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Wednesday 1 February 2023 Dublin: 8°C
# what's that for?
The strange mysteries of the M50
In which the National Roads Authority answers some questions we never knew we needed to ask…

EVER DRIVEN PAST something that looks like this – and wondered what it’s for?

tot Google Maps Google Maps


How about this then… Ever wondered why M50 junction numbers go straight from number 7 (Lucan) to 9 (Clondalkin) without making any provision for a Junction 8?

Why can’t the M50 be more like this lovely American road?

stg Garrett / Flickr-Creative Commons Garrett / Flickr-Creative Commons / Flickr-Creative Commons


The National Roads Authority’s Sean O’Neill joined us in the newsroom this week for a live Q & A.

It was pretty educational.

We touched – of course – on subjects like the mooted Cork-Limerick motorway (not happening anytime soon) and the Newlands Cross Flyover (open, but still some surrounding work to be done).

However, some of the most interesting questions were about the ‘mysteries’ above (they were mysteries to us, at least).

First up, the explanation for that half-built concrete structure…

This was the question reader Donal Daly sent us:

What’s the story behind this concrete column on the M50 near Blanchardstown? It was erected during the M50 upgrade.

Apparently, there are more like them around the country too…

Video / YouTube

And on that mysterious missing Junction 8?

Andy Morrissey sent in the question.

Here’s the answer:

Video / YouTube

If you want to watch the whole thing, you can do so here. (We also had Barry Kenny of Irish Rail in on the day.)

By the way – if you have any suggestions for future Q&A guests, let us know in the comments section below.

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