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Western Rail Corridor

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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 75 ✭✭Crossley


    Zaph0d wrote:
    Why doesn't P11 put more effort into communicating their proposals for transport development in the west of Ireland rather than attacking the western based initiatives they find stupid?

    Agreed. It's a very strange rail lobby that spends more time advocating rail closures and service withdrawals and rubbishing non-GDA expansion plans than it does promoting existing or new services.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 823 ✭✭✭MG


    P11’s main problem has always been its communications and we have another example of it here in the wording of this question. It is neither the most important issue in rail nor a joke, but it is a hugely important issue for having an integrated rail network. P11 are always at their best when they keep their opinions to themselves and present the facts. The strange things is that after the amateurish PR and constant U turning when withdrawing their support for the WRC, they did finally present a very good plan for the WRC (praise where praise is due). Why they don’t actually support this plan is beyond me.

    It seems to me that any lobby group worth their salt would have put their campaign in this context: Support the Interconnector as the value for money solution to Dublins problems and with the savings we can pay for the WRC as well. Then put the pressure on IE to have sensible timetables and an excellent service. That keeps everyone happy. Unfortunately, they have alienated the West (& south) with their campaign which gives the impression that the WRC and solving Dublins problems are mutually exclusive goals, an either/or scenario. Now, no one supporting the WRC would touch P11 with a bargepole.

    P11, please stop campaigning for less and start campaigning for more.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 173 ✭✭P11 Comms


    "P11, please stop campaigning for less and start campaigning for more."

    We are. More bums in trains seats and not more empty and failed railway lines in the middle of nowhere. P11 understand there is a very distinct difference between running a train and running a train service.

    Busy trains are the only sucessful trains.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 173 ✭✭P11 Comms


    ____________________________________________

    New West link railway would cost €250 million
    Sligo Weekender - Tuesday 9 November 2004

    "While €250 million is a lot of money, the West on Track campaign point out that it is relatively speaking cheap compared to other big infrastructure projects."

    "Also the West on Track campaign believe that the rail line can not only be self-financing but can actually make an operating profit."

    "That is why the West on Track campaign don’t feel that the cost should be a factor in the government’s thinking."

    _______________________________________________

    I am sure the taxpayers of this country are overjoyed reading this.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,327 ✭✭✭dowlingm


    One thing not mentioned in the WRC slanging match is that freight may actually be a bigger user than passengers. Unfortunately mixed pax and freight seems to be a no-no but to get freight from Sligo to Tralee might be a damn sight easier by rail.

    As for the level crossings, since the line is mostly closed grade separation work or level crossing work could be done with minimal disruption since there is no existing timetable to disrupt... a massive integrated upgrade involving purchasing the level crossing gates and signals at the same time as signalling the WRC track to modern standards could cut down the costs compared with remediating a single level crossing on a working line.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,042 ✭✭✭Metrobest


    from ireland.com, Mon, Apr 7, 03:

    Rail lobby group questions plan for 'interconnector' tunnel
    Chris Ashmore



    The wisdom of spending €1 billion to build an "interconnector" rail tunnel linking Heuston Station with Pearse Station and Connolly Station/Spencer Dock has been seriously questioned by the recently formed railway lobby group, Platform 11.

    A more practical and immediate solution to integrating rail transport in Dublin in the short term would be to use an existing rail route through the Phoenix Park tunnel which currently has no passenger services, according to the group.

    Platform 11 says Dublin already has a perfectly good and operational double-track rail line that runs from Heuston to Connolly stations just waiting to be used.

    "It is perhaps the best-kept secret in the history of urban rail transport anywhere in Europe."

    It claims that such a service could be operational within a year. In effect, it would mean that passengers on the south-western suburban routes could travel to Connolly - and ultimately Spencer Dock - rather than Heuston.

    Platform 11 has drawn up its own proposals for a "cross-city shuttle" between Heuston Station and a planned new station at Spencer Dock.

    It claims that the existing line from Heuston Station to Connolly Station via Cabra, Glasnevin and Drumcondra is grossly under-used and could be developed at a fraction of the cost.

    At present the line is used by freight trains and for moving stock to depots for maintenance purposes.

    "It is a situation that would be unheard of in any other European city, let alone a gridlocked capital notorious for its lack of public rail transport," according to the group.

