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Old May 31st, 2010, 09:50 AM   #621
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Highwaycrazy View Post
No its not. I have yet to find it in an English paperback Dictionary. Wikipedia or the equivalent is not an English dictionary because anyone can edit or add words of their own.

Some people invent words of their own but that doesn't mean they form part of a language.
I'm sorry, but you're wrong. Just because a word isn't in common US usage doesn't mean it isn't a valid English word. Besides, pulling a person up on an Internet forum for their English is just bad form.

Some non-editable definitions:

MS Encarta
Oxford English dictionary
Here's a usage in a UK Statutory Instrument
And here's a roads-related usage from Ireland

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Old May 31st, 2010, 03:11 PM   #622
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It's in my dictionary! OED (1999) Hardback edition.

New words are coined all the time in English and other languages. Shakespeare invented thousands of words, some of which didn't catch on, but many which did and are still used today.

Getting back on topic: It's remarkable how quickly Ireland's motorway network has appeared over the last decade or two. I take it there will be cutbacks now, due to the economic crisis. Which projects are likely to be shelved anyone?
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Old May 31st, 2010, 06:25 PM   #623
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well done Irish, wondfull roads !!!! Miles better compared to British where i used to drive for 2 years when i lived in london
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Old May 31st, 2010, 08:48 PM   #624
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Originally Posted by Angelos View Post
well done Irish, wondfull roads !!!! Miles better compared to British where i used to drive for 2 years when i lived in london
Are you sure about that? Many of the local roads in Ireland still leave a lot to be desired, despite significant improvements in some areas in recent years.
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Old June 2nd, 2010, 12:34 PM   #625
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At least Ireland is improving their roads, in a few years they will have a complete motorway network. On the other hard UK has few quality motorways bu they are very congested and many key roads are missing such us South coast motorway , the A1M all the way to edinburgh and A14 is a key route , A11, the A12 are full with roundabouts if i remember well, The West Ring road in Birmingham (M42), London ring roads ,Extension of M5 from Exeter to Plymouth and sheffield- Manchester
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Old June 2nd, 2010, 12:43 PM   #626
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A lot of the motorways still planned in Ireland have been put on hold due to the financial crisis. The Limerick-Cork section may still get the go-ahead as I understand it, but some other sections will be delayed for some time.

These roads haven't come without a price; Ireland's economy took a real hammering in the last couple of years and the budget deficit is huge. Cuts are inevitable.
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Old June 2nd, 2010, 09:00 PM   #627
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Fortunately enough all the Dublin inter-urbans will be finished by the end of the year and were started before the economic crisis hit. Realistically there's not that much left to do, motorway-wise. Cork to Limerick and Limerick to Galway which are both on the agenda or already partly under construction are the main ones. Let's hope that they get through to completion.

Still while our motorways are excellent a lot of other national routes need serious work and are pretty poor quality. So the future will likely see lots of smaller re-alignment schemes, 2+2 town bypasses etc.

But for the size of the country and the disperal of the population the motorway network is excellent. It was the right decision to future-proof by building motorways on the key corridors even if the traffic volumes don't really warrant them in lots of places. Our network around 2005 was probably all that we really needed in terms of current traffic (apart from the M50 upgrade). But it's much better this way.

The PPP process to build these roads means they don't actually cost that much to the government up front (and take away the risk of overruns) so as long as the private sector can continue to get credit cutbacks shouldn't affect road building that much. However it is time to move much of the focus on to the big public transport projects.
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Old June 3rd, 2010, 02:26 AM   #628
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However it is time to move much of the focus on to the big public transport projects.
Outside of Dublin any major PT infrastructure will be hard to justify economically. Ireland has a very low population density - outside Dublin and to a lesser degree Cork, the remaining urban areas have small populations and are low density. The country as a whole has a very dispersed rural population.

Therefore it's uneconomic to provide many such services, even bus provision in low density cities is hard to run without subsidy or high fares which don't encourage use...unless you go the route of continental cities with large scale financial input and cheap fares, which inevitably involve a lot of government € much of which it will not be able to get back.

