Cycling in Irish Cities

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby ctesiphon » Tue May 16, 2006 12:10 am

Thanks for that CologneMike- nice to see they've put a bit of thought into it, and consultation too. But it's a pity that the network seems to be for the periphery only, with a few spurs into the town centre proper. As any cyclist knows it's in the centre, with narrower streets and more chaotic movement patterns, that provisions are more necessary than in the burbs. They seem to have fudged the issue just a bit. And you've got to love the bit about 'Limerick County Council Indicative Cycle Network'- ha!:)
User avatar
ctesiphon
Old Master
 
Posts: 1949
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2005 3:39 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby Devin » Fri May 19, 2006 3:26 am

It’s an interesting document. On the face of it it seems very committed and well-planned. But will those routes just be lanes at the edges of busy roads? I haven't been in Limerick in about 5 years (overdue a visit!) so I can't really remember how tolerable/intolerable traffic levels are in the city, or what the proportion of cyclists would be.

In the late ‘90s there was great fanfare when the cycle lane network for Dublin began to be introduced, about how it would transform the city for cyclists and how many hundreds of kilometres of cycle lane would be built. But what it amounted to essentially was lanes bunged in at the edge of polluted, traffic-gorged roads.
In short it didn’t improve things for cyclists in my opinion.
Devin
Old Master
 
Posts: 1509
Joined: Fri Dec 12, 2003 10:27 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby ctesiphon » Thu Jun 01, 2006 6:39 pm

User avatar
ctesiphon
Old Master
 
Posts: 1949
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2005 3:39 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby ctesiphon » Fri Jun 02, 2006 11:11 am

Not the first time I've seen a Garda motorbike parked in the bike lane, but the first time I've had my camera with me- Morehampton Road, 1st June 2006. So if the Gardai can't abide by the rules of the road, what hope for them enforcing the rules for others?

I've been back on the N11 daily for the last couple of months and not a day goes past without some obstacle blocking the way. And I'm not talking about the usual broken glass, bus passengers - sorry, customers - and their luggage, or wheelie bins. No, I mean workmen's SUVs parked right beside the house they're gutting (because 100 yards is too far to walk from a legal parking spot), Aircoach drivers pulling across me into bus stops without indicating, broken down cars put up on the bike path so they don't inconvenience motorised road users, even though there are three lanes for motorised traffic and only one for bikes (don't get me started on the 'mandatory use' rule- one of the few cyclist-related rules that the Gardai seem to [think they] know about...).

But the Gardai? I'd almost be laughing if I wasn't too busy taking aim at his dashboard instruments.
Attachments
Garda Bike Morehampton road 9.45am 1.vi.06 40%.jpg
Garda Bike Morehampton road 9.45am 1.vi.06 40%.jpg (116.14 KiB) Viewed 2556 times
User avatar
ctesiphon
Old Master
 
Posts: 1949
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2005 3:39 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby PDLL » Fri Jun 02, 2006 12:09 pm

I think you will find that in law, police vehicles, ambulances and fire engines can pretty much park where they wish when on duty. I am sure that somewhere in the Rules of the Road it states that such vehicles take precedence over other road users so in actual fact this police vehicle may be very much respecting the Rules of the Road.
PDLL
Member
 
Posts: 337
Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2005 3:18 pm

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby ctesiphon » Fri Jun 02, 2006 1:42 pm

Aah PDLL, good to have your input as always. Thanks for that.
Given that you're usually such a stickler for chapter and verse (facts on rural housing spring to mind), could I request a reference ot the specific bit of legislation/rules of the road, please? Thanks in advance.

