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Old January 7th, 2009, 05:40 PM   #161
odlum833
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Nice website! Like the maps. It's about time we had more websites like this. Fair play.

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Old January 7th, 2009, 06:22 PM   #162
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Originally Posted by odlum833 View Post
Furet do you not think your taking minor landscaping issues a little seriously? The objective is not to have landscaping - it is to have good roads. In tougher economic times im afraid the latter is priorty.
Not at all.

Lanscaping:

- Makes the roads more environmentally friendly;
- Improves a road's aesthetic (which is vital considering they will be a fixed part of the landscape for at least the next 150 years) by blending it into the surrounding countryside;
- Prevents embankment erosion;
- Creates a noise barrier for the thousands of homes and dozens of towns and villages these motorways pass close to (i.e. they're not in the middle of nowhere);
- And lastly, properly planted banks reduce the spread of noxious, poisonous weeds such as dock, ragwort and thistle into adjacent fields and gardens. This is important as many of these weeds are actually illegal and should be exterminated BY LAW because of their detrimental affects on human and animal health.

I have seen my home area transformed from a green and peaceful Golden Vale oasis to a noisy, weedy, brown savanah-type landscape. This has negative effects for my home, my community and my county. It's not all about Dublin. The roadsides, as indictated in the photo I link to, include vast amounts of wasted, utterly unproductive land that has been condemned to lie fallow til God knows when. Landscaping should not be considered some optional extra - it must be an intrinsic element of any well designed road, just as accomadation works are. A road is not simply a river of concrete and asphalt. It becomes much more: a fixed, enduring and defining landmark. How a country treats its road sides says a lot about how it values its heritage and countryside as a resource. Many Irish people don't give a fig about theirs, as can be seen from a) the thousands and thousands of inappropriate, unsustainable and unsightly one-off houses that are destroying the countryside one acre at a time; b) and from the voracious removal of hedgerows and ponds; and c) from the ghastly, sprawling mass that Dublin in particular has turned into.

The irony is, I'm pro-motorway and pro-growth; I just wish it was done properly.

It really is sad.
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Old January 7th, 2009, 07:04 PM   #163
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Im not against landscaping - I agree it would be nice to see more of it. Im just making the point that most motorways are well landscaped. I have never travelled the M8 so im not sure what you are getting at. I have seen your vids though and I don't see a particular issue here with the new section opened recently. Perhaps landscaping will take place in the future.
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Old January 7th, 2009, 09:42 PM   #164
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M9 Carlow Bypass. Opened May 2008. Lovely day when I took these pics.
You can also see the remarkable lack of traffic on motorways in Ireland that are far from a major city, though these were taken very shortly after the road opened.













In response to the landscaping argument going on here, I can see in the above pics that the sides are often patchy or barren - but surely this is just because the grass/shrubs haven't had a chance to grow out yet? The road was only opened a short time when the pics were taken.
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Old January 7th, 2009, 10:55 PM   #165
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Quote:
Originally Posted by odlum833 View Post
Im not against landscaping - I agree it would be nice to see more of it. Im just making the point that most motorways are well landscaped. I have never travelled the M8 so im not sure what you are getting at. I have seen your vids though and I don't see a particular issue here with the new section opened recently. Perhaps landscaping will take place in the future.
I think you're right there; we'll probably see gradual additions to the plant stock later on.

If you follow this link - http://www.boards.ie/vbulletin/showt...5368766&page=2 - and look at the JPG attachments to post #25 and 26, you'll see what I mean. The videos I posted aren't very high definition, and the roadsides -- which often extend many metres out from the mainline's edge -- aren't visible. Also, it's winter, so landscaping issues aren't as obvious as they are in the summer months, especially from mid-June onwards when the grass is fully grown and has turned brown.
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Old January 7th, 2009, 11:01 PM   #166
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spacetweek View Post
M9 Carlow Bypass. Opened May 2008. Lovely day when I took these pics.
You can also see the remarkable lack of traffic on motorways in Ireland that are far from a major city, though these were taken very shortly after the road opened.


