Submission – N11/N25 Oylegate to Rosslare Harbour Motorway
WexBUG – Wexford Bicycle Users Group
Submission to Wexford County Council (c/o MottMcDonald Ltd.) on its route options/constraints study
15th Sept 2020
Theme: Safe, segregated cycling and active travel infrastructure– don’t isolate us!
What is this? An outline of our main considerations on the Wexford County Council N11/N25 Oylegate to Rosslare Harbour Motorway route options/constraints study
By Whom? WexBUG – A bicycle users group made up of Wexford pedestrians, cyclists and motorists who are trying to push change from car-centred thinking to active travel and cycling in Wexford. We provide advocacy for cycling as a form of transport that is sustainable and attractive. The primary developments in road infrastructure have catered for a society which allows for ease of movement of cars, however without an equivalent emphasis on safe sustainable travel the safety of such diminishes.
Why? To ensure that cycling is seen as part of Ireland’s economic and transport strategy. We want to give Ireland’s children something of the childhood we had: cycling to school, to the beach, more independence, health active choices. Not stuck in a car being driven to and from school, becoming more obese, and more dependant. We want adults to have these active travel options for the same reasons. It is expected that this is the first generation that will live a shorter life than their forebears. What a legacy we leave the nations children!
What do we want? Accessible and safe provision for cycling and active travel. Segregation: not just lines painted on the road. We want grannies and kids and non-‘cyclists’ to feel that cycling is a safe and valid choice.
Specifically, on the N11/N25 Oylegate to Rosslare project we want:
Existing heavily used cycling routes to be preserved or viable direct alternatives provided and to provide under/overpasses to ensure that the motorway does not become an impediment to non-motorised forms of travel in the area.
Provision of segregated bi-directional cycle way adjacent to the proposed motorway.
To have any infrastructure provided link into existing cycle networks within the area.
To be consulted when a more detailed route is chosen/proposed
Who cares? Ultimately everyone will. Those who care about climate change, those with children, those who need to take more exercise, or those who yearn not to be tied to their car? Shouldn’t Wexford County Council show they care through the design of major infrastructure?
How? Wexford County Council should show they care by allocating resources. Everything else is idle talk or meaningless words on paper. Allocate for cycling and active travel to make our county a better, healthier and safer place to live.
WexBUG wants existing heavily used cycling routes to be preserved or viable direct alternatives provided and to provide under/overpasses to ensure that the motorway does not become an impediment to non-motorised forms of travel in the area.
The STRAVA heat map below clearly shows the heavy use of the existing N11 which is highlighted for possible motorway conversion. Cyclists will be excluded from a motorway. It would be unacceptable to WexBUG to lose this existing ability.
It is also clear from the map that there is extensive connectivity between the Wexford town within the Ring road and outside the ring road. This includes leisure cyclists but also many bike commuters travelling between the business areas of Wexford town (hospital, Council/Government, schools, EPA, Teagasc and many other places of work) and the outskirts on the other side of the ring road/Ferrycarrig bridge.
STRAVA heat map of heavily cycled routes around Wexford town.
Extracts from the heat map shows details:
Ferrycarrig bridge – no alternative if a motorway crossing excludes this for cycling
The main arteries into Wexford town are all heavily used for cycling and this connectivity must remain.
Further details of road use by cyclists can be obtained from https://metro.strava.com/ 蜉
WexBUG wants the provision of segregated bi-directional cycle way adjacent to the proposed motorway.
The recent opening of the Rose Kennedy bridge shows that short sighted exclusion of cyclists is a huge missed opportunity that will be very expensive to rectify.
If the proposed route has a bidirectional segregated cycle path with some well thought out connections, then we have the potential of opening up a spine of cycling infrastructure along the length of our county.
There are funds allocated for upgrading cycling provision on the old N11 north of Enniscorthy (N11 greyway蜉). A continuation of this to a segregated cycle path from Oylegate to Rosslare Harbour could be a game changer in County Wexford.
It would have the potential to start the creation of a network linking:
3Rocks walking trails on Forth mountain (see map on next page of overlap area)
Existing cycleways within Wexford town
The proposed Rosslare to Waterford greenway蜉 (even if only a section of this is completed in the SE of the county)
The proposed Curracloe/Raven蜉 and/or South Slobs Greenways (vis Wexford town cycleways)
The existing Cycle hub touring routes
3 Rocks trail area蜉
ii) Existing cycleways within Wexford town – planned and/or built蜉
iii) Rosslare Europort to Waterford City greenway
iv) Wexford Cycle hub routes.
WexBUG wants the cycling infrastructure to be provided to link into existing cycle networks within the area.
The existing cycling strategy for Wexford has in large part not been implemented. However, there are some sections of cycle way that must be considered when they are finally constructed. In addition all of the existing cycle networks (planned or built ) in 2 (i)- (iv) above must be considered.
WexBUG wants to be consulted when a more detailed route is chosen/proposed
WexBUG welcomes the chance to contribute to this proposed infrastructure and can be contacted at email@example.com to contribute further when a more detailed route is chosen.
Signed: Phil Skelton (Chairperson WexBUG)
Leonard Kelly (Ind. Councillor)
Cormac Mac Gearailt
Supported by WexBUG main membership
‘In order to develop appropriate design standards for rural cycling facilities, there are a number of core design principles that need to be implemented. The principles include Coherence, Convenience, Directness, Safety, Comfort, Attractiveness and Access.’ (TII Rural Cycleway Design DN-GEO-03047 April 2017)
‘Walking and Cycling can bring many benefits to Wexford and its residents. ‘Investment in cycling and walking has been shown to offer excellent value for money, and, especially, in times of economic uncertainty, the Borough Council has a duty to ensure that all of its spending is focused on achieving the best results.’ (Wexford County Council Town Cycling strategy 2015-2020.)