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Western Rail Corridor

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  • Registered Users Posts: 4,107 ✭✭✭John R


    Yoda wrote:
    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.

    If you define easier as meaning slower and further away then current public transport then yes it would be of great benefit.


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


    I am not sure what you mean. Ireland is not blessed with a particularly wonderful bus system. So what would be the downside of getting Ballina, Castlebar, and Westport easier rail access to Galway, Ennis, and Limerick?


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


    Yoda wrote:
    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.

    When you put it like that Yoda, of course I couldn't disagree with you. However, the point I was making at the time was with regard to financial viability. Ishmael suggested that whatever about the rest, if their was any possibility for the project to be viabile, it would be limerick=>ennis=>Galway.

    My suggestion was that they should open that section of track first (although i would include tuam). If whoever was given the franchise to run the service couldnt run it on a sustainable basis, then i wouldnt want them to try going any further with it ie. through to sligo.


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


    Limerick > Ennis > Galway would make great sense of course, linking the two cities. But if you are going to refurbish Athenry > Tuam, it makes little sense not to extend to Claremorris to link with the Dublin > Westport/Ballina line. A TART service (Tuam Area Rapid Transit) could shuttle between Claremorris and Athenry. I grant that going all the way from Claremorris > Sligo would be less attractive and less practicable in the short term.

    West-on-Track says that "For the cost of less than seven miles of motorway the entire line between Claremorris and Athenry could be re-opened within a year," does it not?


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


    Ok, well i think we are of the same mind in principal here. It would make good sense to have a first phase running from Limerick to either galway/tuam/claremorris - whichever is deemed most practical. A lot depends on the implementation of the service as much as the upgrade itself - if this section is not run with any degree of success, then theres little hope of the rest.


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


    I guess there's two stretches: Ennis > Athenry and Athenry > Claremorris. "Run with a degree of success"? If I could get to Galway in a couple of hours on the train rather than an hour and a half by car? I'd use it. ;)


  • Registered Users Posts: 78,357 ✭✭✭✭Victor


    Don't all Westport busses go through Galway?


  • Moderators, Music Moderators Posts: 6,524 Mod ✭✭✭✭dregin


    As has already been mentioned the area surrounding the WRC is quite sparsely populated. I think a line from Dublin > Navan > Cavan > Donegal is far more essential. The Northwest hasnt been served by rail for over 50 years at least and it is becoming increasingly more essential to growing towns like Letterkenny and Cavan


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


    The line from Claremorris to Athenry and Ennis is already there. It should be reopened, so it can serve to connect the other mainline services.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 173 ✭✭P11 Comms


    Yoda wrote:
    The line from Claremorris to Athenry and Ennis is already there. It should be reopened, so it can serve to connect the other mainline services.

    The line is in bits and will have to be completely rebuilt. North of Tuam is very dodgy as it was constructed under a light railway act and is infested with level crossings (61 from Tuam to Coolooney at €700,000 a pop to install) including the three major ones just south of Claremorris on the N17 which would do more to create traffic jams than solve them and would only provide a slow speed service unless a massive rebuilding project was implemented to either raise the railway line over the N17 or tunnel the N17 under the railway and for what... to get a train to a town with a population of 3,800 which already has 3 fully operational passenger lines running into it and West of Track are demanding another 2 (from Galway and Sligo) which would mean that the 3,800 souls of Claremorris would have more passenger rail lines running into their apparently disadvataged town than our capital city. Think about that. Claremorris, more passenger railway lines than Dublin if the Western Rail Corridor is fully built...

    Off the top of my head, I would consider this to be grossly unfair to the 60,000 citizens of say Navan who last saw a regular passenger train back in 1963. Kinda puts the whole "the west has no rail lines!" hysteria into perspective when you think about Claremorris and its 3 fully operational railway lines which have already been relayed with CWR and will be getting loads of new trains and services in the next few years and then compare that situation to Navan...Tallaght...Swords... Who are the the most disadvantaged when all the factors are considered?

