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Dublin Port Company is changing the speed limits throughout its north port road network from 50km/h to 40km/h as part of the Dublin SafePort initiative. The initiative also announces the alignment of the speed limits within the seven unitised terminals to 20km/h.

Dublin SafePort is a port-wide safety initiative launched in July with the support of all seven unitised terminal operators. The founding partners of this initiative are Dublin Ferryport Terminals, Doyle Shipping Group, Dublin Port Company, Irish Ferries, Peel Ports, Seatruck Ferries, Stena Line and P&O Ferries. The purpose of the initiative is to support and foster an enhanced safety culture among port workers which will see Dublin Port Company and the seven terminal operators increase their collaboration and alignment on safety practices across the 260-hectare estate.

Following completion of the main phase of Dublin Port’s internal roads project to upgrade and reconfigure the Port’s internal road network the current phase of the Dublin SafePort initiative focuses on roads and terminal speed limit safety. The investment in roads, in active travel and the launch of the Dublin SafePort initiative are important steps in the safe development of Dublin Port in line with Masterplan 2040.

The announcement comes as Dublin Port once again hosts Irish Port Safety Week following its successful launch last year. The dates for Irish Port Safety Week this year were selected to follow European Safety Week, as port authorities across the country have come together to highlight and enhance collective safety responsibility with events planned for each day of the week.

The events of Irish Port Safety Week are an opportunity to work collaboratively, to share knowledge and experience towards improving safety culture. The calendar of events includes a HGV Driving Simulator, the RSA’s road safety interactive unit, known as the Shuttle, fire awareness training, first aid training, and a mental health talk from former New Zealand rugby star and pundit Brent Pope on Wednesday. Wednesday will also see the judging of a colouring competition amongst local schools with the prizes being awarded in the afternoon.

Dublin Port is delighted to have the assistance and support of the Road Safety Authority, An Garda Síochána, Dublin Fire Brigade, the Irish Coast Guard, the RNLI and other services who interact frequently across the port area.

Irish Ports Safety Week Calendar of Events - Dublin Port

Irish Ports Safety Week Calendar of Events - Dublin PortIrish Ports Safety Week Calendar of Events - Dublin Port

Commenting on the changes, Dublin Port Harbour Master Captain Michael McKenna said, “The health and safety of all port users is the highest priority. I am delighted that the Dublin SafePort partners are showing such commitment with the changes and alignment of our speed limits and our hosting of Irish Port Safety Week. There is a calendar of fantastic events throughout the week which are open to all port users and tenants and we are inviting and encouraging as many people as possible to get involved. We are grateful for the support of key stakeholders including An Garda Síochána, the Road Safety Authority, the HSA and the unitised terminal operators as we look forward to working together to continue to develop the Dublin SafePort initiative.”

Dublin Port Harbour Master Captain Michael McKennaDublin Port Harbour Master Captain Michael McKenna

Christine Hegarty, Road Safety and Education Manager at the RSA said, “Our collaborative work with Dublin Port on this change has been a rewarding experience. Speed reduction is a key factor in reducing the number of accidents on our roads and the Port’s road network is no different, so it is heartening to see them take such a proactive approach to managing that situation.”

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A Dutch marine contractor are about to begin work on a Capital Dredging campaign at Dublin Port in order to create two new riverside berths.

As disclosed by Dublin Port Company, the contractor Van Oord, reports DredgingToday, intends to carry out loading and dumping at sea of dredged material arising from capital dredging as part of the MP2 Project over the period October to December 2022.

The MP2 Project (website) is as Afloat reported is the second Strategic Infrastructure Development Project to be brought forward for planning from Dublin Port’s Masterplan 2040, reviewed 2018. An Bord Pleanála granted Planning Permission for the MP2 Project on 1st July 2020 (ABP-304888-19).

The areas to be dredged during the 2022 campaign all lie within Dublin Port and comprise the creation of the new Berth 52 and Berth 53, and localised widening of the navigation channel in the vicinity of the Poolbeg Oil Jetty.