I didn't post a picture of the scene this morning, where there was a fire engine and an ambulance parked in the bike lane at almost the same spot because they were attending to a person lying on a stretcher on the footpath. Don't know if he was a cyclist, a motorcyclist, a pedestrian or something else, but there was certainly a very good reason for those emergency vehicles to be there. But there was no good reason for the Garda bike to be there yesterday as far as I could see. Even if he (?) was on duty, there were plenty of places mere yards away that would have served his needs most adequately.
User avatar
ctesiphon
Old Master
 
Posts: 1949
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2005 3:39 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby PDLL » Fri Jun 02, 2006 2:17 pm

Happy to oblige. Consider, for example, Section 14 of the new draft Rules of the Road (to be found on http://www.transport.ie) where it says that 'Ambulances, fire brigade engines and Garda vehicles are exempt from speed limits and certain traffic regulations when being used in an emergency situation'. While it may not be obvious to you at the time of taking your photograph, the officer in question may have been involved in an emergency situation or may have been preventing one from happening. When someone's life is possibly in danger, one tends to be a little less pernickidy about where one parks.
PDLL
Member
 
Posts: 337
Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2005 3:18 pm

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby PVC King » Fri Jun 02, 2006 3:38 pm

PDLL wrote:Happy to oblige. Consider, for example, Section 14 of the new draft Rules of the Road (to be found on http://www.transport.ie) where it says that 'Ambulances, fire brigade engines and Garda vehicles re exempt from speed limits and certain traffic regulations when being used in an emergency situation'.


Would the problem in the images presented not be more a situation of zero velocity vs speed exemptions?
PVC King
 

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby PDLL » Fri Jun 02, 2006 3:47 pm

More likely just a common or garden case of an exemption from normal parking regulations for a police officer and his vehicle engaged in the execution of his duties as a guardian of law and order. Please see attached photo of another instance of a police vehicle contravening normal traffic regulations (taken from today's police raid on a terrorist suspect in London). Not so unusual or surprising after all.
Attachments
1412628.jpeg
1412628.jpeg (32.04 KiB) Viewed 2301 times
PDLL
Member
 
Posts: 337
Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2005 3:18 pm

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby ctesiphon » Fri Jun 02, 2006 6:03 pm

PDLL wrote:Happy to oblige. Consider, for example, Section 14 of the new draft Rules of the Road (to be found on http://www.transport.ie) where it says that 'Ambulances, fire brigade engines and Garda vehicles are exempt from speed limits and certain traffic regulations when being used in an emergency situation'. While it may not be obvious to you at the time of taking your photograph, the officer in question may have been involved in an emergency situation or may have been preventing one from happening. When someone's life is possibly in danger, one tends to be a little less pernickidy about where one parks.


The full quotation is actually:
"Ambulances, fire brigade engines and Garda vehicles are exempt from speed limits and certain general traffic regulations when being used in an emergency situation. Drivers of these vehicles are, however, required to take into account the safety of other road users in exercising these exemptions." (Emphasis added.)

So they should not jeopardise other road users, such as cyclists, in order to carry out their duties. Or, put another way, thou shalt not do evil that good may come.

Lots of interesting facts re cyclists rights (and responsibilities) in the Rules of the Road (Draft). Thanks for the link. For example, to answer one question Graham Hickey asked months ago, it seems riding on the footpath is expressly forbidden. So now we know.

Also, re your pic above- that situation has more in common with the situation I witnessed this morning, regarding which I did say that "there was certainly a very good reason for those emergency vehicles to be there." In your pic they seem actually to be blocking the road, so I don't think you can draw a parallel between the London pic and the Garda motorbike pic.
User avatar
ctesiphon
Old Master
 
Posts: 1949
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2005 3:39 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby GrahamH » Fri Jun 02, 2006 6:31 pm

Does 'other road users' also include pedestrians I wonder?

It's pretty obvious in the first picture picture that parking up on that dead space of pavement between the (nice early electric :)) lamppost and the tree would be 'tak[ing] into account the safety of other road users', and not the set-up depicted. On the balance of things, was a guardian of the law rushing off to save a baby's life, or was an ignorant Garda not bothered about the consequences of where they parked while dropping off a bit of paperwork?

