blockages and conflict, thereby limiting its effectiveness. Additionally, the cycling lane has “not been renovated for a long time in some places, making it really dangerous due to cracks and bumps.”
Problems with the traffic light timing at this set of lights on Roebuck Road have been raised, with unusually large delays occurring between signal changes. A report suggests that “when the cycle light goes green for cyclists exiting Nutgrove Park cyclists should also get a green light to turn right into Wynnsward drive. This would speed up the lights.”
A request has been made for road widening to be undertaken on Donore Avenue, as issues have arisen on this road due to parked cars. This can cause the road to become too narrow to accommodate both vehicles and cyclists.
The traffic lanes at Davitt Road are “not wide enough,” making close pass incidents likely here. A request has been made for the road here to be widened in order to provide extra room for cyclists.
The road surface quality of the Royal Canal at Tolka Valley Park has been described as “terrible.” A user has stated, “this is an important cycle lane and leisure area used by dozens of people daily. Even more these days when public transport is to be avoided. For the most part all the way from Blanchardstown to Phibsborough it’s a great path. But the conditions of this section are just terrible. The condition of the tarmac is poor - full of potholes and loose gravel.”
Thank you to all members of the See.Sense community who have submitted a See.Sense report. We hope that the reports featured here have been able to shed light on some of the issues that can be encountered when cycling in Dublin. If you have personally encountered any of the issues that have been raised in this report, then please let us know!
Up next we will be examining cycling in London. If you’re a cyclist in the city, make sure to use the See.Sense report feature to highlight any issues that you experience when cycling.
If you want to make a report of your own, simply download the free See.Sense app - no purchase of See.Sense light is required. You can drop a pin highlighting close passes, collisions, obstructions and more using our Ride Survey feature. If you have ideas about how your city can improve cycling, you can also make suggestions using our Infrastructure Request feature.
By using See.Sense report, you’re joining a community of cyclists who are helping make cycling safer and smarter, and enabling city and transport planners to improve cycle infrastructure. To learn more, visit See.Sense Report.
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