Dubliners have been getting their annual Christmas decorations and presents for the year with the opening of a greenway across the city’s downtown.
Dublin City Council said the €15 million greenway was one of the citys largest ever projects.
It stretches from West Street to South Street and includes a park, cycle paths, walkways, playgrounds, shops and a restaurant and cafe.
It is the first in the city to include bike lanes and pavements, along with new benches, and the first to include a cycle path and park alongside the existing walkway.
The project will be the citywide start of a €130 million programme to create a network of cycle paths across Dublin.
It was started in 2005 by then-Dublin mayor Fergus O’Sullivan and will now be run by Dublin City Council.
The scheme is designed to improve pedestrian safety and reduce accidents.
It will be built in phases from now, with the first phase opening in the early 2020s and the final phase to open in the first half of 2021.
It has been estimated that there are more than 50,000 people cycling in Dublin, many of whom have to walk to work.
There is also a new park next to the Dublin Airport and the city has set up a dedicated cycling and walking pathway on the west side of the river to help people get around.
The city is also planning to invest more than €1.5 million to build a second greenway on the east side of St James’s Square, with a second cycle track at South Street.
The council also plans to build another greenway in the north of the capital, to the south of Ballymore Square, which is to become a pedestrian and cycle route.
It said it was an important step in creating a more healthy city for everyone and said there would be more greenways in the future.
“The new greenway is the culmination of many years of planning and work,” it said.