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Old December 6th, 2009, 04:39 PM   #461
DanielFigFoz
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I last went to Ireland in 2004, Ireland has changed so much since then. Even since I started this thread, I can see that the motorway network has gotten significantly larger, and seeing where this small country came from, it is very impressive.
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Old December 6th, 2009, 04:46 PM   #462
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Yes indeed, Daniel. I wonder why the Irish manage to expand their motorway system, while the British motorway network is at a standstill for decades. Is there such a difference in mentality?

Of course, Britain already has a large motorway network, and Ireland didn't, but Ireland also doesn't have much inhabitants. I'd say it's quite impressive what they all build for a relatively small population and few international through traffic.
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Old December 6th, 2009, 05:02 PM   #463
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
Yes indeed, Daniel. I wonder why the Irish manage to expand their motorway system, while the British motorway network is at a standstill for decades. Is there such a difference in mentality?

Of course, Britain already has a large motorway network, and Ireland didn't, but Ireland also doesn't have much inhabitants. I'd say it's quite impressive what they all build for a relatively small population and few international through traffic.
I think that the problem in Britian, and this is not meant to sound un-democratic, but the public will just not allow motorways to be built. There is a video on the internet about some people fighting against building a motorway across northern Wales. I just don't get this. People say that motorways will destroy local areas, where as infact it will help preserve local areas by diverting traffic from local areas. When the Republic became independent, the Irish, understably, wanted reform in many ways, but only now they have the money for this, whereas in the UK, there was not such a call for this.
This is certainly not all the reasons for the huge difference.
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Old December 6th, 2009, 07:46 PM   #464
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanielFigFoz View Post
I think that the problem in Britian, and this is not meant to sound un-democratic, but the public will just not allow motorways to be built. There is a video on the internet about some people fighting against building a motorway across northern Wales. I just don't get this. People say that motorways will destroy local areas, where as infact it will help preserve local areas by diverting traffic from local areas. When the Republic became independent, the Irish, understably, wanted reform in many ways, but only now they have the money for this, whereas in the UK, there was not such a call for this.
This is certainly not all the reasons for the huge difference.
I'd say the biggest barrier is political - every party is pushing their environmental credentials to such a point that advocating substantial roadbuilding is akin to political suicide. Despite that fact such schemes could improve the environment of the areas they would by-pass, the impact on the areas affected by the route gets priority, even if these can be mitigated significantly. Funnily enough many of the protest groups are well meaning campaign groups rather than locals who may wish for such a route!

Congestion hotspots etc are occasionally 'improved upon'. Town by-passes/relief roads and dual carriageways etc do get built here and there, but 99% of the time not motorway designated, in order to allow all road users to use the road.

Add to the fact that the nature of the population makeup is entirely different - the vast majority live in highly urbanised settlements linked by an existing motorway network which is generally of high quality, although over-strained and which needs further 'linking up', and even more substantial dual carraigeway network which tends to go unnoticed unless it's coloured blue on a map.

The Irish network is developing like the UK network did, but at a much faster pace and has the benefits of hindsight and lower population so hopefully it will avoid many of the mistakes here.
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Old December 7th, 2009, 03:04 AM   #465
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
Ireland also doesn't have much inhabitants. I'd say it's quite impressive what they all build for a relatively small population and few international through traffic.
I agree Chris. The AADT on most of the new motorway builds does not require motorway standard road at all.

However the cost of upgrading these awful routes before construction to WS2/2+2 over motorway build were marginal. There was also the advantage of these routes being future proofed. During the 90's and early 00's we made several mistakes of just upgrading sections of these routes to S2 bypasses which have become heavily congested. They are now being upgraded again to motorway offline.

An advantage Ireland has over the British motorway network is alternative routes. In England the main north to south points are mainly accessed by either the M4 or M6 which have required several widening schemes in the last few decades. Cork to Dublin for example can be access by the M20(whenever built)/M7 or N25/M9 or N25/M11(N11) if the M8 is closed to traffic.

Ireland is making good trides in its motorway network although it will take the M20 and M17/M18 to become the sort of network that would be described as extensive.

Zero MSA's is a big concern though.
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Old December 7th, 2009, 08:44 PM   #466
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_533976 View Post
I know you're gonna hate me for saying this, but "The Rest" have been put on indefinate hold as there is no money to build them.
Don't be such a naysayer Chris!