    There are 150 people living in Ballygulin and West on Track is demanding they get a commuter rail service. Maybe the commuters in Navan can jump on a Tara Mines wagon and then get hauled to the North Wall.

    In the days when Bell Ferry were shipping thousands of containers nationwide from Waterford by rail, reopening the entire WRC might have made sense. But the picture is so very different today. Railfreight is in a state of flux with an uncertain future and commuter rail services is where its at now. There are major road building schemes north of Athenry either under construction, finished or being planned. Almost every family in the West of Ireland has almost 2 cars.

    The Ireland of the 1980's when this whole WRC concept began is no longer with us and the rail system of today is a completely different and vastly superior beast to what it was back then. So the concept of the Sligo-Limerick freight/intercity WRC is about 15 years out of date. The important thing is the line has north of Tuam been saved and who knows in 25 years or so, the situation may warrant a second look. But the focus of future rail development in that part of the country should be south towards Cork where the most customers are.

    With the reopening of the Ennis to Athenry line the Western Rail Corridor for the 21st Century is completed. The basic requirements will have been fullfilled in terms of integrated rail transport outside Leinster in the most populated region with only a short branch to Tuam to come at some later date.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 919 ✭✭✭jbkenn


    (61 from Tuam to Coolooney at €700,000 a pop to install)

    Just curious, where did you get that figure from? , how can a simple job cost so much.

    jbkenn


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 173 ✭✭P11 Comms


    jbkenn wrote:
    Just curious, where did you get that figure from? , how can a simple job cost so much.

    jbkenn


    IE Engineering Department. Because of the Railway Safety Bill, all road level crossings much be fully automated with all the modern trimings. These are technically complicated devices. The days of a gatekeeper in a hut coming out to open a gate are over. Likewise you cannot operate a modern passenger service were the driver has to stop the train and the guard get out and open and close the gates manually. This is how it was done on this line in the old days. This is before we even get to road traffic lights. For instance, here in Tubbercurry there are two main road juctions approaching the line from the Ballina Road and the N17 - each of these would need fairly major road traffic light arrangements. At Charlestown the WRC passes right though the main street (N17) as soon as it exits the station. So something major would be needed there. The three level crossings south of Claremorris would probably be unique in terms of modern rail transport operations anywhere in Europe - eccentric in fact. The only way out there to deal with the issue would be either over or under via embankments or road tunnels. We are into some serious civil engineering here and for the money that would cost we could get a lot more in terms of rail transport in areas of the country where the demand is real and not aspirational.

    This is because north of Tuam the WRC was built as a tramway (in the post famine years to provide employment) on the cheap, with a minimum number of embankments and cuttings. Even if you installed all the 61 level crossings from Tuam to Coolloney you are looking at an average line speed of 25-35 mph. How many cars will that take off the road in the land of one-off houses?


  • Registered Users Posts: 919 ✭✭✭jbkenn


    IE Engineering Department

    I find it hard to see how such simple technology can cost anything like €700,000, more like €7,000, couple of relays, bit of cable and a couple of barriers. Not exactly rocket science.

    jbkenn


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


    I have nothing against reopening the Navan line. But your attitude, P11, seems to be "my way or the highway" and "screw the west". That's not really very interesting. Our government spends oceans of money on pointless tribunals and all sorts of nonsense. I am happy to support your Dublin-based scheme. I lived in Dublin for many years. But there is enough butter to spread on all the bread, and NO, I don't think that people in the west of our country should be denied a rail service. The lines we have should be refurbished, and new lines should be built, for now, and for the generations to come.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 173 ✭✭P11 Comms


    Yoda wrote:
    I have nothing against reopening the Navan line. But your attitude, P11, seems to be "my way or the highway" and "screw the west".

