From Bad to Worse in Templeogue Village

Cycling through Templeogue village recently, I couldn’t help but notice (because I was suddenly *very* close to the passing cars and SUV’s on the morning commute) that the old, poorly maintained, semi-segregated cycle lanes had been removed and replaced with some advisory lanes.

Oh joy.

Now, not only are advisory lanes not advised (ho ho), they are especially bad here as the road is not wide enough to cater for two advisory lanes without a serious reduction in the number of vehicles passing through (and seeing as this is the continuation of the N81 route in from the M50 and Tallaght, that’s definitely not the case). The speed limit is the standard 50km/h. In the village there is nose-in parking which means people reversing out into the cycle lane. There are also multiple entrances to small car parks and other businesses which involve vehicles cutting across and pullout out on to the cycling areas.  I can’t understand who thought this was in any way a solution to safe cycling through the village.

Let’s take a look at the ‘advisory’ lanes in the village now, the narrowness of the carriageway and the uselessness of a painted line to provide safety is perfectly illustrated by this truck attempting to pass through the village:

Templeogue Village. I feel so safe!
New ‘advisory’ lanes in Templeogue Village

It can’t even fit in the space allocated to it without intruding on the cycling lane, no matter what the driver does. And to add insult to injury, the remaining semi-segregated lane is impossible to access from the new approach angle – there’s no drop kerb. You can see it in the above image as the red strip to the left of the truck. You’d run the risk of skidding along the kerb or worse if you attempted to access the lane. It’s now perfectly useless.

For reference, you can see the old semi-segregated cycle lanes on Google Maps, at about the same place as the photo above:

 

Google Street View of Templeogue village, Aug 2014 imagery
Google Street View, August 2014 imagery

Obviously, these were very poorly maintained. And the colouration is of no use to a blind or sight impaired walker (which is why I term this ‘semi-segregated’ rather than segregated – it’s effectively mixed with pedestrians). But from a cycling safety point of view, they were far more welcome than the current situation.

There’s no way you can point to these painted lines and say that’s safe, that’s going to enable more people to cycle, that’s there for kids to cycle to school on. It’s a mess that mixes cyclists with drivers on a very busy road that only serves to discourage anyone other than the experienced from cycling here.