You won’t be able to move in Ireland this weekend.
The Pope is making his way to Dublin and Knock this weekend, which means we’re going to see major traffic restrictions around the country.
AA Roadwatch has released a statement on the restrictions, urging people to take public transport if they need to travel into the city centre.
Arwen Foley, Editor of AA Roadwatch said: “Planning is key this weekend. Additional services will be made available across all public transport networks and we are strongly encouraging people to use them.”
He continued: “The full length of the M50 and the M1 will be open as normal so once on the motorways, there will be no problem getting to Dublin Airport. The Port Tunnel and Tom Clarke Bridge (East Link) will also be open so anyone wishing to travel between the north and south sides of the city, is advised to use these routes.”
There are no more tickets left for the events in the Phoenix Park and Knock, so people are asked to not make their way to either event if they do not have a ticket.
Those attending the mass in the Phoenix Park will be able to avail of free public transport in the Greater Dublin Area on Sunday by presenting their ticket to drivers.
If you are travelling from outside Dublin, you will need to organise your trip in advance, and pre-book tickets for transport. However, it has been noted that a lot of services are already fully booked.
The Final Mass in the Phoenix Park will take place at 3pm, with the majority of road closures happening around this time.
Arwen says: “No matter how you plan on getting to the Phoenix Park, you are advised to be prepared for a long walk.
“[It’s] almost half the distance of the Women’s Mini Marathon, both on the way there and on the way back” warns Arwen.
“There will be manned rest areas and water available for those making the trek along each route though.”
A Controlled Access Zone will be in place from 6am. The N3/Navan Rd, N4/Lucan Rd and N7/Naas Rd will be closed at the M50 Interchange from this time, with traffic sent either north or south onto the M50. “Major restrictions will be in place around the Phoenix Park, stretching many kilometres and also in the city centre.”
As of now, there are no planned closures for Finglas Rd, Ballymun Rd or any major northside commuter routes, however there will be restrictions as you get closer to the city centre. Southside closures start at Grand Canal, with the bridges along this artery closed from 8am on Sunday.
There is no car park near the venue, so public transport is the best option. There will be specially created Park & Ride hubs where people can park and take public transport at Leopardstown Racecourse, UCD Belfield and Maynooth University.
There will be no Luas Red Line services between Blackhorse and Smithfield from 7am until 10pm on Sunday.
70,000 people are expected to attend the Festival of Families at Croke Park on Saturday. Gates open at 4pm and the concert will be on from 6:30pm to 8:30pm. There will be a number of road closures across the city from about midday, including O’Connell St, Church St, Patrick St and Dame St. However, some roads will be closed as early as 6am.
There will also be ongoing restrictions on both Saturday and Sunday as Pope Francis visits a number of locations in Dublin city centre.
Pope Francis will visit Knock in County Mayo on Sunday morning. To accommodate this, the centre of Knock Village will be closed from 6pm on Saturday. The N17 will also be closed from midnight on Saturday until at least 6pm on Sunday between Charlestown and Claremorris.
Anyone travelling to the event is advised that there will be a considerable walk from the car parks and there will be no shuttle bus facility to the event site.
For full details on traffic and travel arrangements are available here.