The dredged material – consists of a mixture of clay, silt, sand, gravel and cobbles – will be disposed of at the existing licensed offshore disposal site located at the entrance to Dublin Bay to the west of the Burford Bank, (6.75 km from the lighthouse at the end of the Great South Wall).

Dredging will be carried out using a combination of a backhoe dredger and a trailer suction hopper dredger together with support vessels.

Published in Dredging

Part of Dublin’s original sea wall dating back to the late 1720s has been discovered during excavations beneath a former electricity substation at Dublin Port.

Announcing the find today (Wednesday 5 October), Dublin Port Company also revealed the discovery of dockworker artefacts including clay pipes, leather shoe parts and pottery fragments from the 19th century.

The “historic” unearthing was made during works being carried out on the former redbrick electricity substation located near the junction of East Wall Road and Alexandra Road in the grounds of Port Centre.    

“The original sea wall once enclosed the eastern and northern sides of newly reclaimed land that would become known as the North Lotts – acting as a polder,” the port company explains.

“As the port extended eastwards away from the city, the sea wall’s original purpose became obsolete, and the facing stones of the wall were removed.

“It is likely that the stones were re-used to construct the three-metre-high boundary wall that defines the port’s perimeter today, visible from East Wall Road. It is from this original sea wall that the area known as East Wall derives its name today.”   

Jim Kelleher, head of special projects with the port’s heritage and communications team, said: “We have long suspected that part of the original sea wall may have lain beneath the old redbrick substation, which itself is a protected structure.

“But it has been incredibly exciting to have those suspicions confirmed, and to see this part of the original ‘East Wall’ for the first time.” 

The port company promises that the sea wall — visible through a glass floor — and related items will on permanent display within the restored substation at Port Centre. Dublin Port has more on the story HERE.

Published in Dublin Port

Places are still available for this Sunday’s heritage walking tour of Dublin Port with Anthony Finnegan as part of Dublin Port Company’s events for Heritage Week

Dublin Port’s history dates back to 1707 and while the company has always looked forward, the port has never lost sight of its substantial heritage.

Much of the evolution of communities in the North and East Wall areas is inextricably linked either to the port itself, or the numerous industries which developed around it.

Railways, shipbuilding, car assembly, timber importers, and coal are some of the many businesses that flourished and evolved throughout the port’s history.

The early housing stock built in the vicinity of the port was developed to accommodate the workers and from those communities came significant artists, musicians, writers and poets.

Anthony Finnegan, a registered tour guide, served as a shore engineer at Dublin Port for nearly 30 years. Join him on a 45-minute walking tour this Sunday afternoon 14 August which starts at ‘the Sphere’ in Port Centre on Alexandra Road and concludes in Dublin Port’s new graving dock Heritage Zone.

The tour is free, with starting times at noon and 1pm, but booking is essential via the Eventbrite page.

Dublin Port Company advises the following: Parking is available at Dublin Port Centre. Access both on foot and by car via the gates on Alexandra Road. The tour will include the maritime garden which has a small number of steps. Port Centre will be closed so there is no access to toilet facilities on site.

Published in Dublin Port

The histories, life and culture of five port towns in Ireland and Wales as Afloat previously reported, will feature in a film and exhibition in Dublin during Heritage Week 2022.

These events have been produced by Aberystwyth University and the University of Wales Trinity Saint Davids as part of Ports, Past and Present, an international project led by University College Cork (UCC) which explores the history and cultural heritage of the ports.

Project leader Professor Claire Connolly from University College Cork said: “The Ports, Past and Present project frames voices, images and stories from across the five ports, enabling new forms of engagement with a shared past.”

The film, 'At the Water’s Edge: Stories of the Irish Sea’, showcases stunning views of the landscapes and wildlife of the Irish Sea coast. Through stories told by local people, it explores the interconnected history of the ports of Dublin and Rosslare Harbour in Ireland, and of Fishguard, Holyhead and Pembroke Dock in Wales, as well as the three ferry routes connecting them. Stories include those of dock workers and kayakers, local historians, and wildlife lovers.

