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Old January 18th, 2010, 04:46 PM   #521
transport21
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M18 Gort to Crusheen January Updates:

The R460 overbridge is open to traffic, slightly surprised how narrow the overbridge is for a regional road near an urban area.


Looking North from the R460 overbridge, some CBM down as mentioned on a previous post


Looking south from the R460 overbridge


Gortavoher overbridge opened to traffic


Looking north from Gortavoher overbridge


Looking south from Gortavoher overbridge


Looking north from Shanaglish overbridge


Looking south from Shanaglish overbridge
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Old January 18th, 2010, 10:53 PM   #522
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Nice piccys - thanks!

Update pics of N18 junction on N7 Limerick Shannon Tunnel scheme

Pics by Chris_533976


Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris_533976 View Post
Here are some bad pictures from the car of the N18 junction.









Its quite impressive

Quote:
PLANS are being finalised in Limerick for the biggest simulated emergency exercise every carried out in this country.

Hundreds of firefighters, gardaí, ambulance and medical personnel will take part in a planned accident in the new €660 million tunnel under the Shannon, which is now nearing completion.

The tunnel, which was due to open in September, is now likely to open by June, allowing up to 16,000 cars a day to by-pass Limerick city when travelling on the western corridor, linking Cork, Kerry, Limerick, Clare and the West.

However, before it opens it will have to undergo a huge emergency drill to comply with new legislation on tunnel safety.

The exercise will be the final part of the safety process which entails a "book of evidence" being completed showing that the tunnel ticks the rigorous safety rules.

Twenty firefighters from Limerick and Clare have travelled to Switzerland to undergo special training in tunnel rescues and have been accredited to give the same course to their colleagues.

The tunnel is a key element of Limerick’s new Southern Ring Road, a 9.7km four-lane highway. The tunnel runs for 900m, of which 675m will be under the Shannon.

The tunnel connects the southern side of the Shannon near the cement factory in Mungret to the northern riverside near the Radisson Hotel on the Ennis Road.

Tom King, managing director Direct Route, builders of the tunnel, said up to 200 people, including 120 fire-fighters, will take part in the simulated emergency which they hope to carry out in May.

He said: "There are huge logistics involved in getting 200 people from all the emergency services for the one exercise and we are working on May 21."


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Old January 23rd, 2010, 10:49 PM   #523
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Quote:
'Bottomless' bog delays road plan
By Barry Duggan


Monday January 11 2010

A MAJOR road will not be opened until the end of this year -- more than 15 months behind schedule -- because of a 'bottomless' bog.

The Limerick-Nenagh N7 dual carriageway was due to have been completed in May of last year, but the National Roads Authority (NRA) said it would not be finished until the end of this year because of unforeseen delays.

The 38km route will cost the taxpayer €424m, but the cost of having to construct the route over a seemingly endless bog near the Limerick-Tipperary border will have to be borne by the contractors Bothar Hibernian.

It is understood that tens of thousands of steel-reinforced concrete piles have been driven into Drominboy Bog at Lisnagry to support the road at a cost of millions of euro.

Only a small section of the route traverses the bog, which locals claim is "bottomless".

Local tales include heavy machinery being swallowed by the bog, which is able to absorb huge amounts of rain.

As a result, Sean O'Neill of the NRA said the final 15km of the road would not be completed until the end of the year. He said the problems presented by the rural bog were "the major engineering challenge".

Challenge

"The contractor has to deal with that implication," Mr O'Neill said.

"There is a challenge in the bog area, but that is a known condition. It's not like the bog showed up yesterday. We defer to the contractor as it's their responsibility to get the job done."

Mr O'Neill said that the NRA anticipated that major sections of the route would be open by March.

The project consists of 28km motorway standard and the widening of the Nenagh bypass to dual carriageway standard.

The route, which is hoped will ease traffic congestions in the Mid-West region, has been hindered in recent years over payments to local contractors, staff lay-offs and engineering challenges.

- Barry Duggan

Irish Independent


-------------------------------------------------------------------------


The NRA has put junction layouts for some motorways on it's website. They can be viewed here

http://www.nra.ie/JunctionLayoutsProjectVideos/
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Old January 28th, 2010, 07:11 PM   #524
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M7 Nenagh to Limerick photos

The first batch is the Birdhill interchange link road

Trees were being planted and general landscaping was done along here when I passed











Some of the mainline, only a few weeks before opening now














Notice the rest area on the one below


Approaching the Birdhill interchange


Nenagh bypass open with motorway restrictions
The opened section with motorway restrictions









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Old February 3rd, 2010, 01:27 AM   #525
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Furet over on boards.ie posted a picture of a map of Ireland on the new Collins road Atlas. Some schemes are not opened but most of it is. Gives a good idea on how the motorway network is now coming together:

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Old February 3rd, 2010, 11:10 AM   #526
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Quote:

Great map. I hadn't realised how centralised Ireland's motorway network is; all roads lead to Dublin it seems.

