How BusConnects plans to change the N3 from Castleknock to Blancherdstown

COMMENT & ANALYSIS | LONG READ: This the forth part in a series covering the details of how the draft plans for BusConnects changes streets and how things could be done better on the Blanchardstown route.

This article covers from Castleknock to Blancherdstown at Snugborough Road.

This legend shows the meaning of the key different colours and lines on the drawings:

The previous section of cycle route ends poorly in Castleknock before the M50 and BusConnects does not look at even basic quality improvements of the cycle route from this point to the junction before the Blanchardstown Shopping Centre — a distance of about 2.3km.

Here’s our map showing an outline of this section with the bus lanes on N3 in blue and the cycle route in yellow — the thing, no improvements whatsoever are planned along the cycle route.

This is only a part of the N3 / M50 interchange — much of it is north of this image or shaded out:

This image speaks a lot to what many observers have said about BusConnects needing to improve the pedestrian environment to attract more people to buses. To the south of here is housing and Blancherstown village and to the north is

 

It takes five or six crossings for a bus user to get to the city bound bus stop on the core route buses heading towards the city centre. This is non-motorway but these are effectively part of the M50 interchange — in the US, UK and Ireland in such places we put down footpaths and crossings as if this is a normal road.

More progressive countries (yes, like the Netherlands) grade segregate people walking and cycling from traffic at motorway speeds — with attractive over or underpasses and grass or other buffers are provided between footpaths and the carriageway:

At the next road underpass, at least there is plans for new bus stops and access to them from each side:

Here’s the cross-section:


Note: This is road widening. BusConnects is not taking a lane from most of the N3:

Here’s the overpass and access again:

The bus lanes leave the N3 at the Snugborough Road interchange:

This is the Snugborough Road interchange between the N3 and the Snugborough Road which is one of the main roads connecting north and south sections of Dublin 15.

The design of this is was already put out to public at the start of 2017 and IrishCycle.com covered it at the time — there’s little point repeating that now but the junction redesign is poor for walking and cycling.

To be continued…

 

I am editor of IrishCycle.com and have reported on and commented on cycling in Ireland for over a decade. My background is in journalism -- I have a BA in Journalism from DCU and HDip in Print Journalism from BCFE. I wrote about cycling for national newspapers, and then started CyclingInDublin.com for overflow stories. Later the website was re-branded to reflect a more national focus.

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