Dublin residents Gary Brown, Shane O’Doherty, Audrey Mac Cready, Jenny Kilbride, John Hawkins, Séan Potts, Mick Foran, and Kay Foran are among those who feature in the film, sharing their stories of living and working in the area. Shane O’Doherty describes the links between the landscape and history in Dublin Bay, while Kay Foran shares her memorable stories of signing up as a rare female dockworker.

The film screens at the Port Centre, Dublin Port, at 5 pm on Saturday, August 13. Email Rita Singer to request a free ticket to the screening: [email protected].

With thanks to Dublin Port Company for their support of this event.

Meanwhile, the ‘Creative Connections’ exhibition showcases inspiring works by 12 creative practitioners who have worked with communities across the five ferry ports to present their unique heritage stories through storytelling, community art, photography, film and a radio play. This work is led by the University of Wales Trinity Saint David.

The exhibition will be launched at a special reception at 6 pm on Tuesday, August 16 in EPIC’s Liffey Corner gallery space, at the CHQ building. Tuesday’s reception will include readings and a short film showing. The exhibition runs from August 13 to August 21, with further events scheduled throughout the week.

To sign up for the Creative Connections exhibition launch reception and related events, visit here

The project is funded by the European Regional Development Fund through the Ireland Wales Co-operation Programme. The project is led by UCC in partnership with Aberystwyth University, the University of Wales Trinity Saint David, and Wexford County Council.

Published in Dublin Port
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Dublin Port’s chief executive Eamonn O’Reilly is moving on after 12 years at the helm.

He does so at a time when the port reports a return to almost pre-pandemic and pre-Brexit trading levels, with overall volumes growing by 10.1 per cent to 18.6 million gross tonnes and an increase in ship arrivals in the first half of this year.

O’Reilly spoke to Afloat's Wavelengths about the port’s performance and its strategic infrastructure projects – including the Poolbeg peninsula plan, which is at pre-planning stage with An Bord Pleanála.

This will include moving the container terminal eastwards, converting the existing container terminal into a roll-on/roll-off terminal, and a new bridge, taking heavy traffic off the Tom Clarke bridge and linking directly into the port tunnel. This will help the port reaches the targets in its master plan, he says.

It will include “softening” the boundary between the port and the city, he says, with East Wall Road – which he has described as one of the most hostile roads in the country - transforming into a “boulevard” as it loses all those heavy goods vehicles.

The port is currently working with Grafton Architects on the Liffey/Tolka project, and he says it is going to transform the eastern edge of the city.

He also spoke about Ireland’s population increase, why it makes no sense to move the port – but we should be making plans for an additional east coast port, as Dublin Port is due to reach capacity by 2040.

And he spoke about his own future plans as an electrical engineer. He expressed frustration at the amount of time it is taking Ireland to develop the infrastructure we need to decarbonise.

“Worldwide, we’ve known for 30 years what is coming,” he says.

Listen to Eamonn O’Reilly below.

Published in Wavelength Podcast
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Dublin Port and the Embassy of Argentina in Dublin have welcomed one of the world’s largest Tall Ships, the 340-foot-long Libertad, on a two-day visit to Dublin. She is berthed at Berth 18, next to the 3Arena, and will be open to the public, free of charge, on Saturday 30th July, from 2 pm to 6 pm.

The Libertad last visited Dublin in November 2019 and is the first tall ship to be open to the public since before the pandemic.

Libertad lifts her anchor on Dublin Bay and heads into the Port for a two day visitLibertad lifts her anchor on Dublin Bay and heads into the Port for a two day visit Photo: Robbie Reynolds

Having arrived from Baltimore, USA, the Libertad will leave for Saint Malo, France, as part of its 149-day training voyage to 11 ports across nine countries (Brazil, Santa Lucia, Dominican Republic, Cuba, Mexico, USA, Ireland, France and Spain). Sailing with the crew are four Irish volunteers from the Atlantic Youth Trust. The volunteers boarded while the Libertad was anchored in Killala Bay and they have travelled with the ship to Dublin.