Are there any plans for a central North-South route to decentralise the network, or can the current roads handle Ireland's North-South traffic?
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Old February 3rd, 2010, 12:02 PM   #527
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Yeah M20-M18-M17 is planned and partially U/C from Cork via Limerick and Galway to Sligo.
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Old February 3rd, 2010, 03:16 PM   #528
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Yeah the Atlantic Corridor(western north-south route) is being upgraded. There will be no major route upgrades through the midlands(apart from the M6) as there is not enough urban areas or population to justify it. The north to south route through there is mainly secondary roads which may be realigned with bypasses and upgraded to standard single carriageway in the future.

The N/M18 (Limerick-Galway) by June will have:
  • 44km of motorway from Shannon to Gort
  • 23km of dual carrigeway from Limerick to Shannon
The rest of the route (Gort to Galway motorway via M6) is bundled in with a 3 level stack at the M6 junction, M17 to Tuam and a reduced dual carrigeway bypass of Tuam into a PPP scheme. This is going to cost around €700 million.



Heres a map of the scheme




Here is the two consortia shortlisted to construct it. Roadbridge have a good record lately in finishing these schemes well ahead of schedule and have teamed up with Sisk on many occasions. It's still hard to know whether this will get the funding given how bad the lending market is at the minute.



Quote:
BAM Balfour Beatty BAM PPP
Balfour Beatty Capital Ltd


Direct Route Allied Irish Bank
Strabag SE
John Sisk & Sons (Holdings) Ltd
Roadbridge
Lagan Construction Limited
The proposed junction where the M18 runs over the M6 is going to be a 3 level stack instead of a proper freeflow interchange. On from that junction the M17 starts.

AADT levels of the proposed 3 level stack(M17/M18/M6) junction




The N17 (Galway-Sligo) north of Tuam is adequate from Ballindine to Charlestown. The rest of the route is poor with windy reduced single carrigeway.

N20 (Cork-Limerick)
  • 10 km of motorway from Limerick to Patrickswell
  • 88km of single carrigeway

Some of this road is very poor for a national primary linking the second and third largest cities in the republic. Mallow to Cork is good standard wide S2 but from Mallow to Croom the road is bad with reduced windy single carrigeway.


Below is the a section of the 10km M20 motorway from Patrickswell to Limerick.





The rest of the M20 is pushed back on the PPP list which is very surprising given how dangerous the Croom-Mallow section road is.
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Old February 3rd, 2010, 10:19 PM   #529
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And if you look at old maps, at least part of the current N20 hasnt been realigned since the 1800s.
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Old February 4th, 2010, 12:20 AM   #530
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Ach! Don't don't don't join the two motorways with a stacked roundabout - short term cost savings, long term headache.
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Old February 4th, 2010, 02:47 AM   #531
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Quote:
Originally Posted by niterider View Post
Ach! Don't don't don't join the two motorways with a stacked roundabout - short term cost savings, long term headache.
Not so much in this case. The proposed figures give the impression that this junction is rather overdesigned. Even a flat roundabout would have coped with the amount of traffic. So, not much headache in the long term.
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Old February 4th, 2010, 11:03 AM   #532
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The 3 level stack has been debated constantly on the boards.ie website given how underpowered it could be in the future decades to come. A regular poster Spacetweek got this email back from the NRA re the junction

Quote:
Dear Mr. xxx,

In your email of the 16th December, 2009, you expressed 3 main concerns regarding the design of the junction and also commented on the proposed Motorway Service Area access:

1. ‘Underpowered’ – You appear concerned that large traffic volumes on the M6 Galway to Dublin motorway and the M17/M18 Limerick to Tuam Motorway will limit the capacity of the junction;
2. ‘Difficult to upgrade’ – You also expressed concerns that the proposed junction will create difficulties if the junction was to be upgraded to a full free-flow junction such as a cloverleaf, partial cloverleaf, 4-level stack or similar; and
3. ‘An apparent attempt to save money by using a small land footprint’.

In May 2004, McCarthy Hyder Consultants Ltd in association with PJ Tobin & Co Ltd, prepared a ‘Junction Strategy Report’ to assess junction options for the 3no. junctions along the N18 Oranmore to Gort Scheme – namely Gort Junction, Kiltiernan Junction and Rathmorrissy junction. For the Rathmorrissy Junction there were 6no. options considered, including, dumbbell type junction (two level), oval roundabout junction (two level), oval roundabout junction with free flow slip lanes (three level), free flow clover leaf junction, roundabout junction (three level) with free flow left turn lanes (360m diameter) and roundabout junction (three level) with free flow left turn lanes (240m diameter). It was concluded in the report that the roundabout junction (three level) with free flow left turn lanes (240m diameter) be recommended as the preferred junction and it was this junction that was taken forward to preliminary design and through to the EIS and approved by An Bord Pleanála. While land take issues were considered in the junction selection, it was not the determining criteria. Junction performance and safety issues were also assessed in conjunction with the overall cost of the junction.

The proposed Rathmorrissy Junction comprises a three level junction with:

1. The M6 Galway to Dublin Motorway unimpeded through the junction on the lower level;

2. The M18/M17 Limerick to Tuam Motorway unimpeded through the junction on the upper level;

3. Free-Flow unimpeded left turn slip lanes on all four arms:

i. M18 from Limerick – M6 to Galway;
ii. M6 from Galway – M17 to Tuam;
iii. M17 from Tuam – M6 Dublin;
iv. M6 from Dublin – M18 to Limerick.