    "Our transport planners seem obsessed with grandiose and massively expensive tunnelling concepts that will take years to complete, while part of the solution to Dublin's congestion problem is staring us in the face."

    According to Platform 11 steering group member, Mr Derek Wheeler, it is not opposed to the "interconnector" idea in principle and would be supportive of any investment to enhance public transport.

    However, past experience pointed to cost overruns and longer timescales than planned.

    "CIÉ had plans for a rapid rail system as far back as 1973, little of which has been implemented apart from the DART," he notes.

    In the Strategic Rail Review, published last week, consultants Booz Allen Hamilton contend that the Phoenix Park tunnel route "offers no real opportunities for passenger services".

    "Passengers who currently alight at Heuston are unlikely to be attracted by an extra 15- minute trip to Spencer Dock Station, particularly when the Luas system service is operating from Heuston Station to Connolly Station," it says.

    But Mr Wheeler points out that the use of the Phoenix Park route would mean more options and more capacity - and with the Luas, the cost of having an interconnector tunnel as well would have to be questioned.

    He feels that the "interconnector" option is being "done at the expense of the regions". Rather than spending €1 billion on this project, the same money could progress a number of new schemes highlighted in the SRR.

    Mr Wheeler instanced such schemes as Galway-Limerick-Cork (€290 million), an enhanced Cork suburban service (€124 million), Limerick-Shannon-Ennis (€117 million), Athlone-Mullingar (€154 million), Derry-Letterkenny (€151 million), and Navan-Drogheda (€110 million).


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 173 ✭✭P11 Comms


    Ah memories. A genius ploy at the time to get CIE to admit that the Phoenix Park tunnel could be used for passengers services. We were simply brilliant and embrassed CIE into admiting that it was not "a works tunnel" afterall. You should read the transcript from the Dail. This is why IE will be running passenger trains through the tunnel in the next few years. We undone decades of CIE spin using an arsenal of facts and evidence.


  • Registered Users Posts: 629 ✭✭✭enterprise


    MG wrote:
    "Unfortunately, they have alienated the West (& south) with their campaign". "Now, no one supporting the WRC would touch P11 with a bargepole."

    Anybody with sense wouldn't touch Platform 11 with a bargepole. To call themselves a "national rail lobby group" is a joke and actually false advertising!


  • Registered Users Posts: 629 ✭✭✭enterprise


    Metrobest wrote:
    from ireland.com, Mon, Apr 7, 03:

    Rail lobby group questions plan for 'interconnector' tunnel
    Chris Ashmore



    The wisdom of spending €1 billion to build an "interconnector" rail tunnel linking Heuston Station with Pearse Station and Connolly Station/Spencer Dock has been seriously questioned by the recently formed railway lobby group, Platform 11.

    A more practical and immediate solution to integrating rail transport in Dublin in the short term would be to use an existing rail route through the Phoenix Park tunnel which currently has no passenger services, according to the group.

    Platform 11 says Dublin already has a perfectly good and operational double-track rail line that runs from Heuston to Connolly stations just waiting to be used.

    "It is perhaps the best-kept secret in the history of urban rail transport anywhere in Europe."

    It claims that such a service could be operational within a year. In effect, it would mean that passengers on the south-western suburban routes could travel to Connolly - and ultimately Spencer Dock - rather than Heuston.

    Platform 11 has drawn up its own proposals for a "cross-city shuttle" between Heuston Station and a planned new station at Spencer Dock.

    It claims that the existing line from Heuston Station to Connolly Station via Cabra, Glasnevin and Drumcondra is grossly under-used and could be developed at a fraction of the cost.

    At present the line is used by freight trains and for moving stock to depots for maintenance purposes.

    "It is a situation that would be unheard of in any other European city, let alone a gridlocked capital notorious for its lack of public rail transport," according to the group.

    "Our transport planners seem obsessed with grandiose and massively expensive tunnelling concepts that will take years to complete, while part of the solution to Dublin's congestion problem is staring us in the face."

    According to Platform 11 steering group member, Mr Derek Wheeler, it is not opposed to the "interconnector" idea in principle and would be supportive of any investment to enhance public transport.

    However, past experience pointed to cost overruns and longer timescales than planned.