Libertad on the Liffey - the Libertad on the Liffey - This magnificent 340ft tall ship opens to the public to visit, free of charge on Saturday, 30th July 2022 from 2-6pm Photo: Robbie Reynolds

Led by Commanding Officer Captain Carlos Schavinsky Trinchero, the Libertad is the Argentinian Navy’s sail training ship and travels around the world carrying a message of goodwill. This will be the Libertad’s tenth visit to Irish waters since her maiden call in 1968. She subsequently visited the capital in 2012 as part of the Tall Ships festival and again in 2016 as part of her “bicentennial journey” to mark 200 years of Argentinian independence. This trip will include a trip to Foxford in Co. Mayo, the birthplace of Admiral William Brown, founder of the Argentinian Navy, to mark the 245th anniversary of his birth.

One of the world’s largest and fastest tall ships, the Libertad, arrived in the capital for a visit as part of the Argentinian Navy’s training voyage around the worldOne of the world’s largest and fastest tall ships, the Libertad, arrived in the capital for a visit as part of the Argentinian Navy’s training voyage around the world Photo: Robbie Reynolds

Members of the public visiting the ship on Saturday will be able to get a closer insight into life on board for the 289-strong crew and inspect the fine craftsmanship of the vessel.

Commenting on the tall ship’s visit, The Ambassador of Argentina to Ireland, Moira Wilkinson said; “This is a very poignant visit for everyone in our embassy, following the passing of my predecessor, Laura Bernal who passed away in 2020. For 75 years, Argentina and Ireland have enjoyed excellent diplomatic relations built on a shared sense of history and a mutual desire to strengthen our cultural, academic and trading ties. The arrival of the Libertad reminds us of the deep connection that exists between our two nations and symbolises the hand of friendship from Argentina to Ireland, and it is fantastic to begin another chapter of Argentinian-Irish relations. For most of the cadets on board, it will be their first visit to Ireland, which means it is a special opportunity to visit the birthplace of Admiral Brown and pay tribute to his service to Argentina and the Argentinian navy.”

Encouraging members of the public to visit over the weekend, Eamonn O’Reilly, Chief Executive, Dublin Port Company, said; “Dublin Port welcomes the Libertad on her first visit to Irish shores since before the pandemic. The Libertad is a magnificent vessel and one of the finest tall ships at sea. I would encourage people in the city to take a trip to Berth 18 and visit the ship over the weekend. Argentina’s naval history has deep roots in Ireland and the Libertad’s visit provides the public with a unique opportunity to learn more about this fascinating piece of history.”

Moored at Berth 18, Dublin 2, just east of the 3Arena and the Tom Clarke Bridge, members of the public can hop on board and inspect this majestic vessel up close with 289 crew on board.  Pic. Robbie ReynoldsMoored at Berth 18, Dublin 2, just east of the 3Arena and the Tom Clarke Bridge, members of the public can hop on board and inspect this majestic vessel up close with 289 crew on board.  Photo: Robbie Reynolds

Built in the Rio Santiago shipyards in Buenos Aires, the Libertad was launched in May 1956. In 1966, she set a record for the fasting crossing of the North Atlantic using only sail propulsion (with a time of eight days and 12 hours) between Cape Race, Canada and the English Channel – a record that still stands today.

Published in Tall Ships
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Dublin Port Company has today, in co-operation with all seven unitised terminal operators at Dublin Port, launched a new port-wide safety initiative called Dublin SafePort.

The seven participating terminal operators are Dublin Ferryport Terminals, Doyle Shipping Group, Irish Ferries, P&O Ferries, Peel Ports Group (MTL), Seatruck Ferries and Stena Line. Together, they account for an estimated 75% of port workers on the estate.

The purpose of the initiative is to support and foster an enhanced safety culture among port workers which will see Dublin Port Company and the seven terminal operators increase their collaboration on standardising safety practices across the 260-hectare estate. 