It might have had something to do with the Australian delegation who were all still in Dublin a week after Howard's visit, given the calvalcade of particularly vulgar hired silver mercs and vans that swept through the city centre on Wednesday - lead by about six Garda motorbikes. Much smaller than most State visits it seemed...
GrahamH
Old Master
 
Posts: 4592
Joined: Tue Oct 15, 2002 11:24 am
Location: Ireland

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby PDLL » Wed Jun 07, 2006 10:50 am

ctesiphon wrote:The full quotation is actually:
"Ambulances, fire brigade engines and Garda vehicles are exempt from speed limits and certain general traffic regulations when being used in an emergency situation. Drivers of these vehicles are, however, required to take into account the safety of other road users in exercising these exemptions." (Emphasis added.)

So they should not jeopardise other road users, such as cyclists, in order to carry out their duties. Or, put another way, thou shalt not do evil that good may come..


Perhaps the Garda in question was acting on information not known to you (or any other member of the general public at that moment in time). Perhaps he parked it there in a hurry in pursuit of someone or in preventing a crime from taking place. Perhaps the Garda in question made a calculated and professional judgement at a critical moment in time that it was better to park his bike there and piss a few sensitive cyclists off than to allow something worse from happening (such as a crime or a more serious imminent accident). Yes, the emergency servcies have a responsibility to ensure that they avoid creating accidents, but all civilian road users also have a responsibility to ensure that the emergency services have their full understanding in the execution of their duties. In this case, it was a minor inconvenience to have to dismount momentarily from one's bike so as to safely negotiate the Garda's motorbike. Motorists are often obliged to perform far more dangerous and fast paced courtesy manouvers when confronted by an ambulance racing through a junction. It is not just about the Rules of the Road, it is also about good road etiquette and a respect for the often difficult and dangerous jobs which the emergency services have to perform. What this particular Garda was doing on this particular occasion is unknown to us, but perhaps it is wiser to give him the benefit of the doubt by assuming that he was engaged in professional duties that took priority over the rights of a cyclist. If you start questioning the rights of security personnel to execute their legitimate and authorized professional responsibilities (even when their immediate purpose is not obvious to you), then you are not really fulfilling your duties as a responsible citizen.
PDLL
Member
 
Posts: 337
Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2005 3:18 pm

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby Rusty Cogs » Wed Jun 07, 2006 2:09 pm

This arguement is really going nowhere as we've no idea if the Garda in question was fighting crime or queuing for the donut shop.
Rusty Cogs
Member
 
Posts: 185
Joined: Mon Feb 21, 2005 5:10 pm

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby ctesiphon » Wed Jun 07, 2006 6:00 pm

Perhaps. Perhaps. Perhaps.

I was stopped for long enough to remove my camera from my pannier, frame the shot, take two pictures, put the camera away and cycle off. At least 2 minutes. Long enough, I think, to be able to ascertain whether there was a Garda executing his emergency duties in a nearby location that would have required him to park in that spot. And guess what...?

"Motorists are often obliged to perform far more dangerous and fast paced courtesy manouvers"
Then they are driving too fast. It is incumbent on a motorist to drive with sufficient care and attention to be able to stop or alter their behaviour without endangering themselves or others. Not to do so is considered dangerous driving, but unfortunately the danger inherent in such behaviour is often only apparent when an unforeseen incident occurs, by which time it is often too late.

Anyway, I'm done on this one. You know by now PDLL that we fundamentally disagree.
Though I might add: when you're in a hole you stop digging.

To go back to a previous element of this thread (and another one on which I've disagreed with many members here), this article might be of some interest. It''s about rule-breaking cyclists in England and community opposition to their antics. You know how I feel already, I think- there's no need for me to rehash my points of view. In essence, I could have written 90% of this article.

Braking Point, by Will Storr, Observer Magazine, 4th June 2006
User avatar
ctesiphon
Old Master
 
Posts: 1949
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2005 3:39 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby ctesiphon » Sun Jul 16, 2006 11:17 pm

Two quick things I spotted that might be of interest to Dublin cyclists:

The Dublin City Cycle, organised by the DTO, DCC and DDDA, is on this Wednesday. Meet in Mayor Square at 7.30pm for an 8pm start. I missed last year's, but by all accounts it was great.

