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Dublin: 5°C Thursday 21 October 2021

Diversions, shutdowns and traffic restrictions: How the royal visit will affect us

Gardaí announce extent of traffic and parking restrictions, with whole sections of Dublin and Cork cities to be temporarily closed off.

Image: James Horan/Photocall Ireland

GARDAÍ HAVE RELEASED more details of the road closures and traffic restrictions which will be imposed in Dublin, Kildare, Tipperary and Cork for the visit of Queen Elizabeth II next week.

A huge security operation has been planned to accommodate the Queen, who will arrive in Ireland on the morning of Tuesday  May 17 and leave in the afternoon on Friday May 20. Speaking at a press briefing at Dublin Castle today, Garda Supt John Gilligan stressed that traffic restrictions will remain “fluid” in response to security concerns, and full details of all closures will only be released one day in advance.

Gardaí will be searching pedestrians around the restricted areas. However, Supt Gilligan said people with medical appointments will not be prevented from attending hospitals or clinics. There will be real-time traffic updates on the Garda website and on their Twitter account.


Barriers restricting parking are already in place around Parnell Square in the north of the city. From 6am on Saturday May 14 until Friday 20, parking will be restricted or closed completely on almost 40 streets around the city centre, including the north and south quays, Phoenix Park, Pearse Street, Mountjoy Square, Thomas Street, D’Olier and Westmoreland Streets, Gardiner Street, Dame Street and Christchurch Place. The full list of streets affected is available here.

On Tuesday May 17, O’Connell Street and Parnell Square East will be closed to all traffic from 7am until late in the day. The area around College Green and D’Olier Street will be closed off from 12 noon until around 5pm. The north and south quays, as well as bridges across the river, will be closed to traffic from around 1.30-2pm until around 5pm.

There will also be other closures and restrictions around the city centre as the Queen visits first the Garden of Remembrance at Parnell Square, then Trinity College.

Dublin Zoo is closed all day and Chesterfield Avenue – the main artery through the Phoenix Park – will be closed off from around 1.30-2pm until around 5pm, in addition to further closures in the area as the Queen visits Áras an Uachtaráin.

The N4 entering the city at Chapelizod will be closed from 1.30-2pm onwards. Diversions will be in place to take drivers around the restrictions by travelling north and south on the M50.

From 9am on Wednesday May 18, there will be closures and restrictions around Thomas Street and the north and south quays as the Queen visits the Guinness Storehouse. Further restrictions are expected as she travels from there to Government Buildings.

There will again be closures on the N4 around Chapelizod, with diversions in place.

Wednesday will also see some disruptions due to the Europa League final between FC Porto and SC Braga, which kicks off at the Aviva Stadium at 7.45pm. Herbert Park will be closed to traffic from 7am, with further closures around the stadium as the day progresses. Full details are available here.

Dublin City Council are advising commuters to take public transport wherever possible. Dublin Bus, Bus Eireann and Luas will  be operating a full service, although buses will be diverted around restricted areas. Dart and Commuter Rail services will also run as normal, except that there will be no service between Connolly and Pearse on Wednesday from 10.45am to 11am, 2pm until 3pm, and 3.30pm until 4pm; and on Thursday from 5.30pm to 6.15pm and 7.45pm to 8.15pm. Drumcondra Station will be closed on Wednesday from 10.30am to 4pm.

No fewer than 17 Dublin Bikes stations around the city will be closed from 2pm on Monday May 16 until Wednesday May 25 – covering the duration of the Queen’s visit as well as that of US President Barack Obama the following week. Here’s the full list of stations affected.


Gardai will be slowing traffic on the M7 and M9 on Thursday May 19 as the Queen visits the National Stud in Tully, Co Kildare. Some motorway exits will also be closed periodically between 9.30am and 3.30pm – from exit 5 to exit 12 on the M7, and exit 2 on the M9.

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There will be traffic diversions around Kildare town from 9am to 1pm, with the R413 Kilcullen to The Curragh road closed to through traffic from 9.30am to 3.30pm. Diversions will be marked at access roads to the R413 around Kildare, Newbridge, The Curragh Camp, Athgarvan and Kilcullen.


From 6pm on Thursday May 19, junction 7 will be closed on the M8 motorway, with access to Cashel from junctions 8 and 9 only. It will reopen in the early afternoon of Friday May 20.

Two cordons will be set up around Cashel from 6pm on Thursday. Access through the outer cordon – roughly 7km outside the town – will be limited to residents only. The inner cordon will be closed completely.

There will also be cordons around Fethard and Killenaule from 6pm Thursday to 2pm Friday, but these will allow for normal business to continue in the towns and local traffic will be let through.


Several roads in the city will be closed completely from 10am on Friday May 20, including the city centre areas of South Link Road (inbound), Station Road, Anglesea Street, South mall, Grand Parade, Patrick Street, Academy Street, Washington Street, Sheares Street and Dyke Parade. There will be no parking in these areas from 6pm on Thursday.

Between 12 noon and 4pm on Friday, there will be no access for pedestrians to Princess Street Upper and Washington Street from the junction with Grand Parade to South Main Street. Grand Parade will also be closed from the junction of Oliver Plunkett Street to Patrick Street; from St Augustine Street to Tuckey Street, and from the junction of Tuckey Street and Grand Parade to the Electric bar on South Mall.

About the author:

Michael Freeman

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