Bicycle traffic jumps 22.5% in Dublin city centre in one year

— Cycling accounts for 27% of traffic at Dame St / Georges St junction

People on bicycles account for just over 10% of roadway traffic in Dublin city centre, according to a survey conducted earlier this year.'s reader-funded journalism won't survive without your help. With over 762,000 views so-far this year, it's not just "avid cyclists" who read this website, but, if you want it to keep going, more support is needed from readers like you. Now, back to the article...

The figures come from yearly counts of traffic in central Dublin — mainly along the quays — which this year were carried out from 7 am to 7 pm on either Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday during the period May 29 to June 18 2014.

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Percentage of cyclists in central Dublin

While the numbers of people cycling in the city centre has been on the rise for the last five years, the stark increase this year appears to be linked with the recent DublinBikes expansion. Last year, at the time of the traffic count, average daily DublinBikes rentals were just above 6,000 per day. With the expansion only partly finished for this year’s central traffic count, average daily rentals had shot up to nearly 10,600 per day.

DublinBikes have October 6 was reported recently as the busiest day of the year so far for DublinBikes, with 15,441 rentals.

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A report on the traffic count compiled by Dublin City Council said: “Eight locations, all located at the western end of the survey area, showed a decrease in the number of cyclists from 2013 to 2014. However this decrease was more than compensated for by large increases at locations (nos.15-20) in the city centre between O’Connell Bridge and Memorial Bridge. There was an overall increase of 22.5% in the total number of cyclists counted at all locations in 2014 compared to 2013.”

There was no reason given for the notable decrease in number of people cycling past some of the western points. But DublinBikes stations near these counting points, including the stations around Heuston Station and at Collins Barracks Museum, had yet to open.

The council added: “The location with the highest percentage of cyclists in 2013 was Dame Street / Georges Street where cyclists made up 27.0% of all traffic. This location has had the highest percentage of cyclists in every year from 2007 to 2014.”

Overall, the percentage of cyclists increased from 7.9 % in 2013 to 10.1% in 2014. The overall number of all vehicles decreased by 3.7 % in 2014 compared to 2013.

The data from the 2014 version of the Dublin City Council’s main traffic count — the Canal Cordon Count, which counts traffic entering the city centre — is still being complied and has yet to be published.

The Rosie Hackett Bridge (marked 61-62, on the map above) was opened to traffic last May but was not included in this year’s survey.

MORE: Dublin City canal cordon traffic counts data from 1997-2014

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  1. May/June seems a little late to me as it wouldn’t necessarily capture the movement of undergraduate students who may be between exams at that time.

    I’m guessing that the drop-off in bicycle numbers at the western junctions is due to the growing use of the Luas tracks as the de facto east-west cycle route.


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