More on dangerous junction at industrial estate

The developer’s consultants have demonstrated that they don’t know how to design for cyclists.  I attach email correspondence which gives the picture.

From: David
Healy / Daithí Ó hÉalaithe []
Sent: 29 May 2006 21:46
To: (
Subject: RE: RE: design of grange road/industrial estate junction.


 Thank you for the copy
of the developers’ consultant’s response.

 In relation to
responses 1 and 2, Mr. Deegan is entirely wrong in his suggestion of how a
cyclist should safely use the road.  I would refer you to Cyclecraft by John Franklin published by
the Stationery Office in the UK and recommended reading for the National
Cyclist Training Standard in UK. (
 Alternatively, I would refer you to Oregon Department of Transportation’s
Bicyclist Manual 2006 at pages 6 and 7 (

If Mr. Deegan has any
source for his view of safe road use by cyclists, I would be interested to know
of it.)  


This is a very
important point.  An understanding of the sources of risk for cyclists and of
how cyclists can use the road to best reduce the risk of collision is essential
if road design is to cater for safe use by cyclists.  Nobody should be designing
roads which cyclists use and especially not designing specifically for cyclists
without this understanding.  Many of the flaws in road design for cyclists in
Dublin probably
come from such basic misunderstanding.

In relation to the
width of the lane in question, I went out yesterday to measure the lanes
northbound entering the junction on the industrial estate road.  From the kerb,
there is a cycle lane (red tarmac) of 1.10m, then 0.10m broken white line, then
1.7m (black tarmac) to the next lane marking.  I have put a photograph of a
truck using this lane on my website.  I did not measure the lane eastbound into
the junction but it is similar.  The reference to 3.25m is mistaken in every

In relation to the
width of the hard shoulder going up and over the bridge (to be replaced by a
narrower cycle lane), Mr. Deegan states “It is not a traffic
lane; nor was it designed as a cycle lane, although it serves the purpose well
in this instance.”  Whether it is or is not a traffic lane is possibly a legal
question. However, if one checks the design for the bridge which was built in
the 1990s one will find that the design documents from Dublin Corporation
describe this area as “hard shoulder/cycle lane”.  While there may in law be no
such thing as a “combined hard shoulder/cycle lane”, it would appear that this
lane was designed as a
cycle lane.  As you know, it is used as such.

I would be interested
to know what are the “minimum industry standards” referred to by Mr. Deegan.
1.5m is not “well above” the standard in the Irish manual. It is the minimum.
 What standards does Fingal use?  

Cycle lanes often have
the effect of encouraging passing of cyclists closer than would otherwise be the
case.  See

The logical consequence
of this knowledge is that where a cycle lane is being provided on a major road
with very high levels of Heavy Goods Vehicles, a wide cycle lane is essential. 
The current situation with the hard shoulder which is effectively a wide cycle
lane is proposed to be made objectively worse for cyclists in the new design.
 The difference for a user between the current cycle lane marked near the
junction and the hard shoulder marked further along the road is significant.

I would welcome an
opportunity to cycle this area with you and/or with Mr. Deegan to ensure that
these points are understood.



Councillor David

Green Party/Comhaontas

Howth ward / Dublin North

01 8324087

54, Páirc Éabhóra, Beann

54, Evora Park, Howth



From: Sean McGrath
Sent: 19 May 2006 16:36
Subject: FW: RE: design of grange
road/industrial estate junction.


Dear Cllr


I forward the
consultants response FYI.


We are considering
changing the layout of the junction to have only two general traffic lanes on
the approach from the M50 direction. This will give additional space to allow
for full width traffic and cycle lanes in both directions without compromise.
There may be some loss in capacity of the junction, but, given the improved
comfort for all, it may be worthwhile.





From: Martin
Deegan []
Sent: 11 May 2006 13:52
To: Sean McGrath
Subject: [Possible Spam] RE: design of
grange road/industrial estate junction.