In response to the landscaping argument going on here, I can see in the above pics that the sides are often patchy or barren - but surely this is just because the grass/shrubs haven't had a chance to grow out yet? The road was only opened a short time when the pics were taken.
If those pictures were taken in late May, that explains why the grass still looks lush and green, and consequently nice. The problem occurs from high summer until November, when grass has reached well over 2ft in height and turns stringy and brown. Weeds will have grown up, turned to seed, and then continue to stand dead also, until yet more will appear the following year ad nauseam. Looking at the pictures, I see no evidence that shrubs have been planted at all, which is a pity because it looks like a nice route. Imagine it marred by rusty coloured dying foliage for 5 months of the year, like 39km of the M8 (through the "Golden" Vale) is.
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Old January 7th, 2009, 11:04 PM   #167
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Quote:
Originally Posted by odlum833 View Post
Great pics Thanks! Dont forget to post your pics here btw http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showth...=726678&page=3

Yeah looks pretty hilly and im guessing relatively high too by the terrain. Looks very advanced too. Opening this year? This is the section south of Carlow?

Furet I really don't see landscaping as much of an issue. All the motorways around Dublin are fine. Just have to agree to disagree!
Yea it's south of Carlow. Im sure of that. It's between Waterford and Kilkenny. ( Knocktopher )
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Old January 8th, 2009, 01:21 AM   #168
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Thanks for great pictures from open part of M9 but also from part still under construction. It's going to be nice rural motorway.

When all the current projects open in 2010 I'll go to Ireland for driving holiday

By the way, do you know guys where I can find data about traffic flow on major irish coridors? I mean M1, N3, N6, N7, N8, N9. I guess the busiest road in Ireland is M50. How many vehicles use it per day? 50k? 75k?
M9 look very quiet. I'll be surprise if there is more than 10k/24h.

Also, how many vehicles are registered in Ireland?

EDIT:
How toll is median barrier? It looks quite toll. Does it protect from headlights of cars on the other lanes?

Last edited by geogregor; January 8th, 2009 at 01:27 AM.
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Old January 8th, 2009, 02:55 AM   #169
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spacetweek View Post
M9 Carlow Bypass. Opened May 2008. Lovely day when I took these pics.
You can also see the remarkable lack of traffic on motorways in Ireland that are far from a major city, though these were taken very shortly after the road opened.













In response to the landscaping argument going on here, I can see in the above pics that the sides are often patchy or barren - but surely this is just because the grass/shrubs haven't had a chance to grow out yet? The road was only opened a short time when the pics were taken.

Stunning! Thanks Can't wait to try the Carlow Bypass myself. Remember the Ireland section is linked in my sig. Please post there too.
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Old January 8th, 2009, 02:58 AM   #170
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Originally Posted by geogregor View Post
How toll is median barrier? It looks quite toll. Does it protect from headlights of cars on the other lanes?

I dont have the ADT's to hand atm to tell you about the traffic volumes unfortunately. You know im not sure how tall the median barriers are but they do block headlights quite well unless your on an incline of course.
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Old January 8th, 2009, 11:27 AM   #171
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Originally Posted by geogregor View Post
By the way, do you know guys where I can find data about traffic flow on major irish coridors? I mean M1, N3, N6, N7, N8, N9. I guess the busiest road in Ireland is M50. How many vehicles use it per day? 50k? 75k?
M9 look very quiet. I'll be surprise if there is more than 10k/24h.
The M50 is by far the busiest at 80,000+ vehicles per day at least, probably a lot more, maybe even 100,000. It is over capacity.

The M7 on the approach to Naas/Dublin is next, carrying over 60 to 70,000 as far as I know. But away from Dublin, midway between the capital and Limerick, it probably doesn't go far over 16,000 vehicles per day, and can fall to as low as 10,000.

The N25 around Cork City is probably next with perhaps 40-50,000 vehicles per day, but this is only around the city.

The N8/M8 carries 16,000-18,000 vehicles per day, rising to approximately 19,000-20,000+ closer to Cork.

The M6 probably carries 16,000 or less on average.

The M9 has been called a "white elephant" (a glorious waste of money) by even some road enthusiasts, with traffic falling to only 8,000 vehicles per day through some parts, although it does/will carry over 17,000 through certain short sections.