    "CIÉ had plans for a rapid rail system as far back as 1973, little of which has been implemented apart from the DART," he notes.

    In the Strategic Rail Review, published last week, consultants Booz Allen Hamilton contend that the Phoenix Park tunnel route "offers no real opportunities for passenger services".

    "Passengers who currently alight at Heuston are unlikely to be attracted by an extra 15- minute trip to Spencer Dock Station, particularly when the Luas system service is operating from Heuston Station to Connolly Station," it says.

    But Mr Wheeler points out that the use of the Phoenix Park route would mean more options and more capacity - and with the Luas, the cost of having an interconnector tunnel as well would have to be questioned.

    He feels that the "interconnector" option is being "done at the expense of the regions". Rather than spending €1 billion on this project, the same money could progress a number of new schemes highlighted in the SRR.

    Mr Wheeler instanced such schemes as Galway-Limerick-Cork (€290 million), an enhanced Cork suburban service (€124 million), Limerick-Shannon-Ennis (€117 million), Athlone-Mullingar (€154 million), Derry-Letterkenny (€151 million), and Navan-Drogheda (€110 million).

    Another example showing how two faced Platform 11 are.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,042 ✭✭✭Metrobest


    enterprise wrote:
    Another example showing how two faced Platform 11 are.

    If this was America, there would be comments describing P11 as ''flip floppers!'' and: ''they can run but they can't hide.''


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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,011 ✭✭✭sliabh


    Is anyone planning to discuss the WRC?


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 823 ✭✭✭MG


    sliabh wrote:
    Is anyone planning to discuss the WRC?

    I'd support reopening the WRC from Tuam to Ennis, running both commuter & Inter city services (real services with proper timetables). In effect, I support P11's latest plan (the one after supporting the full WRC, after withdrawing support for the WRC and after reopening Tuam-Athenry only) except I'd add more commuter shuttles.

    The problem is with the WRC is whether to support the people with a good plan but considerably less than zero interest or those with a poor plan but the ability to achieve things for the Corridor (Tuam to Cork).


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,011 ✭✭✭sliabh


    Personally I would support a partial re-opening provided it was part of a greater regionalisation strategy. Something like the (badly named) "Technopolis" that Doc Ed Walsh is plugging. IT Article, free sub at the moment:

    http://www.ireland.com/newspaper/ireland/2004/1111/2568432999HM2PAGELEAD.html

    This idea would push for a western development corridor running Cork-Limerick-Galway.

    But that would mean ditching the current daft decentralisation and regionalisation plans in favour of something that isn't just a political sop to FF marginal seats.

    On it's own the WRC is a white elephant.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 756 ✭✭✭Zaph0d


    sliabh wrote:
    Is anyone planning to discuss the WRC?
    At first sight, the northern part looks like lunacy. I would imagine that if you run a railway through a depopulated area it will lose money and be very lightly used. Presumably, roads in east galway are not congested, so using a train will be slower for car owners than driving. Those who don't own cars would have to live in the pedestrian catchment areas of the WRC stations. How many people is that going to cover?

    However this is a poor argument. It boils down to: it looks like it won't work.

    The WRC Lobby (http://www.westontrack.com/) has produced a business plan including predicted passenger numbers, capital and current costs, and future revenues for this rail service.

    A better argument against the WRC would be to refute the assumptions in this business plan. I haven't seen anyone bother to do this.

    Of course it can be a good idea to build railways through sparsely populated land if
    • the area is near to a city
    • you plan to zone the surrounds of the railway stations for high density development
    You can then pay for the railway by taxing the landowners getting the high density zoning. This is how the outer parts of the London tube were financed and how DunLaoghaire council is trying to fund its Luas extension.

    Road congestion makes rail services more likely to succeed on a given route. I don't know if there is much congestion on the Galway to Limerick route but I doubt it.

    As the Cork-Dublin road improves, people may switch back to driving from using the train.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,028 ✭✭✭ishmael whale


    Eurorunner wrote:
    In case you havnt noticed, theres a tad of disproportion to 'planning stategy' of recent times. This has led to unbalanced development - the majority of which has been centred on the east coast - to the ultimate detriment of both the east coast and the rest - in terms of quality of life, housing issues and of course traffic congestion.

