The M-50 in Dublin, Ireland

The M-50 in Dublin, Ireland

The design, rehabilitation and operation of the M-50 Dublin Ring Road

The M-50 is one of the most important motorways in Ireland forming the backbone of the Irish high-capacity highway system and also channels the traffic around the Irish capital city.

This urban motorway, with a double lane in each direction, constitutes the Dublin ring road around which the city accesses are arranged, in particular, those to the city's airport and seaport.

The project was announced by the National Roads Authority as the fundamental piece in the development of the highway system in the Dublin metropolitan area. The need to expand the M-50 was identified as one of the main projects included in the 2000-2006 National Development Plan.

The works consist of expanding the ring road motorway from two to four lanes in each direction and the extension of the lanes by twenty-four kilometres, together with the operation and maintenance of another 19.3 kilometres. 

This involves not only large volumes of earth movement and paving, but also complicated traffic management and of the works stages so the users are not affected by the construction.

The typical main trunk section is that of two separate roadways with three 3.50-metre lanes per roadway, 1-metre interior verges and a variable width (2.6 metres minimum) central reservation, 3.5-metre auxiliary lanes and a 2.5-metre hard shoulder. The total (minimum) width is 37.6 metres 

The new constructed structures are 17 highway bridges, three river/canal bridges, one bridge over a railway and four pedestrian footbridges. Furthermore, nineteen operations were executed under existing structures.

Remarkable aspects

  • It is a key piece in the development of the Dublin highway system.
  • Careful planning so that the users are not affected by the works.
  • The Irish Concrete Society Award within the Civil Works category.

Client: M-50 Concession Ltd.

Start date: 2007

End date: 2010