Interesting piece into today IndoRag about how the chairman of Irish Rail wants to electrify the Maynooth Line ASAP and put the Northern Line on the long finger. Wants a fleet of diesel-electric hybrid DMUs to operate within and beyond the DART network, as well as electrify the Dublin-Belfast and Dublin-Cork lines.
Naturally none of this will come to pass, but I did find it interesting reading between the lines that there was zero mention of the Dart Underground. So we can probably take it as a given that project is now history. Unless it was mentioned and the IndoRag did not print it?
I wouldnt hold my breath of any of this coming to fruition.
Well some of it is definitely happening:
- The tender for the refurbishment of the 2700's is on
- The tender for 41 new ICR carriages is being prepared
- The tender for refurbishment of engines in ongoing.
Of course these are all the relatively easy and obvious improvements. The electrifications are much more pie in the sky stuff. In particular Cork to Belfast.
The funny thing is the article is trying to make out they are going all environmentally friendly and electric. While in reality of the things actually happening they are actually just extending the existing Diesel fleet for another 20 to 30 years and kicking electrification down the track!
i can't see any electrification of anything happening any time soon.
41 new ICR cars while welcome won't change the fact they are unsuited to suburban services (i presume that is mostly the reason they are being ordered)
2700 units are for Suburban services.
We still have commuter units appearing on Rosslare, Sligo and Tralee services, so more ICR stock is needed
oh believe me, i'm well aware of that. i'm probably one of the most vocal on here in relation to that problem.
it is, however my understanding is it's not complete units but intermediat cars that are being ordered. while nice they won't help the situation of suburban units on long distance services.
Maynooth over Balbriggan for electrification is sensible in that Maynooth would benefit the most from the acceleration properties of electric trains due to more, closer stations and an extremely poor alignment. Northern Line would benefit most from more passing loops / partial quad tracking on the inner sections with electrification bringing limited further benefits.
-Extend the docklands rail line across the Samuel Beckett bridge and up the quays to Tara street.
-Convert the Maynooth commuter line to light rail (Irish broadgauge with branches to the Blanch Centre) allowing onstreet connection to Tara Street over the Samuel Beckett bridge.
- Capcity across the loop line bridge reduced allowing all commuter trains from Huestion to go through Phoenix Park tunnel to the city centre
- thereby no need for Dart Underground that will cost €billions and will never get green lit
- samuel beckett bridge already built for light rail
Including the fact that your Broad Guage Maynooth Luas would have to change gauge to use the already existing Samuel Beckett Bridge tracks, let me be the first to congratulate you on finding the missing link between a Rollercoaster and Rail Transport.
The 2700s will in all likelihood go back to Limerick for regional services.
The 2800s will then return to Dublin.
As I understand it the ICR order will be for intermediate cars thereby allowing sets to be reformed which will then release some sets displaced for use elsewhere.
It wouldn't change gauge. All irish gauge. There is no track built on the bridge as yet. The connections would be which all avoid Connolly Station:
Maynooth - Tara St
Maynooth - blanch - Tara
Btw there is space reserved for a rail connection from the maynooth line to the blanch centre. It will never get used unless it is light rail. Light rail brings transport to the masses and is the way to go.
Surely then the phoenix park tunnel is not needed? The red line luas is already there!
And what light rail currently services Blanchardstown? Probably the largest urban population in Dublin!!
the maynooth line and the space reserved for tracks across the - samuel beckett bridge are of 2 different gauges (okay, not a huge problem as gauge changing trains do exist i believe)
but then, the question is what are you trying to achieve? facilitate trains through the phoenix park tunnel? well, they are lesser used then the maynooth line, so converting the maynooth line to facilitate them is in my view nonsense. reduce capacity meaning no need for dart underground? well, that's not an option. build a rail line into blanch? i would be in support of that but not at the cost of converting a busy heavy rail line to a light rail line. going into blanch could be part of another luas line if building a heavy rail link can't be done or isn't justified.
dart underground is needed and it's implementation cannot be avoided. reduction of heavy rail capacity within the dublin area is not an option. the maynooth line caries a large amount of passengers, and you have other rail services using the maynooth line, to longford and sligo. to convert the line would also mean closure of some period, which i have no doubt would cause huge problems.
i don't know about anyone else, but for me the perceived benefits of this are so small for the issues it would cause (and potentially the costs) and even at the end of it dart underground will still be needed.
not for the vast majority of your proposal. a light rail service for blanch is a good idea but as part of another luas line serving areas not served.