    I think we have to start facing the reality that the concentration of growth on the East coast is despite efforts to divert it West. Western development advocates might also face up to the fact that many of the problems are the result of their own tendancy to simply advocate any and all funding for the West without any thought of consequences – the WRC being an excellent example of this.

    As we have touched on in other threads, Galway Airport physically cannot be expanded to take jets. The essential reason for this seems to be the recognition by local interests that a proper airport in Galway would flatten Shannon and Knock. The reason the West’s two main airports are badly located is totally because of local lobbying. Yet, rather than admit that the problem is created within the region, we seem to get the continuing inaccurate statement that the reason the West attracts less growth is because of lack of investment, rather than because of what local campaigners seek funding for.

    Is there an alternative? Yes, the national spatial strategy. But that requires people to concentrate resources rather than seek a bag of swag for their county regardless of the consequences.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,746 ✭✭✭pork99


    I think we have to start facing the reality that the concentration of growth on the East coast is despite efforts to divert it West. Western development advocates might also face up to the fact that many of the problems are the result of their own tendancy to simply advocate any and all funding for the West without any thought of consequences – the WRC being an excellent example of this.

    I read somewhere that Dublin with about 30% of the country's population contributes 58% of the country's tax revenue. Don't know how true that is
    Is there an alternative? Yes, the national spatial strategy. But that requires people to concentrate resources rather than seek a bag of swag for their county regardless of the consequences.

    hit the old nail on the head there

    I'm all for a viable Cork-Limerick-Galway rail link. Maybe running it up to Sligo is a non-starter in terms of roi. Might it make more sense to start it in Waterford with a new line to Cork? So it would be a Waterford-Cork-Limerick-Galway which would make more sense in terms of population served.

    However in terms of priorities sorting out the network in Dublin should come first.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 173 ✭✭P11 Comms


    "In effect, I support P11's latest plan (the one after supporting the full WRC, after withdrawing support for the WRC and after reopening Tuam-Athenry only) except I'd add more commuter shuttles."

    The start-up of Limerick-Ennis-Galway is a good litmus test to begin with and should be implemented ASAP.

    The rolling stock on the current Limerick-Ennis service extended northwards via Gort is a logical progression. (this plan has been on the P11 website for almost a year btw and was designed to take the WRC away from the WoT Knock Airport agenda). This is why we pulled our support from the West on Track campaign.

    The primary issue from that point forward is for Galway, Mayo and Sligo County Councils to give up on their "one-off rural housing as a birthright" psychosis and start developing a proper land usage/transportation agenda to ensure that any future extensions of the rail corridor is developed based on real requirements and not on polticians such as Dana looking for votes.

    The Galway-Oranmore commuter rail corridor is another serious contender as well.

    Likewise, P11 is at the moment trying to get Waterford City and County Councils to follow Cork's lead in order to develop the New Ross branch along the same criteria as the Midleton branch.

    "if it ain't integrated, it ain't public transport" - Thomas Sheridan, Platform11

    www.platform11.org
    www.extendthedart.com


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,393 ✭✭✭Eurorunner


    @ishmael: I'm not going to bother addressing the points you've raised as thats ground well covered on a number of previous threads.

    he start-up of Limerick-Ennis-Galway is a good litmus test to begin with and should be implemented ASAP.
    Well, this is logical. I would also include Tuam in that but we're generally talking about the same thing here. There is definitely a need for such a service on this section above all. If they fúck up running this section of track, then i would not want them to go anywhere near extending northwards.

    Without doubt, the section from Tuam northwards is more contentious with regard to cost/benefit. Its all in the implementation - such a thing IS possible and we should aspire to taking on the likes of this and doing it successfully. However, we have a record of not getting value for money on public expenditure accross the board.
    The actions of the current Minister for Transport in his previous job spring to mind. He was behind the e-voting farce. Spending millions on a product that didnt make it ANY easier to vote...and for this, he got promoted!


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,028 ✭✭✭ishmael whale


    Eurorunner wrote:
    I'm not going to bother addressing the points you've raised as thats ground well covered on a number of previous threads.
    Indeed, they have been covered. Because of that any time I see someone making the unsustainable comment that the concentration of development in the East is the result of strategy or planning I feel it necessary to point out this is simply wrong.

