Before this new roundabout was added at the bottom of Sinnottstown Lane, there was a mandatory southbound cycle lane right through here. This lane ran almost up to the Rosslare roundabout ahead and was tantalising close to the relative safety of the hard shoulder on the Rosslare Rd.
All it needed was an off road link to connect them and give this lane full permeability.
But alas, this is not to be.. Here we take a closer look.
Sinnottstown Lane was one particular project identified by WexBUG as a ‘quick win’. You can read more about it on this blog. (Link attached from Dec 2019)
We shared our thoughts on it at the time with Wexford Co Co where they appeared to share our optimism for this quick win project.
We are disappointed that his hasn’t worked out as planned and as yet despite our communication with the council, a suggestion as to how we now connect this recently shortened cycle lane to the hard shoulder beyond hasn’t been forthcoming.
Our fear is that an opportunity for permeability here has been lost for an important route.
During the summer, this project begun and I didn’t like what I was seeing here.
When dealing with cycling infrastructure, I believe you need to go above and beyond what might be seen as being safe for other road users.
Bear in mind that according to the Road Safety Authority, a child of 12 is viewed as being OK to cycle independently.
This needs to be taken in to account when the road safety audit is being carried out. A child of that age (or potentially younger), may not be fully aware of the added complexities that a junction like this can potentially pose; They may see a lane ahead with no markings to stop/yield etc. and simply carry on cycling oblivious to more complex hazards that an adult might see. They may not for example be aware of what complexity a high sided vehicle pulling up along side them or a wide turning HGV might have in the overall safety. (See image below)
I felt that the hatching here should have been burned off and the cycle lane ended well before this roundabout with some warning signs.
A hand painted yellow’ yield’ marking on the road was seen as adequate.
As luck would have it, we didn’t see any collision here.
However, as an award winning road safety advocate, I firmly believe that this is the level of thought that needs to be put in when interfering with cycling infrastructure rather than create added risks.
This level should go over and above regular compliance when vulnerable road users are involved in my view.
In the last month, this roundabout was completed.
It’s disappointing that the needs of cyclists don’t appear to have been prioritised here taking into account the hierarchy of road users.
The Design Manual for Urban Roads and Streets sets out a hierarchy where pedestrians take priority on Irish streets, followed by cyclists, public transport users, and finally private vehicles.