Sorry if this sounds very negative - its just that land use patterns have a great impact here. IF you want great PT which is relatively economic to run and maintain with fares at a level which entice people to use it rather than their own cars, then you need denser more centralised population centres. If you want more space, most people living in houses and gardens then you will have more dispersed population, particularly the case with regard to the endless one off houses built in the last decade or so.
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Old June 3rd, 2010, 03:21 AM   #629
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Well I was really thinking of the Metro and DART Underground because they have huge knock-on benefits for Leinster, if not the whole country. But totally agree about the land usage here, does make it very difficult to provide any decent transport.
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Old June 3rd, 2010, 04:22 PM   #630
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M3 to open Friday 4th June

Quote:
New era for traffic-choked towns






M3 motorway to open this week with prediction it will 'change Meath forever'

Image related to story 3997554, see caption or article text
The opening of the M3 will make a big difference to towns like Kells, Navan and Dunshaughlin which have been bedevilled by traffic jams for decades, it has been predicted.

Following a decade of controversy, the M3 motorway is to finally open to motorists this week when the Minister for Transport, Noel Dempsey, formally cuts the ribbon on Friday.

Chambers of Commerce and public representatives in towns along the route are looking forward to the opening of the largest project of its type in the history of the State, while Meath County Manager Tom Dowling says the new motorway will change Meath forever, opening up the heritage, amenity and ecomomic potential of the county to everybody.

Mr Dowling said that airports, ports and other motorways will be now be linked and become closer in time for the people of the county, with reduced journey times and more accessibility to all.

The Transport Minister said the M3 will enhance the county's prospects of securing more jobs and foreign direct investment, while it will also save lives as a modern, safe motorway.

The M3 is opening a month ahead of its scheduled July date, and is expected to take an hour off the full length of the journey from Dublin to the Meath-Cavan border at peak time.

The 63km motorway is the largest road infrastructure project in Ireland, stretching from the Clonee bypass to Derver, close to Virginia in Co Cavan. It covers 700 hectares of land, and involved the expenditure of €1 billion in its excavating, building and landscaping. The motorway was built by Eurolink, a partnership of Spanish company Cintra Concesiones de Infraestructuras de Transporte SA, a subsidiary of Ferrovial SA, and the Irish firm, SIAC Construction Ltd, in a public private partnership (PPP) arrangement with the Government.

Eurolink has a 45-year contract to operate the motorway, and will collect tolls at two toll plazas on the route, at Blackbull, Dunboyne, and at Grange, near Ardbraccan and White's Quarry, between Navan and Kells. The minimum toll will be €1.30 for a car for a single toll, rising to €3.30 for a truck.

The motorway was the subject of controvsery when a route between the hills of Tara and Skryne was chosen, leading to a campaign to have it rerouted, which saw protests and arrests over the past three years since construction began, as well as court challenges.

In the week of its opening, the M3 still has its critics, with Deputy Shane McEntee saying he plans boycotting the opening ceremony because of his opposition to the use of pyrite material in the building of the motorway. TaraWatch, the group which campaigned against the Tara-Skryne route, says there will be a shortfall in the amount of traffic which the NRA has predicted will use the motorway, and that the State will have to compensate the builders as a result.

The chairman of Meath County Council, Cllr William Carey, said the scheme is a critical piece of infrastructre, not just for Meath, where it will provide bypasses of Dunshaughlin, Navan and Kells, but also for access to the north-west of the country.

The Mayor of Navan, Cllr Joe Reilly, said the new motorway would improve the town's connectivity to the capital and he hoped the freer movement of traffic in Navan would encourage more people to shop in the town. He said it would mean safer travel and ease the congestion in towns like Kells, Navan and Dunshaughlin, but he feared the tolls would mean people wouldn't use the new road.

"People living in Kells and travelling to Dublin every day will have to pay over €7 in tolls per day," he pointed out.

He said that the village of Julianstown proved that tolls prevent people using motorways as 16,000 vehicles pass through the village each day in spite of the fact that the M1 was to take traffic away from the village.