    The WRC campaign has all the hallmarks of the usual ‘who cares, someone else is paying’ approach to infrastructural investment. P11 are right to oppose it and seek resources to be devoted to projects that might actually bring some benefit to people living in Ireland.
    Eurorunner wrote:
    The actions of the current Minister for Transport in his previous job spring to mind. He was behind the e-voting farce. Spending millions on a product that didnt make it ANY easier to vote...and for this, he got promoted!

    Absolutely agree. But things like WRC (if actually initiated), decentralisation, continuation of Shannon stopover as policies which equally fit into the e voting category - i.e. we blow a load of money and have nothing to show for it.


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,786 ✭✭✭antoinolachtnai


    Well, a lot of it comes down to money. For the interest payments on EUR 250m (around 8m/year), you could keep 20 or 30 buses running, operating a free service. Charging a few pounds, you could probably run 30 or 40. That might be enough to provide a service every half-an-hour.

    Granted, it would be a bit slower because of the state of the road, but the railway wouldn't be blazingly fast either, especially if freight and passengers were sharing the same lines.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,393 ✭✭✭Eurorunner


    Indeed, they have been covered. Because of that any time I see someone making the unsustainable comment that the concentration of development in the East is the result of strategy or planning I feel it necessary to point out this is simply wrong.
    Nothing unsustainable about it.
    The WRC campaign has all the hallmarks of the usual ‘who cares, someone else is paying’ approach to infrastructural investment.
    I agree in so far as there are plenty of people out there with a 'someone else is paying for it' attitude. Nevertheless, the WRC is a viable option IF properly implemented.
    Absolutely agree. But things like WRC (if actually initiated), decentralisation, continuation of Shannon stopover as policies which equally fit into the e voting category - i.e. we blow a load of money and have nothing to show for it.
    Decentralisation is a good idea. As always, the implementation is the let-down. Half hearted implementation which is solely based on hovering up enough votes at the next election.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,028 ✭✭✭ishmael whale


    Eurorunner wrote:
    Nothing unsustainable about it.

    It is not sustainable to say the West has been neglected. Dublin is only now getting overdue investment while the West is paved with airports.
    Eurorunner wrote:
    I agree in so far as there are plenty of people out there with a 'someone else is paying for it' attitude. Nevertheless, the WRC is a viable option IF properly implemented.

    WOT want us to believe that a Galway-Sligo service will be more commercially viable than the Dublin-Galway service. That's simply not realistic.

    Eurorunner wrote:
    Decentralisation is a good idea. As always, the implementation is the let-down. Half hearted implementation which is solely based on hovering up enough votes at the next election.

    I agree with decentralisation in the sense of giving power and responsibility to local authorities. But, as we know, that's not even on the agenda. The planned prgramme of shifting office staff around fro no reason other than to increase the cost of doing the same thing is inspired by the chronic lack of responsible advocacy of sensible regional development policies. The planned decentralisation follows the Bag of Swag approach.


  • Registered Users Posts: 78,352 ✭✭✭✭Victor


    Some of thoses costs look a little "back of the envelope". I'd love to know who'd do fencing for less than €10/m


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,393 ✭✭✭Eurorunner


    Dublin is only now getting overdue investment while the West is paved with airports.
    We're back to this US or THEM school of thought. For all the money that has gone down the shítter - and continues to do so - we could do both. We are not getting value for the taxes we pay when compared with other countries.
    WOT want us to believe that a Galway-Sligo service will be more commercially viable than the Dublin-Galway service. That's simply not realistic.
    If you want to discuss the Dublin-Galway route, feel free to open a new thread. Seeing as you brought it up though, with Belfast-Dublin being the most profitable, why bother with the rest - lets shut them all down then ismael :rolleyes:
    The planned decentralisation follows the Bag of Swag approach.
    Decentralisation - in its current incarnation - has been engineered for the purpose of winning the most votes at the next election.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,028 ✭✭✭ishmael whale


    Eurorunner wrote:
    We're back to this US or THEM school of thought. For all the money that has gone down the shítter - and continues to do so - we could do both. We are not getting value for the taxes we pay when compared with other countries.

