The A1 is a major route in Northern Ireland. It runs from Belfast via Lisburn and Banbridge to the border (with the Republic of Ireland) south of Newry, from where the road continues to Dublin, becoming the N1 road and M1 motorway.
The A1 is not yet fully dual carriageway and of those parts that are dual carriageway, many junctions are built to a relatively low specification as they necessitate right-turning movements across a busy central reservation. The Belfast-Dublin route is now, since 2 August 2007, motorway or high standard dual carriageway from Dublin Port to the Cloghogue roundabout, located at the southern-most point of the Newry By-pass. By the end of 2009, the remaining sections north of the border will be upgraded to dual-carriageway standard, from Newry to Loughbrickland, County Down.
Further measures envisaged to improve safety and journey times, include a central reservation safety barrier be to constructed from the A1's junction with the M1 at Sprucefield to the end of the present stretch of Dual Carriageway at Loughbrickland. This will involve the closing of many of the dual carriageway's central cross-over points.
The scheme to complete the improvements to the A1, (the dualling of the road between Beech Hill and Cloghoge) is currently going through statutory processes and construction is expected to commence in 2008. This scheme will involve the building of a largely off line new dual carriageway and includes provision for a central reservation safety barrier, hard shoulder and a number of grade separated junctions.