New Road Safety Campaign in Dublin Port

A key part of Dublin SafePort is the roll out of ongoing safety awareness campaigns to promote a safer working port for all. The first kicks off today to promote road safety in Dublin Port. As part of the campaign, DPC teams will be on the ground to engage with road users on driver behaviour, safety etiquette, speed limits and significant changes to the port’s internal road network following major upgrade works.

A map of the new internal road network showing traffic flows, speed limits and other essential driver information has been launched today as part of the campaign and will be made available to port users including the thousands of HGV drivers who move through the port weekly.

Road Safety Authority Shuttle Bus Visit

Today also sees Dublin Port host the Road Safety Authority (RSA)’s Shuttle Bus, giving port workers a chance to interact with the campaign. On board the Shuttle, port workers can practice their driving and hazard perception skills in state-of-the-art simulators; experience first-hand the dangers of driving and texting and driver fatigue; and try out the brake reaction timer to see how driving environments and speed affect braking distances and learn about tyre safety.

New Internal Road Network – Main Works Complete

The focus on road safety follows completion of the main phase of Dublin Port’s internal roads project to upgrade and reconfigure the port’s internal road network. This includes the creation and upgrade of nearly four kilometres of road within the north port area, as well as major improvements to key junctions to increase capacity and flexibility of use, improving the existing network in advance of predicted increases in cargo traffic. Improved routes for cyclists and pedestrians are also being provided as part of the roads projects with an objective of having active travel needs fully met throughout the north port area by the end of next year.

The latest trade figures show Dublin Port volumes have returned to the record levels achieved in 2019 pre-pandemic and pre-Brexit.

The investment in roads, in active travel and the launch of Dublin SafePort are important steps in the safe development of Dublin Port in line with Masterplan 2040.

New Unified Ferry Terminal & 20km/h Speed Limits

Coinciding with the road safety campaign, a new 20km/h speed limit now applies at Dublin Port’s new Unified Ferry Terminal (UFT) which has recently come into use, replacing the previous system of separate entry and check-in points for vehicles boarding the Irish Ferries and Stena Line ferries. This is in addition to the 20km/h speed limit already applicable in the Common User Areas, some of the busiest and most densely populated parts of the port. DPC teams will be engaging with drivers on the 20km/h speed limits in both areas over the coming months to promote awareness and adherence.

Commenting on the launch of Dublin SafePort, Eamonn O’Reilly, Chief Executive of Dublin Port Company, said; “A port-wide safety culture is essential in a port as busy as Dublin"

“Today’s launch of Dublin SafePort is the result of extensive collaboration and alignment with all seven unitised terminal operators to ensure Dublin Port is a safe port for all who work and visit. By working together, we have created a single, unifying safety initiative that enhances port safety culture and practice for the long term.

“Now that the main works on our internal road network are complete, it’s time to kickstart our first campaign with a spotlight on road safety at Dublin Port this summer. We’ll be working with all port users ashore and afloat and supporting HGV drivers to understand the new internal road network.

“We are grateful for the support of key stakeholders, including An Garda Síochána, the Road Safety Authority and the HSA as this campaign gets underway. We look forward to working together as one team under Dublin SafePort.”

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During its 1,200 and more years of active trading, the Port of Dublin has successfully emerged from many adversities to maintain its role as Ireland's premier trading hub. Despite all the international frustrations to smooth trade and the pandemic problems in everyday commerce in recent years, Chief Executive Eamonn O'Reilly reports this morning that trade volumes have almost recovered to pre-pandemic and pre-Brexit levels

Overall port volumes for the first six months of the year grew by +10.1% to 18.6 million gross tonnes and the number of ship arrivals increased by +150 to 3,694 versus the same period last year. The increase is a result of two strong performing quarters, with volumes up +13.7% in Q1 2022 and +7.0% in Q2 2022.

Four-fifths of Dublin Port’s cargo volumes are in the Ro-Ro and Lo-Lo modes and the number of trailers and containers that passed through Dublin Port in the first half of 2022 increased year-on-year by +7.6% to 742,000.