Why would they cost any money to build? They'd make money from shop rent etc. so should be able to pay for themselves?
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Old December 7th, 2009, 10:16 PM   #467
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spacetweek View Post
Don't be such a naysayer Chris!

Why would they cost any money to build? They'd make money from shop rent etc. so should be able to pay for themselves?
In the Irish model for these MSAs, the NRA acquires the land and builds the facilities. They then earn the money back on the drip from the concessionaires. The problem is getting the up-front cash to fund the initial build.

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Old December 9th, 2009, 02:49 AM   #468
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..

Quote:
Port Tunnel charges to drop


TIM O'BRIEN

TOLL PRICES in Dublin Port Tunnel are to drop in the first major review of policy and charges since the tunnel opened three years ago this month.

The NRA announced yesterday that it is to scrap the current three-tier pricing system which costs as much as €12 per single journey, and replace it with a two-tier charging system with a maximum charge of €10, and a minimum of €3.

The €10 charge will apply at morning peak times into the city and at evening peak times out of the city. At all other times the charge is to be €3.

The changes are to come into operation on January 2nd, 2010. The decision to reduce charges was taken by the board of the NRA yesterday. The board said the changes were brought about by a number of significant traffic improvements between the city and the M50.

These include the opening within weeks of the new “freeflow” M1/M50 junction, the completion of a third lane on much of the M50 and this week’s opening of the Samuel Beckett bridge in Dublin city centre.

The move is a major change in policy in relation to Dublin Port Tunnel, as it was initially intended to penalise car usage, in favour of restricting access to lorries travelling between the Port and the M50. While the tariffs have been altered before, the current reduction is a clear signal to private motorists that they are now wanted in the tunnel.
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Old December 9th, 2009, 09:07 PM   #469
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The 2010 budget for road infrastructure

Quote:
Press release 9 December 2009

Minister Dempsey announces €2.787 billion budget for Transport in 2010

€0.92 billion for public transport
€1.72 billion for roads of which
- €1.31 billion for national roads including €37.5million for road safety
- €411 million for upkeep and maintenance of regional and local roads


The Minister for Transport today (9 December) announced the 2010 Estimates provision for his Department:

€2.1 billion for capital investment
€686 million for current expenditure.

The capital provision is down €298 million (12.4 %) on the revised Estimates allocation for 2009.

The underlying provision for current expenditure is down € 60.3 million on the revised 2009 allocation, following implementation of a range of cuts based on the McCarthy Report recommendations.

Following are the principal features of the 2010 Estimates for Transport:

Roads €1,637million

The 2010 provision for the improvement and maintenance of roads is €1.637billion, €280.5million (14.6%) down on the revised 2009 allocation. The details are as follows:

The 2010 capital provision for national roads is €1.115 4billion, €287 million (or 20 %) down on 2009. This allocation will fund the very high level of contractual commitments to complete the five major inter- urban motorways and the M50 upgrade in 2010. Major projects expected to be completed in 2010 include:

M3 Clonee – North of Kells
N7 Nenagh – Limerick
N7 Limerick Tunnel
M7 Castletown – Nenagh
M7/M8 Portlaoise – Cullahill/Castletown
N9 Waterford – Knocktopher
N9 Carlow – Knocktopher
M9 Kilcullen – Carlow
M50 Upgrade Phase 2
Motorway service areas (Tranche 1)

By the end of 2010 we will have completed some 750 km of motorway linking Dublin with the principal cities in the country, reducing journey times, increasing the reliability of journeys and improving road safety. This is a major achievement and reflects great credit on the NRA, local authorities, contractors and consultants. Over €2 billion of private funding has been raised to part fund the investment.

The future priorities for national road investment will be:

· To implement a number of new PPP projects, principally on the Atlantic Road Corridor and the N11,
· To protect the existing investment in national roads, especially national secondaries.

The 2010 provision for the maintenance and improvement of regional and local roads will be €411million, down € 35 million (8%) in line with the McCarthy recommendations. This funding will be used almost exclusively to maintain the fabric of the extensive network of some 90,000 kilometres.


Road Safety €37.5 million

The 2010 provision for road safety is €37.5 million, compared with €37.2 million in 2009. This will help maintain the encouraging downward trend in road accident deaths. As of end November, 218 people had lost their lives in road accidents, down 42 on the same period in 2008. The number of fatalities in 2008, at 279, was itself the lowest on record.


