Temporary safety measures are being introduced in Dublin's Phoenix Park from next Monday in response to the Covid-19 pandemic and to ensure social distancing can be maintained.

The Office of Public Works (OPW) said the use of the park as a recreational space has significantly increased in recent weeks.

In a statement, the OPW said that current cycling and pedestrian usage "has raised significant new road safety issues not experienced before to this extent and these will be exacerbated with the reintroduction of vehicles" into the park.

It said the measures being introduced "aim to provide the public with a safe place to practice social distancing from each other while they walk, run, exercise and travel by bike and adhere to the two metre (distance) rule".

The OPW said the measures are being introduced in consultation with gardaí.

The temporary measures being introduced include the following:

  • Provision of cocooning space at the Phoenix Park Visitor Centre walled garden from 10am to 1pm daily
  • Provision of priority cocooning car parking at the Phoenix Park Visitor Centre for those cocooning and using the walled garden
  • Repurposing of a portion of the North Road from the Cabra Gate to Garda Headquarters as a 2m-wide footpath
  • Instillation of one-way cycle lanes on the hard shoulder of Chesterfield Avenue to facilitate social distancing
  • Conversion of the current cycle lanes adjacent to Chesterfield Avenue into pedestrian footpaths
  • Opening of car parks at 10am daily from the 18 May in line with Phase One of the Government's road map
  • Dedicated parking areas for those taking early morning exercise
  • Prioritisation of car parking for Dublin Zoo patrons in conjunction with their phased reopening
  • Introduction of pedestrianised and leisure cycle shared space on Kyber Road
  • Reopening of the perimeter vehicular gates at 10am daily from 8 June in line with Phase Two of the road map

The OPW said the measure will be regularly reviewed in line with HSE guidelines and Government advice.