    Clearly wasted money is bad for everyone, and sometimes the waste is caused as a result of a good idea badly executed. But, equally, problems are caused by misapplying resources to projects which should just be rated with a lower priority. Its not so much a case of Us and Them – its simply that the WRC has very little potential, whereas other potential developments do. In fairness, the Us and Them view has only started to come from the Eastern region in response to years of special pleading from the West, based on unfair and untrue slogans like ‘Dublin gets everything’.

    The past is behind us, but we need to learn the mistakes of the past. When, for example, we are confronted by the revelation that at a time when the country needed business Dublin’s runway was deliberately kept too short to take fully laden cargo aircraft to protect Shannon (and that as a result some aircraft now need to partially unload in Manchester – for who’s benefit?) I think we also need to acknowledge the mistaken policies of the past and recognise that the West’s needs were put ahead of Dublin’s. The public rhetoric of the Western lobby still trys to suggest the opposite.

    Dublin has underdeveloped roads and public transport. Our children go to schools with high pupil teacher ratios because of the drain on resources of one and two teachers schools in rural areas. At one time ten percent of the Education budget went on school transport, also for the benefit of rural areas. The bulk of CIE’s public subsidy goes on rail, and the bulk of that seems to go on services to Sligo/Westport/Galway (I say 'seems' because I cannot find definitive information on this). I have no problem about Western development campaigners saying ‘OK, the West gets a load of money and its getting us nowhere. We need to think nationally to see how to advance from here.’ In fact, that’s pretty much what I’m saying.
    Eurorunner wrote:
    If you want to discuss the Dublin-Galway route, feel free to open a new thread. Seeing as you brought it up though, with Belfast-Dublin being the most profitable, why bother with the rest - lets shut them all down then ismael :rolleyes:.

    I would have thought an obvious port of call in assessing the realism of the WRC would be to compare it to some existing routes, so I don't understand why you are suggesting this as needing a second thread.

    Yes, rail will likely require a subisidy which we hope will be balanced by other benefits. But this isn't a blank cheque - if we subsidise DART to the tune of €2 a journey, or some inter city service to the tune of €40 that doesn't necessarily justify subsidising something else to the tune of €100 a journey.

    Hard information on the subsidy paid to each service is hard to come by - which I think makes for poorer public debate. We need to know how much we are paying for what.
    Eurorunner wrote:
    Decentralisation - in its current incarnation - has been engineered for the purpose of winning the most votes at the next election.

    On that we can most definitely agree.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,393 ✭✭✭Eurorunner


    In fairness, the Us and Them view has only started to come from the Eastern region in response to years of special pleading from the West, based on unfair and untrue slogans like ‘Dublin gets everything’.

    I really dont want to take the thread off topic but....
    this cuts both ways. You gave shannon as an example and I agree - but the simple fact is that shannon is there now.
    I'm sure you will agree that the vast majority of development has occured on the east coast - and to some extent, this is to its own detriment. Meanwhile, areas in the west are still undeveloped. It is (and would have been) a good opportunity to focus on easing some of the pressure on dublin by pushing some of the development westwards. Thats a win-win scenario for everyone.
    I have no problem about Western development campaigners saying ‘OK, the West gets a load of money and its getting us nowhere.

    That principal can be applied all over ireland - and not just in the west. The wasting of public money. As i mentioned above, its all in the implementation. Projects are undertaken with the wrong approach and motivations ie. maximising votes. As an electorate, we seem to fall for this sort of thing - and so we are part of the problem - we vote these people in.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,028 ✭✭✭ishmael whale


    Eurorunner wrote:
    I'm sure you will agree that the vast majority of development has occured on the east coast - and to some extent, this is to its own detriment.

    I agree that vast majority of development has occured on the east coast, but I think it is important to recognise that this happened despite efforts and resources being deployed to send it elsewhere. I don't see the development in itself as detrimental - but the failure to plan for it was.

    I'm happy to see a workable plan for developing regional centres. But the key constraint there is the willingness of people in some regional locations being willing to let others be deemed the priority locations - i.e. people in Mayo accepting that Galway will be the main regional centre in the West. We are starting to go way off topic, and into the Spatial Strategy etc etc. Suffice it to say WRC is only superficially a project about promoting regional development. They're be more regional payback from developing Galway-Dublin services.

    Eurorunner wrote:
    That principal can be applied all over ireland - and not just in the west. The wasting of public money. As i mentioned above, its all in the implementation. Projects are undertaken with the wrong approach and motivations ie. maximising votes.

