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Irish Cycle Facility of the Week

November 24, 2014:




This is an urban section of the Great Western Greenway where it crosses the busy N5 road coming into Westport town (since this photograph was taken a toucan crossing and guardrail has been put in place).

In the background is an old railway underpass, where the old railway line which the greenway partly follows would have went under that road.


The above image shows a view towards the other side of the bridge. As you can see — it’s hardly visible. A large amount of infill has been built up since the railway was running along this section. The railway would have been running level around this point with the tracks underneath the bridge.

The images may not show it well, but the gradients are far too steep for a greenway, never mind a section which makes up part of Westport’s urban cycling network.

Given the extra, sharp speed of cycling downhill and the slow nature of cycling up hill, it makes the shared nature of the route even more questionable given the increased risk of conflict and no notable extra width.

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The above image is closer to the top of the hill put in place after the railway closed — the top of this hill is about the same hight as the road over the railway bridge.

While it may not have been possible to get the route as level as the railway which went before it, the gradients left are extreme.

Location:  N5 Westport
Local body/authority: Mayo County Council
Street View: Shows before the greenway upgraded the path before it

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Cian Ginty


  1. Normally when you come to a sudden steep Hill like this one ,the tendency is to wobble from side to side going down it especially if you are a stranger to the region. Then you have to stop suddenly to avoid Cyclists coming up it and also Pedestrians,also those on the Path below.

    There needs to be a widening of the lane and more leveling of the Hill to make it less steep.


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