The president of Navan Chamber of Commerce, William O'Reilly, said the Chamber was delighted that the M3 was finally about to open. "It will ease traffic congestion in Navan and make it more accessible. There is potential for a major boost for the town and Navan and Meath will have to work towards making the town and county an attractive place to work, live and do business in," he said.

Cllr John Farrelly expressed concern that there were two tolls along the motorway and he feared that it would mean heavy traffic still travelling through Kells.

He said there should have just been one toll plaza and it should have been located on the south side of the Trim/Ratoath interchange, as this would encourage people to use the train.

Businesses in Kells are expecting a huge tourism boost for the town as the opening of the M3 will see huge volumes of traffic removed from the streets. Chamber of Commerce president, Jess Olohan, said it would make the town more attractive, people would be able to see the town without congestion, would be able to enjoy the heritage trail and it would be a much easier town to shop in.

"We are expecting a big tourism boost and with initiatives like the Kells Enhancement Scheme and the urban art initiative it will make Kells a destination town," she added. It would also mean much easier access to airport, ports and Dublin city, making the town a more attractive place to set up new commercial and industrial premises, she said.

The cathaoirleach of Kells Town Council, Cllr Brian Curran, said the new motorway was an opportunity for the commercial interests and the entire community to reclaim the streets.

It was positive news for Kells, but he hoped that the tolls would not prevent traffic using it. "We will have to reassess the situation in a few months' time and, if trucks are continuing to travel through the town, we will have to propose some resolution," he said.

Town manager, Brendan McGrath, said the M3 would see Kells getting an opportunity to live and breathe, having been choked for decades from a constant stream of heavy traffic. "The N52 By-pass will ensure that, despite tolling, much of the heavy traffic will continue to avoid the town.

"This will only be good for Kells. The next challenge will be to attract the type of traffic and visitors into Kells that we want and the street enhancement scheme will be central to achieving this."

The motorway will provide links to the new M3 Parkway Station at Dunboyne and lead to the newly-aligned M50/M3 junction at Blanchardstown.

Referring to the pyrite issue, Deputy McEntee said: "I welcome the opening of the M3 and I have always supported the building of this major road. However, it is regrettable that, in the last two years, the people of south Meath, north County Dublin and Kildare have suffered serious problems due to pyrite-related filling. It is unforgivable that the NRA, the Minister for Environment and the Minister for Transport, having been notified of this inferior material and have allowed it to be used in the construction of the motorway. As a form of protest, I will not be attending the opening of the M3 because of my concern for the taxpayers of this country."

TaraWatch claims that traffic levels will not reach the amount necessary to fulfull the conditions of the PPP contract with Eurolink. They quote Fred Barry, NRA CEO, as saying that the level of traffic guarantee set out in the PPP contract for the initial year of operation is a combined total for the two plazas of 25,250 vehicles per day. If the traffic levels are 25,000 and the debt level thresholds are contravened, the concessionaire would receive an additional payment of approximately 100,000. If the traffic levels are 35,000, no additional payment arises.

TaraWatch is predicting that traffic levels will be 10,000-15,000, meaning a total cost of approximately €180-240 million over the 45 year life of the contract, based on a number of factors, including current traffic volumes on the existing N3, HGVs avoiding the M3 tolls by using the existing road, and Meath having been the hardest-hit county in terms of job losses due to the recession

http://www.meathchronicle.ie/news/round ... ked-towns/


D2M

Map of scheme




As for the junction at the M50 - a couple of pics as to how the junction is prgressing from Boards by Davy. Not much shown in the pics but it's getting there

[img]http://i50.************/2u91suw.jpg[/img]
[img]http://i48.************/sgsh9x.jpg[/img]
[img]http://i49.************/315bdef.jpg[/img]

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Old June 3rd, 2010, 04:34 PM   #631
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Amazing, one motorway opening after the other Cheers Ireland!
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Old June 3rd, 2010, 08:08 PM   #632
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Indeed. Obviously budgets have changed in recent years but is there any plans for an outer Dublin 'C' ring? Heard mention of it a few times.
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Old June 5th, 2010, 07:33 PM   #633
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There is, apparently, a major announcement due on the Outer Ring at any time in the next few weeks.