    Platform11 is in favour of expanding rail services into the West of Ireland on the Sligo, Westport and Ballina lines to provide at least twice the frequency of present train services. We are also lobbying for a commuter rail network around Limerick. We strongly support the MayoLink concept which will utilise exsisting train services in the Mayo with some minor tinkering to create a regional train service in Mayo. Our website is filled with photos of the line reconstruction to Sligo and how great we think it all is that the track is being relayed, new signaling systems and new trains are being ordered. We are delighted with the possibility of a Galway-Ennis-Limerick commuter rail belt in the next couple of years.

    But because we point out that the line north of Tuam is so badly built trough the land of one off houses and that Claremorris already has a fantastic rail service all things considered we are automatically branded an anti-West of Ireland group?

    Sorry Yoda, but Ireland is not Switzerland or France and the majority of rail trainsport funds are VERY limited here and what money is out there goes to the regions of Ireland which have the greatest passenger potenital and not to the biggest whingers with the most highly cultivated victim complexes with what is essentially a left-over Victorian idealism.

    A modern, successful rail network is measured by how many people use the trains and not by the miles of barely used track and sleepy rural stations. Modern rail transport in Ireland has to think like any other business and target its majority investment towards the greatest market share. Irish people have never had more choices of transport than they do now, if railways are to expand and grow in 21st Century Ireland, it won't be as a social service, but as a real alternative to car commuting in the parts of the country were the most customers lie. It's a whole new game these days.


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


    I will answer you, P11, if you will please stop being peevish. Every time anyone makes the slightest criticism of you or of what you (appear to) say, you get defensive and attack. I am not a whinger, nor have I cultivated a victim complex. I have taken an interest in Ireland's rail challenges, and I live in Westport. I used to live in Sutton.

    Please try to be polite.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 173 ✭✭P11 Comms


    Nice Troll Yoda.


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


    That wasn't polite.


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


    P11 Comms wrote:
    Platform11 is in favour of expanding rail services into the West of Ireland on the Sligo, Westport and Ballina lines to provide at least twice the frequency of present train services.
    Super! It will be excellent, and enable people in those areas to get to Dublin much more easily. This is discussed on Iarnród Éireann's own site, too.
    We are also lobbying for a commuter rail network around Limerick.
    Great! Irish cities should benefit from such networks.
    We strongly support the MayoLink concept which will utilise exsisting train services in the Mayo with some minor tinkering to create a regional train service in Mayo.
    Grand! It would be nice to be able to go to Castlebar and Ballina more easily.
    Our website is filled with photos of the line reconstruction to Sligo and how great we think it all is that the track is being relayed, new signaling systems and new trains are being ordered.
    Hurrah! Line improvements are always to be celebrated. (I was unable to find photos on your site.)
    We are delighted with the possibility of a Galway-Ennis-Limerick commuter rail belt in the next couple of years.
    So am I! I've said so.
    But because we point out that the line north of Tuam is so badly built trough the land of one off houses and that Claremorris already has a fantastic rail service all things considered we are automatically branded an anti-West of Ireland group?
    I didn't brand your group as anti-West of Ireland. I was criticizing your (personal) apparent attitude. If that was ad-hominem, I apologize.

    But "one-off housing, one-off housing" is a bit of a mantra for you; you say it quite a lot. But that isn't the point. The point is that the only way people in Mayo (not necessarily the ones living along the line between Claremorris and Athenry) can get to Galway by rail at present is to go to Athlone, or to get to Limerick or Ennis is to go to Portarlington. No wonder no one does it.

