At the beginning of December an official press release for the funding of three cross-border greenway projects in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland was announced that will open up new sustainable cross border travel routes for both cyclists and pedestrians. The EU’s INTERREG VA Programme has offered approximately €23.27 million.This will fund the development of greenways in three different areas including one joining Carlingford to Newry, a route from Monaghan into Armagh along the Ulster Canal and three different routes in the North West, one from Strabane to Lifford and two from Derry/ Londonderry into Donegal. One of these routes is good news for the further development of EuroVelo 1 in Ireland. Read article
Cyclist.ie was disappointed with the near absence of actions to decarbonise transport in Minister Denis Naughten’s first Annual Transition Statement on climate action. Read press release
The Royal Canal Greenway, currently being constructed along the the Royal Canal across the northern boundary of the county has been described as “mediocre” by local lobbying group Maynooth Cycling Campaign.
“This was a lost opportunity to provide a good quality greenway as opposed to a mediocre one – one which will compares unfavourably with the Deise Greenway,” Maynooth Cycling Campaign said in a blog post on their website on November 18.
Maynooth Cycling Campaign’s submission here
Meath County Council has rejected all the points raised in Maynooth Cycling Campaign’s submission on the Moygaddy Road, part of the proposed ring road around Maynooth.
The main point concerned the separation of an off road cycle track from the road. The council proposed a separation of 1.5m whereas Table 4.3 of TD300 Provision of Cycle Facilities in Rural Areas requires a minimum separation distance of 2m for speeds of 80km/h or less. The council’s response was “The separation distance at 1.5m is deemed to be appropriate”.
The second point of the submission was differentiation of cycle track from the footpath in level and material. Meath County Council responded that there would be suffice demarcation with different materials.
The third point was for the provision of filtered permeability on the existing road. Meath County Council undertook to implement some traffic calming but did not state whether or not filtered permeability would be included .
A common aspects of all three responses is that they fail to address the points raised in the submission and recommend no changes regardless of standards, best international practice or any other arguments or precedents. This continues the practice in most local authorities of looking for public submissions but rejecting submissions from cycling groups if it does accord with their proposals
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Ireland’s Cycling History – A Wonderful Story!
Paul Rouse, the noted sports historian has written this article, on cycling in Ireland, in a recent edition of the Examiner newspaper. Anyone who reads it will, I dare say, be very impressed and amazed at the grip that cycling had on the Irish psyche back in the early part of the 20th century.
The article also has wonderful and evocative images of cycling ‘events’ over the years. As we arrive next year in 2017 at the 200th anniversary of the invention of the bike, articles such as this will help us to appreciate how far the simple bicycle has come … and gone … in its development, and in our culture.
Sit back and Enjoy the Ride!
The figures, released at a press conference in Dublin this morning, show that 1,296 cars in Dublin have been recorded breaking a red light so far in 2016 – 24 times the rate of cyclists caught breaking red lights (54) in the same period.
In response to a question from TheJournal.ie, Garda Superintendent Tom Murphy said zero pedestrians have died in collision with a cyclist, but he said one has been seriously injured.
Cyclist.ie has a new working group examining how to integrate rail and cycling better. We want to see far higher quality cycle parking at all Irish rail stations, easier carriage of bicycles on trains and clearer information on how this can be done. We are inspired by the policies and practices of train operators abroad who really value their cycling and rail customers! Even simple interventions like giant bicycle logos at appropriate spots on carriages can make a difference – as shown in the photo above from Denmark!
The working group includes representatives from Cyclist.ie, Kilkenny Cycling Campaign, Maynooth Cycling Campaign and Cycling Ireland. The next of our regular meetings with Irish Rail will take place on Thu 20th October (afternoon).
We are now seeking a new volunteer (or several) from the wider cycling community who can help us prepare for these meetings. We would really like to hear from you if you are a regular train user – and cyclist – and have thought carefully about how Irish Rail could better accommodate its cycling customers. The ideal volunteer will have some knowledge of how progressive systems abroad work in terms of combining bike and rail, and/or can help us carry out research on this topic. We would also love to hear from you if you have specialised transport or mechanical engineering knowledge, since some of the discussions on the potential for retrofitting existing Irish Rail rolling stock can be quite technical. Even better still if the volunteer can take time out to come to meetings with us!
Please email the National Cycling Coordinator ASAP if you can help out (and ideally by Fri 14th October). Thank you.