Thank you for the
attached.  As a regular cyclist and traffic engineer, I have pleasure in
responding to Cllr Healy’s points in order as


  1. Providing formal cycle facilities
    highlights the presence and needs of cyclists to motorized road users.  The left
    turning conflict is apparent in this situation at every junction with or without
    cycle tracks, and is dependent on a measure of good judgment and courtesy
    between vulnerable road users and motorists.  The safest place for the cyclist
    in this situation is to stay within the appointed cycle track, and not in the
    middle of the traffic lane where the risk rear end shunt type conflict with fast
    moving vehicles would undoubtedly be greater.


  1. Referencing point 1 above, the
    safest place for cyclists is within the allocated cycle lane.  This risk is
    apparent within all urban road environments which have cycle tracks


  1. The traffic lanes have been
    widened to a minimum of 3.25 metres. This is sufficient for a HGV to pass a
    cyclist without entering the cycle lane or the adjacent right turning traffic


With reference to the
Cllr’s final paragraph:


In the event of an emergency or breakdown, a motorist can pull into the
hard shoulder to get out of the flow of traffic and obtain an element of safety.
It is not a traffic lane; nor was it designed as a cycle lane, although it
serves the purpose well in this instance.  Thought must be given to the safety
of all road users, in this instance 1.5 metres has been allocated for the cycle
lane, and 4.0 metres for the adjacent traffic lane, both dimensions provide a
good level of service for both motorists and cyclists, and are well above
minimum industry standards.





J.B.Barry &
Partners Ltd









+353 (0)1 403 3600

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Sean McGrath
Sent: 08 May 2006 10:49
To: Martin
Subject: FW: design of grange
road/industrial estate junction.




Comments from Cllr
Healy FYI.





From: Mary
Sent: 08 May 2006 10:30
To: Sean
Subject: FW: [Possible Spam] design of
grange road/industrial estate junction.



Did you get this



From: David Healy
/ Daithí Ó hÉalaithe []
Sent: 02 May 2006 14:09
Peter Caulfield; Mary
Subject: [Possible
Spam] design of grange road/industrial estate junction.



Thank you for showing us
the proposed redesign of the junction last week.


In relation to the
design, I have the following comments.


I welcome the removal of
one of the 3 eastbound lanes coming into the junction, to give more room for
westbound traffic.


I am concerned at the
design including cycle lanes within an existing lane. By the design shown, it is
not possible for a car or truck to use this lane without travelling in the cycle
lane.  This seems to be the case northbound entering the junction on the
industrial estate road and eastbound entering the junction on grange road.  It
seems to me that these could have 3 undesirable


1.       They are
likely to encourage cyclists to stay left at the junction.  In fact, safe
cycling requires that a cyclist travelling straight on should not stay to the
left of the lane as to do so would risk a car or truck turning left across them.
 Safe cyclists will occupy the centre of the straight ahead

2.       They may
encourage cyclists to travel up on the inside of trucks, which puts cyclists in
a particularly dangerous position.

3.       They may
encourage motor vehicles to pass cyclists without moving fully into the adjacent


If there is a good reason
for this design I would like to hear of it.


I am also concerned at
the width of the cycle lane over the bridge.  The previous situation was a good
wide hard shoulder.  The new situation should not lead to any reduction in
safety for cyclists.  There is a tendency for a motor vehicle user to assume
that it is safe to pass a cyclist on a cycle lane as long as each road user
remains in their lane.  This, of course, is not the case, but it is a
consequence of cycle lane design.  Narrow cycle lanes (especially if associated
with other narrow lanes and markings such as central hatching) can encourage
motor vehicle users to pass closer than they would otherwise have done.   In
this case, we are talking about a road with high levels of HGVs, making safe
passing even more important for cyclists’ safety and cyclists’ perceptions of
safety. The width of the lane was not marked on the plan.  However, there is a
tendency for road engineers to incorrectly assume that a width of 1.5m is
standard.  In this case, a width of at least 2m would be


Is mise, le







Councillor David

Green Party/Comhaontas

Howth ward / Dublin North


54, Páirc Éabhóra, Beann

54, Evora Park, Howth