Liffey Cycle Route delayed again as traffic count finds twice as many bikes than cars

— Two people cycling were seriously injured in recent weeks on Dublin’s quays.

— Campaigners urge people who cycle to ride this Sunday in support of the Liffey Cycle Route.

There are twice as many people cycling as there are people in cars on the quays in Dublin at the morning rush hour, a video survey by the Dublin Cycling Campaign has found.

The news comes as the National Transport Authority confirmed to this website that a report looking at options for a segregated cycle route was again delayed.

It also follows two collisions in less than two weeks were people cycling were left with serious injuries — in one case a man in his 60s had the bones in his foot crushed in a collision with a coach driver and, on Monday last, another man was left with injuries which were described by Gardai as serious but not life threatening after a collision with the driver of a van with a trailer.

The Dublin Cycling Campaign found that when combined, cars (25%), taxis (8%), commercial vehicles (7%) and motorcycle (3%) amount to 42% of vehicles counted on Ormond Quay at Capel Street, but bicycles outnumber all of these and amount to 49% of vehicles counted on the quays at that junction.

The group highlighted how the 1,126 bicycles outnumbered private cars by a ratio of almost 2:1.

Buses account for the last 9% of vehicles, but carry the most people per vehicle — up to and above 100 people per bus at any one time.

A previous traffic count by Dublin City Council on the nearby Ellis Quay already confirmed that bicycles outnumbering cars and that there was a rapid increase in cycling between 2014 and 2016. Since then, the space for cars has been reduced along the central quays to allow for bus and Luas priority, but cycle lanes are still non-continuous and not segregated, with cycling is often mixed with buses.

A project to build a segregated cycle route on the quays — called the Liffey Cycle Route — is so-far in pre-planning for nearly 7 years.

As was reported in April, the project was delayed once more because the National Transport Authority (NTA) said that it wants to be as thorough as it can possibly be before a definitive decision is made.

The NTA were due to have received a report from its consultant over a week ago, on June 22, but yesterday a spokesman said that the “report is close to completion, but still requires some work.”

NTA previously said they would consult with city council officials before making the report public.

The route is seen as key as it links together a large number of residential areas, work places, transport hubs, tourist sites, and planned and existing segregated cycle routes. Linking together segregated cycle routes into a network is seen as key to further increasing the number of people cycling.

Kieran Ryan, spokesman for the Dublin Cycling Campaign, said: “The NTA has now missed two deadlines for producing the consultant’s report on the future of the Liffey Cycle Route; one in April and another in June. These further delays to a project which began in 2011, and has yet to produce a final design for the cycle route, seriously undermine our faith in the NTA’s ability to bring this vital piece of cycling infrastructure to fruition.”

Ryan said: “Bicycles account for half of all vehicles on the north quays in the morning rush hour. Twice as many people cycle the North Quays during rush hour as drive private cars.”

He said the method used to count vehicles was to film the road for the time period between 8am-9.15am, and then review the footage to determine the total traffic count and the breakdown of modes. The quays at the junction at Capel Street includes two general lanes and one bus lane.

“The traffic survey reinforces the urgent need for a safe, segregated cycle route along the Liffey Quays,” said Ryan.

He urged people who cycle in Dublin to join in a planned cycle of the quays next Sunday to demand a safe, segregated cycle route along the Liffey Quays.

He added: “If people want to support safe, segregated cycling in Dublin City Centre, then they should come along on Sunday.”

The Liffey Cycle protest cycle is on this Sunday July 8 at 11am, stating from Grand Canal Square. The event page can be found at Facebook.

IMAGES: Graphics and photo provided by the Dublin Cycling Campaign

1 Comment

  1. Tristan Dunne July 6, 2018 at 1:53 pm

    Satisfying the current and growing cycle space demand on the quays points towards a “cycle superhighway” type solution and would surely rule out some of the lower capacity cycle lane solutions that were previously presented as options.

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