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IMAGE: An example of full-sized sharrow markings on Grangegorman Lower in Dublin City.

‘Sharrows’ stands for shared lane markings.

Internationally, sharrows are largely seen as pointless by most cycling campaigners. Sharrows are infamous for being used on high-speed or high-traffic roads or streets and doing little to change the behaviour of drivers.

In Ireland, the use of sharrows to date has been relatively limited and, based on feedback from readers, the logos are not well understood. The use of logos varies from low-traffic streets to busy roads.

Below are examples of smaller-sized sharrows in different contexts — on a shopping street, Pearse Street in Mullingar; the original sharrow on Grangegorman in Dublin City which filtered permeability; and now-defunct markings in a housing estate in Ballina, Co Mayo, which were on one side located between lines of (legally) parked cars.

Sharrows in the National Cycle Manual

The National Cycle Manual shows the use of sharrows on what it terms “Mixed/Shared Street”. The manual states that this treatment is for “Residential areas, access roads and streets, environmental traffic cells and shopping streets” which has “Little or no through traffic, except perhaps public transport”. The manual looks for the markings to be used in “low traffic speeds and volumes”.