I am recalling these figures from memory. If you type "daily traffic volumes NRA" into google.ie you should get a decent chart that shows volumes - but the figures are probably a little out of date.

The bottom line is that a lot of people who take an interest in transport feel that the motorway programme should have been rationalised a lot more. They say that routes such as the M6/M7 and M8/M9, should have been amalgamated to funnel long haul traffic more economically (for a map of what a more rationalised motorway network should look like, see here: http://www.boards.ie/vbulletin/showp...6&postcount=12 ). They also say that Ireland has wasted billions of euro on empty motorways. Those in favour of the current motorway schemes say that safety is more important than simple efficiency, and they say that the critics should think more long-term: sure, the motorways are under capacity now; but by 2030 we will be happy we built them.

I think that is a fair summary of the debate.

Last edited by Furet; January 8th, 2009 at 04:03 PM.
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Old January 8th, 2009, 11:41 AM   #172
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80,000 is busy enough to strongly consider 2x3 lanes. At 60,000 it isn't really necessary yet. It usually creates no or only minor congestion, or only during incidents, but you can't widen roads only because of possible incidents.
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Old January 8th, 2009, 02:19 PM   #173
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Much of the M50 will be 2x4 lanes, with 2x3 between junctions in a couple of years.

The problem with the Rationalised Network, is that the route to Port Laois was already well on its way before the plans for the Interurbans to all be HQDC or better came about. You also miss serving most of the big places in-between Dublin and the Cities: Athlone, Port Laois, Mullingar, etc. Thirdly there's the eggs in one basket problem we have over the water in Great Britain. The strategic importance of some bits of road are very important: you have one bit of motorway that's Dublin to everywhere away from the East Coast. Imagine if that closes? It's bad enough that the M8 and M9 have to rely on the M7/N7 and the S/SW relies on the Naas Road (Outer Orbital, even if just to the M4 would help a lot if there were any problems). I find the plans implemented are far better than the idea of the Rationalised Network, not least for serving the inland towns, but also for serving Dublin commutes better and having that redundancy.
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Old January 8th, 2009, 04:15 PM   #174
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Quote:
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80,000 is busy enough to strongly consider 2x3 lanes. At 60,000 it isn't really necessary yet. It usually creates no or only minor congestion, or only during incidents, but you can't widen roads only because of possible incidents.
The M50 is currently the scene of a huge upgrade project (running 2006-2010) which will see most of it expanded to 2x4 lanes. As a result of the road works, traffic on it has actually been dropping for a few years now: notice in this data sheet how in February, figures are:
2008 92000
2007 94000
2006 95000

So, I think when the road is completed in 2010, traffic will jump back up, probably to above 100,000 (some sections were already above 100000 even back in 2006).

The M9 is indeed a quiet road - as you can see, this section only gets around 7000 vehicles a day during the summer.

Currently, the busiest road in Ireland is the section of M1 between the Airport Exit and the M50 Junction. It has 110,000 vehicles.
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Old January 8th, 2009, 04:31 PM   #175
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For reference; the Dutch A20 carries 180,000 on 2x3 and the A27 200,000 on 2x4. There's still room for an increase of traffic on that M50 With 2x4, traffic jams shouldn't be a problem for a long time, unless they start mass-building suburbs everywhere. But I don't think Irelands population growth is that big, right?
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Old January 8th, 2009, 05:37 PM   #176
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This post deleted in protest against politically biased moderation.

Keep politics out of the roads forum.

Last edited by ardmacha; March 27th, 2010 at 04:39 AM.
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Old January 8th, 2009, 09:06 PM   #177
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How come that Ireland's population decreased so dramatically? Disease or just because parts of the Irish empire were annexed by other countries?
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Old January 8th, 2009, 09:16 PM   #178
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How come that Ireland's population decreased so dramatically? Disease or just because parts of the Irish empire were annexed by other countries?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Famine_(Ireland)

I've already known about that in the first grade of my junior high, man!
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Old January 8th, 2009, 09:25 PM   #179
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Never learned that, really! Quite weird, it seems like it has enough historic value to teach it to Dutch school kids, but I have never heard of it, until now.
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Old January 8th, 2009, 09:36 PM   #180
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The graph is actually wrong; the figure for 1841 should be 8 million, not 7.
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