4. Slip Roads off the mainline motorways to a roundabout on the middle level serving the right turn traffic movements of:

i. M18 from Limerick – M6 to Dublin;
ii. M6 from Galway – M18 to Limerick;
iii. M17 from Tuam – M6 to Galway;
iv. M6 from Dublin – M17 to Tuam.

The traffic flows (at year of opening) published in the EIS for the M17 Galway to Tuam scheme is summarised below:

[see attached image]

You make reference to 50,000 vehicles per day (at opening) passing through the junction, however it should be noted it is only the right turn traffic movements that will interact with the proposed roundabout junction. In addition, the right turning peak hour flows will be tidal, where by in the AM, the peak right turn will be the M17 from Tuam – M6 to Galway and in the PM, the peak right turn will be the M6 from Galway – M18 to Limerick.

An analysis of the operation of the roundabout has been undertaken using ARCADY (a widely accepted computer program used to model the operation of roundabouts). The analysis indicated that in the peak hour in the design year (20 years after opening), the roundabout will comfortably accommodate the predicted traffic flows with ample spare capacity. In the event that traffic flows do increase significantly greater than those predicted, the layout of the roundabout will accommodate traffic signals (should such remedial measures be required to improve traffic management) since the spacing between adjacent entry / exits are sufficiently large to accommodate vehicle storage.

We note your comment that the roundabout junction was only specified to provide access to a proposed Motorway Service Area. However the decision on a possible motorway service area was made well after the decision to continue with the roundabout junction (three level), as demonstrated by the timeline listed below:

· May 2004 – Issue of N18 Oranmore to Gort – Junction Strategy Report – recommending the roundabout junction (three level) with free flow left turn lanes (240m diameter) as the preferred junction arrangement;

· In 2005 the Authority was requested by the Minister for Transport to undertake a review of policy with regard to the provision of service areas on motorway and high quality dual carriageway sections of the national roads network;

· The Authority announced in September, 2006, the decision to secure directly, through the PPP mechanism, on-line service areas was accompanied by a map indicating the intended locations of the priority service area facilities to be procured on the major inter-urban routes, including the M6 at the M6/M17/M18 junction.

· In October 2007, the NRA published ‘Policy for the Provision of Service Areas on Motorways and High Quality Dual Carriageways’ and included in this document was a preferred service area location at the M6/M17/M18 junction;

I trust the above addresses your queries and concerns.

Regards
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Old February 4th, 2010, 10:28 PM   #533
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Hmmm. Roundabouts are great for moderately trafficked routes - traffic lights are more efficient when increased traffic levels undo the advantages roundabouts provide.

Roundabouts between motorways cause needless congestion compared to a free flow route. So, IF traffic levels increase to a level that would cause congestion, as the letter above admits, traffic lights may be installed (as widespread in the UK with awful results)....then you're left with a bas*ardised junction.

It happened with the M50, and they had to re-engineer junctions to free-flow
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Old February 4th, 2010, 11:37 PM   #534
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M50 is quite different than this interchange in rural western Ireland. Galway isn't exactly a metropolis. If worst comes to worst, they can make a flyover from Galway to the north. I know big roundabouts that have approaches that carry 60,000 AADT.
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Old February 8th, 2010, 02:57 AM   #535
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Quote:
M20 Cork to Limerick motorway to commence this year

Relief has been expressed by commercial interest in both Cork and Limerick at the news that work will begin this year on the long-awaited M20.


The new 82km motorway when completed will connect Cork to Limerick and is according to Minister for Trade and Commerce, Billy Kelleher essential for the future economic development of the Cork region. The news of the commencement of this project was warmly welcomed as the roads grant allocation for 2010 was severely slashed leaving many proposed projects sidelined.

The Department of Transport confirmed yesterday (Tuesday) that an allocation of €9m had been set aside for the first phase of the project between Blarney and Croom in Co. Limerick.

As the green roads flicker out the blue ignites...
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Old February 8th, 2010, 07:38 PM   #536
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Terrible journalism Theres no way at all that this will start this year, absolutely no chance. This money is for CPOing and I'd be surprised if there are diggers on the ground before 2015 on the M20.
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Old February 9th, 2010, 03:19 AM   #537
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Yeah it's only going to the CPO stage. Another couple of years and hopefully there will be diggers on site.

Probably worth saying the Nenagh-Birdhill section of the M7 is due to open Thursday Feb 18th
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Old February 12th, 2010, 12:52 AM   #538
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Newry Bypass


SHEEPBRIDGE JUNCTION






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Old February 12th, 2010, 01:06 AM   #539
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Great pics; thanks for sharing them!

Great to see this almost complete. It'll make the journey time between Dublin and Belfast so much quicker!

Went up north last summer and the tailbacks at the border were a nightmare due to the roadworks, so I'd imagine it'll make a huge difference for people who make the trip more frequently...
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Old February 12th, 2010, 10:37 AM   #540
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Isn't that in Northern Ireland? (a.k.a. United Kingdom)?
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