A lot of the recent commentary and feedback on this subject has related to the area of cyclist safety on what is a very busy route with a lot of competition for limited road space.
Having cycled the route myself there is no doubt but that what is in situ @ the moment is a hodge-podge solution that has gradually evolved over many years, creating all sorts of conflict points between pedestrians, cyclists, buses and cars/vans/trucks.
With this in mind I took the time with Dublin City Council engineers to set out in detail the safety benefits of the proposed scheme (the one to be voted on by Dublin City Council this Monday evening):
(1) For the first time ever there will be a clearly defined route with full markings for cyclists rather than having to mount & come off some footpaths (i.e. what happens on the edge of Fairview Park @ the moment)
(2) That route will be inside the bus lane and fully separate to it rather than being shared with buses as is currently the case; in most places the route will also be raised 25mm for segregation. Cycling lanes will be 1.75m in width and thus will facilitate cyclists overtaking each other within the lane
(3) There will be a buffer zone (0.75m as I understand it) between cyclists and parked cars with a view to keeping cyclists clear of those car drivers who open their doors without checking for cyclists first
(4) Physical protection measures will be installed at key junctions to protect cyclists where traffic is turning left – these were not on the revised drawings but the engineers confirmed that they will be installed.
There was also some discussion on leaving the buses in their lanes while passengers board/alight (which would yield more space to run cycle lanes on the inside of bus stops) but the NTA policy appears to favour taking buses out of the lanes temporarily to keep the bus-lane itself moving as freely as possible.
In summary while it ain’t perfection I would argue that there are major safety benefits for cyclists in what is proposed over what is there at the moment. I have included 4 slides below from Dublin City Council which covers some of the above in schematic form.
Finally, I am deeply disappointed that www.irishcycle.com refused to publish the above information as an opinion piece from me; no one should retain a monopoly on “purity of thought” whether it relates to cycling infrastructure or any other matter; the more public discussion and debate we have, the better.