PPP Operational Payments
This is the only area of expenditure showing a significant increase of €43.4 million in 2010. The funding is used to make annual payments to remunerate PPP financing for road projects where the private investment is not remunerated by tolls. The expenditure involved will increase in 2010 as more road PPP projects are implemented.

ENDS

Further information:
Department of Transport Press Office: Tel: (01) 604 1090 / (01) 604 1091


Appendix

Planning and design on rail, light rail & metro projects to railway order.

National Roads PPPs 2010

In Construction
M3 Clonee – North of Kells
N7 Nenagh Limerick
N7 Limerick Tunnel
M7/M8 Portlaise-Culahill/Castletown
M50 Upgare Phase 2
M1 & M4 Motorway Service Areas (Tranche 1)


In Preparation
N17/18 Gort to Tuam At tender stage

N11 Arklow to Rathnew
(including Newlands Cross) At pre-qualification stage

M11 Gorey to Enniscorthy/ Pre-qualification commencing early 2010

N25 New Ross Bypass` (inclusion of New Ross Bypass dependent on outcome of judicial review)

Galway City Outer Bypass Dependent on outcome of judicial review

The NRA are also considering an additional bundle of PPP projects, and progress on these will be determined by availability of funding.
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Old December 9th, 2009, 09:15 PM   #470
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Port Tunnel charges to drop
A good move. Though it's quite steep if you work in the port of Dublin and commute there very day. € 20 per day, 5 days a week, 45 weeks per year = € 4.500 per year added to commuting costs...

I would definitely not use it, just drive through residential streets. It's what the government wants
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Old December 11th, 2009, 07:05 PM   #471
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The Samuel Beckett Bridge on river Liffey in Dublin Officially Opening - Fri 11th Dec.

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Old December 13th, 2009, 01:40 AM   #472
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
A good move. Though it's quite steep if you work in the port of Dublin and commute there very day. € 20 per day, 5 days a week, 45 weeks per year = € 4.500 per year added to commuting costs...

I would definitely not use it, just drive through residential streets. It's what the government wants

I think it has more to do with general deflation then anything sensible

Quote:
Ballinasloe to Galway M6 to open on Friday
ATHLONE ADVERTISER, DECEMBER 11, 2009.
By Triona Doherty
The final 56 kilometres of the M6 motorway, linking Ballinasloe and Galway, is to open next Friday, six months ahead of schedule.

The stretch of road is expected to be open to motorists by the afternoon of next Friday December 18, following the official opening ceremony by Minister for Transport Noel Dempsey that morning.

Once the route is open, motorists will be able to travel from Athlone to Galway in approximately one hour, while it is estimated that journey times between Dublin and Galway will be slashed to two hours.

Originally planned to come on stream in mid-2010, the completion of the country’s newest stretch of motorway has come in approximately six months ahead of schedule.

However members of the public were treated to a sneak preview of the route in recent weeks, when one carriageway was opened to facilitate motorists during the flooding.

“The contractor, Icon, has done a great job. It is a tribute to the contractor and the NRA that the road is to open ahead of schedule, and that it was able to open to motorists in recent weeks,” said a spokesperson for the NRA.

The M6 Galway to Ballinasloe scheme consists of 56 kilometres of dual carriageway between Galway and Ballinasloe, a 7km link to the Loughrea bypass, 32km of side roads, and five grade separated junctions at Glennascaul, Athenry, Carrowkeel, West Ballinasloe, and Tulrush.

Two toll charges will now apply to motorists travelling to and from Dublin, with a charge of €1.90 at a toll plaza at Cappataggle near Ballinasloe, on top of the existing charge of €2.90 at Kinnegad.
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Old December 17th, 2009, 05:25 AM   #473
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2 stretches of motorway will open this weekend

7km of M7 Nenagh motorway (M7 Dublin Limerick)
56km of M6 Dublin to Glaway


The M9 Kilcullen - Carlow will open in January.
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Old December 18th, 2009, 02:04 AM   #474
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Originally Posted by odlum833 View Post
The M9 Kilcullen - Carlow will open in January.
This has been put forward to the original date of next Monday. The minister apparently wanted to keep the motorway locked away until the new year so he could make it to the opening ceremony. There was also talk of local businesses along the current N9 losing money before Christmas.

