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History of Dublin's M50

  • 09-06-2004 1:11pm
    Registered Users Posts: 7,580 ✭✭✭ BrianD3

    Anyone know the exact dates when the various sections of the M50 were opened. I need this info to settle an argument with a mate. I say that the section from Tallaght exit to Lucan exit was opened sometime in the mid-eighties, probably around 1984. The road stopped at Lucan as the Westlink bridge hadn't been completed yet. The bridge opened in 1990 and the Northern Cross opened in late 1996.

    My mate says that the section from Tallaght exit to Blanchardstown exit (which includes the Westlink) opened in 1990. So there was no delay in opening the bridge. He agrees with me that opening date of the Northern Cross section was late 1996.

    Who is correct?



  • Registered Users Posts: 4,107 John R

    On a Dublin OS map from 1986 the only section shown is that from Tallaght road to Greenhills road, it is not marked as a motorway though.

  • Registered Users Posts: 578 ✭✭✭ atgate


    The Tallaght to Greenhills Road wasn't motorway. It was single carrageway and was built before tymon park. However even though it was completed it was never opened. I remember as a kid hearing that they had the money to build it but no money to pay for the power for the lights, upkeep etc. I don't know if this is true but I do remember that the weeds broke up through the surface of the road. It was such a pity because it would have taken a load of pressure off the old traffic road. There used to be traffic jams from Templeouge Bridge almost to Tallaght Village (enterance to Bancroft estate to be exact).

    I think you're partly right about the M50. I'm almost sure the Bridge opened after the strech of M50 from Tallaght to Lucan. The only reason I can remember this is that the 1st bit was open when they had the open day where pedestrians were allowed to walk on the Westlink the weekend before the official opening. I don't think the M50 opened as early as you think - I would guess at 1988/89 and there was only a short delay (months) between the opening of the M50 and the westlink. But I could be wrong......

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,381 ✭✭✭ Genghis

    My recollection would be similar to atgates. That road through Tymon Park was probably built around 1983/84, but was never opened and eventually became the (I think) Northbound carriage of the new M50. The first section was Tallaght to Lucan, and I'd guess that opened at the earliest 1988. The West Link opened a short time after, probably before 1990, and with it came the Northern section as far as the N2. about 4 years after that the motorway linked with the M1 on the Northside. In 2002 the Tallaght / Sandyford section opened.

    What would also be fascinating would be the pre-history of the road, and the numerous 'visions' for it before any construction work began. Most of these foresaw an underground tunnel running anywhere from a point on the south of Dublin bay to the north of Dublin bay - in other words a real 'ring-road', not a C-road.

    I'd expect a book about it when the project is finally complete in the next 2 years.

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 540 Andrew Duffy

    That tunnel - the combination of the Port Tunnel and the Eastern Bypass - is still alive, sort of. The large Sandyford interchange has apparently been designed to cater for it in the future without disruption.

  • Registered Users Posts: 78,069 ✭✭✭✭ Victor

    Tallaght - Knocklyon (one two-way carriageway) pre-1990

    Lucan - Blanchardstown (Westlink) 1990 or 1991 - I walked it on the day they opened it to the public the day before the official opening.

    Lucan - Naas Road a few months after Westlink

    Naas Road - Ballymount a few months after Naas Road

    Ballymount - Tallaght about a year after Ballymount

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  • Registered Users Posts: 7,580 ✭✭✭ BrianD3

    Lucan - Naas Road a few months after Westlink

    Naas Road - Ballymount a few months after Naas Road

    Ballymount - Tallaght about a year after Ballymount
    That doesn't sound right at all. That would mean that the Westlink opened before most of the rest of the western parkway. I don't think that's right because
    a) I distinctly remember being driven in my parents' car from Tallaght to Lucan and seeing the unopened bridge (with cones and signs indictating that it wasn't open) up ahead.
    b) I read on I think the NTR website that the Westlink opened in March 1990 which sounds right. If the Westlink opened in 1990 and the sequence of events above is true, then you couldn't drive from Lucan to Tallaght until around 1992 or 1993. That can't be right.

    Unless my memory is playing up again :)

    I have now revised my opinion of the sequence of events based on the posts in this thread. I now think that I was off the mark in estimating 1984 as the opening date of the M50. It was more like 1988/1989/1990. However I still maintain that the Westlink was opened later than the Lucan - Tallaght section. Except the time delay was between a few months and a year or two rather than the six years than I estimated initially.


  • Registered Users Posts: 298 ✭✭ useeme

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