Found a couple of vids

Approaching toll plaza



Somewhere on the motorway

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Old June 6th, 2010, 12:50 PM   #634
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Hopes of building roads hit a dead end

IT’S the end of the new road for Ireland’s motorists. The National Roads Authority (NRA) says it does not know what funding it will get in future and can start only a small number of projects on the primary network this year and in 2011.

The agency will begin work on just six public-private partnership (PPP) schemes on key roads before the end of next year, and is hopeful only of enough multi-annual funding from the government to complete “some of the smaller bypasses” it had planned. The NRA is unable to predict the future of up to 28 projects at “planning stage”, and accepts that the majority of up to 20 “suspended” primary schemes will be shelved indefinitely.

Last week, Noel Dempsey, the transport minister, launched a €1 billion, 60km-long section of the M3 through Meath, and taoiseach Brian Cowen recently opened the final section of the M8 from Cork to Dublin. While the big links between the capital and the country’s main cities are being completed, the NRA is preparing an appeal for more funding to do more.

The authority, which has a budget of €1.11 billion this year, down from €1.44 billion in 2009, is finalising a report for the Department of Transport in which it will ask for continued funding of €100m a year for maintenance and operations. The document, due to go to Dempsey by the end of the summer, will also list road schemes which the NRA believes should be prioritised if its funding is cut heavily, as is likely.

The government is hoping to save €1 billion in capital outlay next year, while the Green party wants to prioritise spending on public transport, not roads.

The NRA had ambitions to modernise the national primary network, upgrading links between cities, widening and improving roads in other counties, and bypassing towns deemed bottlenecks.

Fred Barry, the NRA’s chief executive, recently told the Oireachtas transport committee that the multi-annual funding programme in place allowed “little else to be done for the indefinite future” once repairs and safety schemes were completed.

Among the PPP works planned are the development of a 16km motorway between Arklow and Rathnew on the N11, a junction upgrade at Newlands Cross on the N7 in Dublin, a bypass of Enniscorthy on the M11, motorway works on the M20 southern section of the Cork-Limerick route, and on the M18 from Gort to Tuam.

Other projects the NRA “hoped to build”, Barry said, were a small number of bypasses including Longford on the N5 and junction upgrades on the southern ring road in Cork. “We will pursue the tendering process for these projects this year but will have to await next year’s budget before awarding contracts,” he said.

The NRA said: “We must take into account the country’s current fiscal circumstances and think long term. For the moment, the priority is to continue maintenance programmes to ensure the investment already made is protected. When circumstances improve, the authority needs to be ready to move on key projects that run a low risk of complications.”

Planned schemes which could not fall off the priority list include a number of works on the N17 between Galway and Sligo, and bypasses of towns such as Adare on the N21 and Dungarvan on the N25. Some projects on the N5, recently criticised by American multinationals based in Mayo, may not go ahead.

Some of the suspended projects which the NRA accepts are going to be delayed for a long period include a bypass of Sligo on the N4 and the upgrading of the Naas-to-Newbridge M7 motorway to three lanes.

Fergus O’Dowd, Fine Gael’s transport spokesman, said his party, in government, would continue to invest in road infrastructure and would not cut the capital spending budget. “We were behind the curve for some time; the country is catching up now, but it is important to continue to invest in the road network,” he said.

“We need to make sure that when the economy picks up, we are in a position to take advantage.”

A spokesman for Dempsey said the government had invested in road infrastructure, as shown by the completion of the inter-urban routes. He said the minister would examine any report supplied by the NRA.
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/com...cle7144925.ece
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Old June 6th, 2010, 03:48 PM   #635
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How did they build it around the Hill of Tara, did they do it as planned or did they divert the route?
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Old June 6th, 2010, 04:26 PM   #636
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They did it as planned. They built the road around it. It's further away then the existing road was. I don't really get what they were all complaining about. You could dig up any field in Ireland and chances are you will come across something of archeological significance.
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Old June 13th, 2010, 09:40 PM   #637
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Quote:
Originally Posted by transport21 View Post
Hopes of building roads hit a dead end

IT’S the end of the new road for Ireland’s motorists. The National Roads Authority (NRA) says it does not know what funding it will get in future and can start only a small number of projects on the primary network this year and in 2011.