Eventually after numerous emails and public out-roar Minister Dempsey saw sense and put it back to the original opening day of next Monday.
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Old December 18th, 2009, 02:11 AM   #475
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56km of M6 Dublin to Galway
Some excellent shots from KevR on boards.ie, M6 fully open tomorrow



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Old December 18th, 2009, 02:17 AM   #476
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3 different stretches of motorway will be opening in the space of 5 days from tomorrow :o


M6 54km's
M7 7km's
M9 27km's
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Old December 19th, 2009, 02:18 AM   #477
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Quote:
M6 Galway to Ballinasloe Opens Today




The M6 Galway to Ballinasloe motorway project was officially opened today (18/12/2009) by Minister for Transport, Noel Dempsey, TD. The 56kms motorway opened 4 months ahead of schedule and is on budget. The opening of this section of the M6 completes the Dublin to Galway inter-urban route as outlined in Transport21.

The scheme runs from the outskirts of Galway city to Athenry where it crosses the Galway/Dublin rail line, the Graigabbey River and the Athenry/Limerick rail line. The route then continues southeast to Carrowkeel junction from where the Loughrea link road proceeds south to the Loughrea Bypass. From Carrowkeel junction, the route continues northeast to the proposed Toll Plaza located near Cappataggle. The route then passes north of Aughrim village, continuing east again over the River Suck where ties into the existing M6 east of Ballinasloe. The town that will be bypassed are Ballinasloe, Aughrim, Killreekill, Loughea, Craughwell, and Oranmore

The scheme will:

•Complete the Dublin to Galway inter-urban route
•Reduce travel times from Galway to Ballinasloe by 25minutes
•Increase road safety for drivers
•Improve traffic flow and reduce traffic congestion
•Act as a stimulus for commercial and tourist activity
•Improve internal road infrastructure between and with the regions

Minister for Transport, Noel Dempsey, TD said


"A major milestone has been reached today, not only for the residents and business throughout the Galway and Ballinasloe region, but for the entire country. You can now travel safely from Dublin to Galway on motorway standard road. It is the delivery of this key commitment, outlined under Transport21, which allows for a motorway to connect the east (Dublin) to the west (Galway). Today's opening represents the culmination of years of hard work and dedication, it will offer significant benefits for the entire Western region.''


Peter Malone, Chairman of the National Roads Authority, said

"The opening of the M6 Galway to Ballinalsoe motorway is an historic event because this is the first Major Inter-Urban corridor connecting city to city. From Galway to Dublin we now have motorway/dual carriageway for 194km. The benefits from a road safety standpoint and improved quality of life will be felt by all the residents of the cities, towns, and villages along the entire route. It is great to see first hand this Government’s plan to invest and improve road infrastructure, under Transport 21, come to fruition. Just think, you will now be able to travel from the M50 to Galway city in approximately two hours. It is fantastic for business, tourism and all road users."

www.nra.ie
Map of scheme

http://www.nra.ie/RoadSchemeActivity...p,16520,en.pdf
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Old December 22nd, 2009, 10:35 PM   #478
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The newest section of the M9 between Kilcullen and Carlow (28km) opened yesterday.


Map of new M9 section. The remainder will open next year

http://www.openstreetmap.org/?lat=53...111328&zoom=12
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Old December 23rd, 2009, 03:11 PM   #479
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Some brilliant shots of the new M6 Ballinasloe to Galway thanks to Nath on boards.ie

Approaching Doughiska RAB
image hosted on flickr


N6 Doughiska to J19 Carnmore/Glenascaul
image hosted on flickr


Approaching J19 Carnmore/Glenascaul
image hosted on flickr


Approaching J19 Carnmore/Glenascaul
image hosted on flickr


J19 Carnmore/Glenascaul
image hosted on flickr


Wide median eastbound between J19 and Athenry
image hosted on flickr


Approaching J17 Athenry/Craughwell
image hosted on flickr


J17 Athenry/Craughwell
image hosted on flickr


Approaching J16 Portumna/Loughrea
image hosted on flickr


Toll plaza sign
image hosted on flickr


Approaching toll plaza
image hosted on flickr


Toll plaza
image hosted on flickr


Approaching J14 Ballinasloe East
image hosted on flickr
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Old December 23rd, 2009, 03:36 PM   #480
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Quote:
Originally Posted by transport21 View Post
Some brilliant shots of the new M6 Ballinasloe to Galway thanks to Nath on boards.ie
Great... Didn't know it was a toll road though. Does it have an open toll system (just barriers here and there, no ticket system)? Are other motorways in Ireland tolled as well?
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