Compared to the first half of 2019, trailer and container volumes are only 5,700 or -0.8% lower than they were pre-pandemic and pre-Brexit. For context, the following figures have been compared to the first six months of 2019 to provide a clearer picture of the trends emerging post-pandemic and post-Brexit, with 2019 the busiest year on record for trade at Dublin Port.

Bulk commodity volumes increased by +20.0% to 3.5 million tonnes and, within this, petroleum imports increased by +25.6% to 2.3 million tonnes. At this level, petroleum imports are +4.3% higher than they were in the first half of 2019.

Similarly, Bulk Solid volumes (mainly animal feed) grew by +10.7% to 1.1 million tonnes and are +6.5% ahead of 2019 levels.

Trade vehicle imports declined by -3.6% to 47,000 in the first half of 2022 and are -23.7% behind the levels of 2019 due to the impact of the loss of lands given over to State services for border control facilities post Brexit.

Ferry traffic volumes recovered strongly during the first half of 2022 with passenger numbers more than doubling to 671,000 and tourist vehicle numbers more than trebling to 196,000.

However, compared to 2019, passenger numbers are -18.7% behind and tourist vehicle numbers are -15.9% lower than they were three years ago.

Commenting on the H1 2022 figures, Dublin Port’s Chief Executive, Eamonn O’Reilly, said:

“The first half trading results this year are the first opportunity for us to assess trends in Dublin Port’s volumes after two years of disruption caused by the pandemic and Brexit and what we are seeing is a return of the strong volume growth which has characterised Dublin Port for decades. This is driven by population growth as confirmed in the recent census. More people means more trade and more trade means greater volumes through Dublin Port.

“While overall port tonnages are -3.7% behind where they were in 2019, the number of containers and trailers passing through Dublin Port is less than one per cent behind. Additionally, bulk commodity imports such as petroleum and animal feed grew strongly in the first six months of the year and are actually ahead of their 2019 levels by +5.7%.

“The pattern we saw post-Brexit where the average cargo load per container and trailer reduced by -4.2% is now an established reality. It is a permanent inefficiency in logistics supply chains caused by the reintroduction of border controls on imports into Ireland from the UK. This is putting greater pressure on port lands as trade volumes climb back to record levels.

“We were fortunate that the investments we had been making under Masterplan 2040 in recent years gave Dublin Port the capacity it needed to cater for the large switch in volumes from Great Britain to Continental Europe. We have invested €500 million over the last ten years and will invest a further €500 million in the next five years alone to keep pace with the growth we are anticipating now that the long-run growth trends we have seen over many decades have re-established themselves.

“We have multiple planning consents in place already and are preparing to bring the third and final Masterplan project – the 3FM Project – to An Bord Pleanála next year to ensure that Dublin Port can develop the critical national infrastructure that will be needed on the Poolbeg Peninsula if a national port capacity deficit is to be avoided in the next decade. Big infrastructure takes a long time to plan and we have, as a matter of policy, always started early.”

H1 2022 Trade Results

H1 2022 Trade Results

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Brexit has been a significant driver of change for Dublin Port as an increase in direct trade with the continent has accelerated the need for offsite capacity.

Dublin Port Company’s head of property Cormac Kennedy spoke to about this new direction focused on the development of the Dublin Inland Port at Kilshane Cross, close to Dublin Airport.

As previously reported on, the two-phase project is intended to serve as a container depot that will free up space at the main port for expanded core usage — in particular unaccompanied Lo/Lo traffic bypassing the UK land bridge to European ports.

Kennedy says the first phase as been so busy that Dublin Port Company is ramping up its leasing plans to fill more of its approximately 22-hectare capacity — with 3.2 hectares of yard space expected to become available early next year.

“The port will reach its maximum capacity of 77 million tonnes throughput per annum by 2040,” Kennedy said, “and servicing that will require maximising the capacity of the port.” has more on the story HERE.

Published in Dublin Port
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