    Its not all in the implementation, and in fairness Dublin has only recently become a target for barrel-of-pork electioneering. Whatever facilities have been put in have been given grudgingly and are overutilised. I also find it difficult to think of an equivalent anywhere else in the country for the West Link toll bridge. Slap in the middle of our main road, paying for itself a multiple of times over, you really don't find this kind of thing anywhere else. I doubt - maybe I'm wrong - that any other toll road in Ireland will every so repay its investment so handsomely.

    On the other hand, Knock Airport is just a bad idea. Whatever services it manages to provide could be better done in another location, probably Galway. In some respects Knock Airport is the opposite of what you mean - its a bad idea, but well implemented.

    More Knock Airports won't do it for us. We need both a sensible strategy and good execution.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,558 ✭✭✭netwhizkid


    Originally posted by P11 Comms
    You are telling me that the Western Rail Corridor through the vast one-off housing wilderness of Mayo, Sligo and East Galway is a more important rail project that the CIE Dublin Rail Plan which will link up all the capital's main rail stations and deliver an annual rail ridership of 100 million passengers a year by 2015? Compared to 6 people using Tubbercurry station every day.

    Well I personally support the re-opening of the WRC, however I agree with P11 Comms that Dublin should get its integrated transport plan, i.e. luas extensions, the interconnector, metro etc. But I feel the government should also re-open the WRC, I acknowledge that that the Dublin situation is critical and they are of higher priority, but why not deliver on both transport solutions, I personally fell that from where I live the roads are being hammered and potholed by lorries and commercial vans yet these vans and lorries have to pay low road tax rates instead of taxing them in accordance to the damage they do to the roads. Like taxing a Nissan micra heavily for instance is madness the driver is already paying through the nose with petrol vat. If these Heavy vechicles were taxed more heavily then more funds could be made available for the Dublin rail plan and the WRC. I feel both plans are very important, yet making comments about grannies and knock doesn’t help however.

    Regards netwhizkid


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,028 ✭✭✭ishmael whale


    netwhizkid wrote:
    Well I personally support the re-opening of the WRC, however I agree with P11 Comms that Dublin should get its integrated transport plan, i.e. luas extensions, the interconnector, metro etc. But I feel the government should also re-open the WRC, I acknowledge that that the Dublin situation is critical and they are of higher priority, but why not deliver on both transport solutions

    Its not a question of Dublin or WRC, even if that's how the rhetoric goes. You're right to acknowledge that Dublin's case is so overwhelming it cannot really be argued against (although in the past Dublin's compelling needs were ignored). The people who should really be up in arms over the WRC are people in the other main cities. WRC would divert resources away from, say, Cork which on the one hand has scale which might enable it to compete with Dublin as a pole for growth and on the other would benefit from investment.

    I sometimes wonder if regional development activists concentrate on the Dublin vs the rest rhetoric to cloak the extent to which the real problem is competition between regions.

    netwhizkid wrote:
    Like taxing a Nissan micra heavily for instance is madness the driver is already paying through the nose with petrol vat. If these Heavy vechicles were taxed more heavily then more funds could be made available for the Dublin rail plan and the WRC.

    While I know you seem to be talking about rebalancing tax from private motorists to commercial, you might be interested to know that road usage yields about €1 billion in excise duties on fuel, something around €500 million in VRT and €720 million in motor tax. NRA budget for national roads seems to be about 1 billion a year. €477 million is the allocation for non national roads, the highest allocation ever in honour of the local elections. So road is already a net contributor to tax receipts.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,853 ✭✭✭Yoda


    Eurorunner wrote:
    The start-up of Limerick-Ennis-Galway is a good litmus test to begin with and should be implemented ASAP.
    Well, this is logical. I would also include Tuam in that but we're generally talking about the same thing here. There is definitely a need for such a service on this section above all.... Without doubt, the section from Tuam northwards is more contentious with regard to cost/benefit.
    Benefit? What would be the downside of getting Ballina, Castlebar, and Westport easier access to Galway, Ennis, and Limerick? Particularly as there are is a line there already between Claremorris and Athenry. In particular, it would be useful for some travellers to have easier access to Shannon.


This discussion has been closed.
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