There's a Dublin Bicycle Festival happening too, in CHQ in the Docklands, from Friday 21st to Sunday 23rd- exhibition, performances, films etc.
User avatar
ctesiphon
Old Master
 
Posts: 1949
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2005 3:39 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby Devin » Wed Jul 19, 2006 12:28 am

Will definitely go on that Dublin City Cycle. I too missed last year's, but heard good things about it.

Will check out that bicycle festival too.
Devin
Old Master
 
Posts: 1509
Joined: Fri Dec 12, 2003 10:27 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby Bago » Wed Jul 19, 2006 12:46 am

My current pet hate as i cycle through phoenix park every morning and evening is the seeming complete disregard/lack of understanding/ complete ignorance to the concept of a bicycle path! In the evenings i see more people cycling on the road, it's just not worth using the perfectly good cyclepath due to the sheer numbers of prams, children, dogs, joggers, rollerbladers, power walkers, groups of pedestrians, fat pedestrians. It's turning me into a narky f****er i don't want to be , shouting at everybody i cycle by.:(
Bago
Member
 
Posts: 116
Joined: Fri Feb 24, 2006 4:04 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby ctesiphon » Wed Jul 19, 2006 1:52 pm

Bago wrote:My current pet hate as i cycle through phoenix park every morning and evening is the seeming complete disregard/lack of understanding/ complete ignorance to the concept of a bicycle path! In the evenings i see more people cycling on the road, it's just not worth using the perfectly good cyclepath due to the sheer numbers of prams, children, dogs, joggers, rollerbladers, power walkers, groups of pedestrians, fat pedestrians. It's turning me into a narky f****er i don't want to be , shouting at everybody i cycle by.:(

Agreed, Bago. While the bike path surface in the PP has improved lately, it's too much of a headache to use- meandering pedestrians, rollerbladers, etc., not to mention the almost total absence of light at night due to the weak street lamps. The OPW has a policy of keeping the PP as close to a rural idyll as possible, but this invariably means that the facilities are sub-standard for cyclists. I was out at a concert in Farmleigh on Monday night and cycling back towards town was a nightmare. At some of the junctions, especially at the roundabouts, markings for the bike lanes disappear totally, and it is a fact that about 80% of cycling accidents occur at junctions. Like you, Bago, I ended up using the road more than the bike lanes. It's a pity, as the PP has the potential to be a paradise for cyclists.
I know that the OPW has commissioned a study of the PP traffic with a view to improving the general layout. Here's hoping they prioritise cycling and pedestrian movements over private cars.
User avatar
ctesiphon
Old Master
 
Posts: 1949
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2005 3:39 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby hutton » Wed Jul 19, 2006 2:13 pm

I wonder has there ever been a prosecution by gardai over misuse of cycle lanes by others... I know what way Id bet on that one:rolleyes:
hutton
Senior Member
 
Posts: 993
Joined: Tue Dec 28, 2004 10:14 pm
Location: NAMA HQ

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby cobalt » Wed Jul 19, 2006 3:24 pm

"Driving on a cycle track" is one of the 31 new penalty points offences that came into force recently (one penalty point). It strikes me that it could be used for all those people who park in the cycle lane because they couldn't be bothered walking a wee bit further. After all, in order to park there, they had to drive into it. Or do you think that would work? Could the clampers report them to the Gardai and/or provide the Gardai with the digital photos they seem to take when they clamp someone?
cobalt
Member
 
Posts: 68
Joined: Tue Aug 03, 2004 11:07 am

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby a boyle » Wed Jul 19, 2006 3:48 pm

i am not trying to belittle you frustration in cycling through the city , but looking for garda enforcement to help cyclists will never work . Not because our gardai are any lazier than policemen in other countries but because almost all the cycle lanes are a joke.

People drive through cycle lanes , and park in them , even though they know it is selfish simply because they can.
if you want to improve things the solution is pretty simple. Move the cycle lanes to one side of the road only , and seperate the space from the rest of the road with concrete bumps , making sure they are just high enough to discourage all but the most hardy of drivers from entering the lane. The ones used along the docklands are just right.