The agency will begin work on just six public-private partnership (PPP) schemes on key roads before the end of next year, and is hopeful only of enough multi-annual funding from the government to complete “some of the smaller bypasses” it had planned. The NRA is unable to predict the future of up to 28 projects at “planning stage”, and accepts that the majority of up to 20 “suspended” primary schemes will be shelved indefinitely.
The article is written in a strange way! It starts saying it's the end of the line for roadbuilding, but then says that the 6 PPPs will start by end 2011 (ie. within 18 months.) Each of these PPPs is a huge scheme, usually a motorway. This is a lot of roadbuilding for an area supposedly dead in the water. Following this, the smaller bypasses seem to be proceeding, which is what we all want. As for the 20 suspended schemes, this has been known for a long time at this stage.

Quote:
Originally Posted by odlum833 View Post
They did it as planned. They built the road around it. It's further away then the existing road was. I don't really get what they were all complaining about. You could dig up any field in Ireland and chances are you will come across something of archeological significance.
I agree, it was hijacked by hippies, druids, and earth mothers. In case you guys are interested, I blogged about it here.
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Old June 19th, 2010, 03:04 AM   #638
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Thanks for the link to your blog.



Quote:
The Irish Times - Saturday, June 19, 2010



Walkers invited to take a trip under the river Shannon via €810m tunnel




A section of the €810 million tunnel which passes under the river Shannon and connects Limerick and Clare. It is expected to open officially later this summer, and a toll of about €1.80 will be charged for private cars.



TIM O'BRIEN

A CHANCE to be one of the first people to walk under the river Shannon is being offered to people in Limerick and Clare today.

The 900m twin-tube tunnel and associated 9km dual carriageway is, at €810 million, the State’s most expensive motorway tunnel, outstripping the cost of the Dublin Port Tunnel by some €60 million.

From 10am to 7pm, visitors are being invited to walk through the tunnel in advance of its official opening date later this summer. The precast tunnel was previously on display before it was lowered into position in July 2008.

Officially known as the Limerick Southern Ring Road Phase 2, the new road traverses the longest river in these islands and links the N7 Dublin Road, the N20 Cork Road and the N18 Ennis Road.

The public open day is the last chance for visitors to walk the tunnel, according to the National Roads Authority, which said pedestrians will not be accommodated when the tunnel opens.

Visitors to the tunnel will be invited to walk across the scenic Bunlicky Lake causeway before entering the northbound tunnel bore.

The outward walk is about 1.5km, and when walkers emerge from the northbound tunnel, tea will be available in the site canteen. The return trip is also about 1.5km, so visitors are advised to bring walking shoes.

A commemorative book will be on sale, and proceeds will be donated to the Cystic Fibrosis Association of Ireland (Limerick branch), Milford Care Centre and Thomond House Hostels for the Homeless.

When the tunnel opens officially later this summer, a toll of about €1.80 is to be charged for private cars.

The tunnel operator is Direct Route Limerick Ltd, which holds the concession for 35 years.

A spokesman for the roads authority said comparing the costs of the Limerick and Dublin tunnels was like comparing “chalk and cheese”.

He said the principal reason for the Limerick tunnel being more expensive was that the price included annual maintenance and operation over the 35-year life of the contract, as well as refurbishment to a very high condition before the tunnel is handed over to the State at the end of the contract.

The cost of operating, maintaining and refurbishing the Dublin tunnel was not included in the €775 million cost, which figure also did not include land costs.

The cost of land for the Limerick tunnel was very high, the spokesman added.
Irish Times

...
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Old June 20th, 2010, 01:07 PM   #639
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Pics of the tunnel

A poster over on boards.ie has uploaded some pics of the tunnel (taken during the walk) here.

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Old July 11th, 2010, 08:01 PM   #640
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M3 pictures

Folks,

Here are some photos along the M3/N3, showing the M3 Clonee to north Kells scheme which opened last month.

Enjoy!

1. We're going from A on the M50 to B northwest of Kells on this map.


2. Near Blanchardstown in Dublin, Exit 6 on the M50 is the junction for the N3/M3. This is currently being remodelled to allow freeflow M50 - N3 outbound movements. This part of the M50 has barrier-free tolling, so if you're not registered with a tag or video (licence plate) account, then you must ring up or visit a participating outlet and pay your toll by 8 pm the following day.


3. Coming off the M50 northbound at exit 6, you can see the new freeflow link to the N3 outbound (northbound) under construction to the right. This junction started off as a grade-separated roundabout, and the upgrade work is due to finish around October 2010.


4. On the N3 northbound, just after the M50 exit. There's still one set of traffic lights here to negotiate before the expressway section. Once the upgrade is complete, you won't need to go through these lights.


5. On the N3 north of Blanchardstown, approaching Clonee. This section of the N3 has some direct accesses to private properties, so can't be motorway even though the main junctions are grade-separated.


6. Exit for Clonee on the N3, approaching the motorway section.


7. Start of the motorway. The first kilometre or so was redesignated motorway last year, as it inescapably leads onto the new M3 scheme.


8. Shortly after the new motorway starts, we're approaching exit 5 for Dunboyne. The left panel of the gantry really should have a downward-pointing arrow, as this lane exits.


9. Exit 5. On the left of the exit is the new M3 Parkway railway station, on the soon-to-be reopened Clonsilla - Dunboyne line. This was part of the Clonsilla - Navan line, which closed in 1963. It is now being reopened, but train users will have to pay the motorway toll if approaching from the north on the M3.


10. Just north of exit 5, we're apporaching the first toll plaza.


11. The southern toll plaza of the M3. €1.30 for cars; I'm in the express lane reserved for holders of electronic tags.


12. Northbound, approaching exit 6.


13. Gantry for exit 6. This is part of the tolled section.


14. On the main line, heading north.


15. The rolling countryside of County Meath.


16. Approaching exit 7.


17. Approaching exit 8, Navan south. This section is not tolled.


18. Exit 8 is a trumpet-style interchange. Navan is the biggest town on the N3/M3 route, and many commute from here to Dublin.


19. North of exit 8, we're west of Navan town.


20. Approaching exit 9 is a long straight.


21. North of exit 9 is another tolled section.


22. No safety fence for the SOS phone!


23. Toll charge information, approaching the northern toll plaza. The only toll stations are on the motorway mainline -- unlike other schemes, there are no toll stations on the slip roads joining or leaving the M3. This means only certain sections are tolled.


24. The northern toll plaza is smaller than its southern counterpart, as traffic levels here are lower than south of Navan.


25. Approaching exit 10, south of Kells. Farmers along Ireland's motorways are starting to allow people to park advertising trailers in their fields -- quite unsightly in my opinion!


26. Exit 10 for Kells South is a trumpet interchange.


27. Shortly after exit 10, the end of the motorway section approaches. The M3 terminates at one-half of a dumbell interchange, which would allow future grade separation of traffic levels warrented it. At present, it's a flat at-grade intersection, so traffic on the N3/M3 must yield.


28. The western roundabout at the end of the M3, just west of Kells. See here for the layout.


29. After the roundabout, the N3 continues as what the NRA call a Type 2 or 2+2 dual carriageway. The carriageways are separated by a wire barrier fence, and no hard shoulders are provided. The speed limit drops from 120 to 100 km/h.


30. West of Kells, on the new 2+2 section of the N3.


31. Intermediate junction on the N3. Left here to visit the stone age ruins at Loughcrew, one of the many ancient monuments that dot this area of Ireland.


32. Northwest of Kells on the new N3.


33. Approaching the nothern terminus of the scheme.


34. The dual carriageway ends at this roundabout, north of Kells.


35. Tie-in with the old N3, 10km south of Virginia, County Cavan. This new 60km scheme will save as much as 30 - 45 minutes of journey time at peak periods.
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