This cycle lane problem is something that truly mistifies me. Such small concrete blips are cheap. It doesn't mean removing car lanes (god forbid - actually god did forbid any actions to impeded car use - little known fact . He said this right after denouncing just about anything fun) .
cycle lanes are being put in places where the traffic lanes are particulary wide for the most part , so nobody is losing out .

Instead we have these red strips that actually seem to attract danger instead of warding off.
a boyle
Member
 
Posts: 416
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2005 10:18 pm

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby jimg » Wed Jul 19, 2006 4:01 pm

My current pet hate as i cycle through phoenix park every morning and evening is the seeming complete disregard/lack of understanding/ complete ignorance to the concept of a bicycle path!

That's because it's poorly conceived and designed. For most of it's length, it looks to all intents and purposes like a normal path and it's right beside a similar path so it's not surprising that many make the mistake of walking/jogging on it. It's like when you have handle on a swing door people will try to pull the door open even if you put a "push" sign above the handle. If I'm going along Chesterfield Av., I always use the road as it's far easier and safer to navigate the roundabouts and junctions. Off the avenue it's not an issue.

Probably off topic but is there anyone who actively manages the park? It feels neglected in terms of development or promotion. There are so many simple and cheap things which could be done to make it a superb amenity for the city. For example, banning cars from all the roads south of Chesterfield Av. would hugely improve the place; most of the roads here are narrow and twisty and unsafe for car going faster than 20km/h anyway. Provide more concessions for kiosks for small shops/cafes. Put pressure on the guards to actually police the park which contains their headquarters; bike robbery and smash and grabs on parked cars are relatively common (I've suffered both). Or at least provide some sort of secure car/bike parking facilities. This would have the additional benefit of taking parked cars off the side of the roads. Change the bylaw to allow at least one Dublin bus route from the centre of town through the park with a couple a stops in the park itself to encourage visits to the park. Advertise the park and hold special events in it. I never appreciated the place until I started using it regularly a few years ago. Now I love it but it could do with attention from DCC - some sort of action plan and some proactive management.
jimg
Member
 
Posts: 480
Joined: Mon Nov 22, 2004 9:07 pm
Location: Zürich

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby a boyle » Wed Jul 19, 2006 4:08 pm

the comparison with central park could not be more stark.
a boyle
Member
 
Posts: 416
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2005 10:18 pm

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby ctesiphon » Wed Jul 19, 2006 4:24 pm

jimg-
PP is the responsibility of the OPW, not of DCC. I actually made a submission to the traffic study on many of the points you raise, such as car parking, bus routes, etc. I know, for example, that the OPW isn't keen on letting buses through as it might set a precedent and the guard their turf very carefully.

a boyle-
The Guards are the traffic enforcement body in the city, so I don't think the expectation of enforcement is misplaced. Well, in theory anyway.
Also, I tend to think segregated lanes are an admission of failure. In other words, in an ideal world there's be no need for lanes at all. (I have a funny picture on this that I'll post later.)

cobalt-
I heard of a case in Britain (I think) where a driver argued successfully in court that although he was parked in a cycle lane, as nobody had seen him drive onto it, nobody could prove that he had. :mad:

Don't forget the Dublin City Cycle, everyone! 8pm this evening.
User avatar
ctesiphon
Old Master
 
Posts: 1949
Joined: Fri Apr 01, 2005 3:39 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Cycling in Irish Cities

Postby a boyle » Wed Jul 19, 2006 4:54 pm

no no don't get me wrong . i don't think that it is ok that gardai jsut plain don't bother. I just think it is a case of what is practical.

I definetely think that the traffic corps should be running around handing out fines left right and center : not yielding , not stopping, using the right turn lane just to get in front of everyone going straight , cyclists not wearing a helmet ,etc etc.

But i have to disagree regarding setting aside a cycle path , surely that is a good idea. They give a perception of safety which is probably the most important thing to encourage more cyclists. If people perceive it to be safe , they will feel safe , and far more will use the cycle lanes. Then i think you will find people respecting them more, as they will be used , which currently they are not.
a boyle
Member
 
Posts: 416
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2005 10:18 pm

PreviousNext

Return to Ireland



cron