    Yet there are four legs, Ennis-Athenry, Athenry-Tuam, Tuam-Claremorris, and Claremorris-Sligo, which people have taken an interest in. I'm not suggesting that they be made necessarily into high-speed intercity services. Rural Wales has some very nice short stretches which little two-car trains shuttle back and forth on, doing their business of getting people from place to place, to make connections, and so on. Even if you got Ennis-Athenry-Tuam running at higher speeds, it's just crazy to think, "Well, Claremorris has 'enough' rail connections, let's keep that energy from the MayoLink bottled up in Northwest Mayo, when it's 25km from Claremorris to Tuam. I can't see how it would be unacceptable and impractical and financially unfeasible to get some sort of connecting service on that stretch, one-off houses or no. That's what connections are for.
    Modern rail transport in Ireland has to think like any other business and target its majority investment towards the greatest market share. Irish people have never had more choices of transport than they do now, if railways are to expand and grow in 21st Century Ireland, it won't be as a social service, but as a real alternative to car commuting in the parts of the country were the most customers lie. It's a whole new game these days.
    Spatial planning has to go along with it. Disadvantaged areas remain disadvantaged if they are out of the way, and kept that way by design. Easier travel is good for business throughout the country. And some people will leave the City if it is possible for them to get to it and elsewhere at need. Indeed, when we decided to leave Dublin, my first requirement was that wherever we went had to have rail access to Dublin (for occasional shopping and the airport). Had I also the choice of getting to Shannon via Limerick by rail, for instance, I (and others in the West of Ireland who travel) would surely take advantage of it. And that too would be good for Ireland.


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


    Nice to see some progressive thinking on this subject. Would have to agree with all of the above.

    Whilst I concede the argument against the complete reopening of the line from Limerick right through to Sligo has some merit, there is no valid argument against opening an initial phase on the section of track where it is transparent to all that there would be greater demand. This should be done with an aspiration towards extending the line.

    This project (and indeed this thread) has nothing to do with W.of Ireland Vs. Dublin. The West/Mid-West needs this project on its own merit and for its own development. I do not begrudge Dublin further project investment but this does not have to be at the expense of this or other schemes.

    The fact of the matter is that there IS enough money in the system to tackle ALL of these essential schemes. Its just that theres so much money dissappearing down black holes in Ireland, its not funny. We do not get the value for money that most if not all of our european counterparts get for their public finances. Thats the heart of the problem.

    I travel the N17 into Galway on a daily basis. At the moment, this road cannot take the volume commuting into Galway. It contains the countrys biggest bottleneck at the moment at Claregalway. Whilst the NRA have had the good sense to opt for a new road from North of Tuam to Galway rather than just a byepass of Claregalway, they have not allocated funding. Given the pace of progress of such projects, it would be realistic to think in terms of ten years before this is ultimately sorted out - and one can only imagine the state this section of road is going to be in up until that point.

    P11, your suggestion that there would continue to be level crossings on a national route such as the N17 is ridiculous. Either this thing would be done correctly or it shouldnt be done at all. If issues like this suggest that the greater financial risk for the project lies within the northern stretch of the line, then all the more reason to go for a phased approach to assess the degree of success of the Southern section initially.

    And then that all leads to implementation. If the service is badly implemented, then we're screwed anyways. I wouldn't want the scheme extended if it doesnt have an operator that can provide a decent service.


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


    Rail is a fabulous way of moving large numbers of people, but it is an expensive and complex service to set up and run. You need specialised plant and equipment. You pay a premium for every piece of technology, because it is so specialized and so much has gone into testing it, even though it is often very old-fashioned in technology. You need specialized skills to keep the system running, and this inevitably means bringing in expensive contractors from elsewhere. The maintenance burden is very difficult on a single line system in particular, because all services have to be completely stopped for the period of the maintenance, however minor.

    It is true that you could refurbish the railway for a pretty low cost per kilometre. The problem with this is that the standard of the line that resulted wouldn't be that great, and would have a low maximum speed (maybe 60 or 70 miles per hour at most). That's just not fast enough to really provide an attractive alternative to road transport. Upgrading to faster speeds would cost a great deal more.

    The other problem is that the railway provided would be a single line. This, together with the slow speed, would greatly restrict the frequency of the service. It would depend on the layout of course, but you could probably only run a service hourly or less frequently, so there would only be one service on the peak. Things would get even worse if you tried to provide a freight service on the line. This level of service isn't really enough to attract passengers to use the service and population to settle near the stations, especially if a road alternative is available.

    Most critically, you need large volumes of passengers to make the whole investment viable, even to cover the maintenance/running costs. The problem is that the area we are talking about has a fairly low population and is unlikely to yield the hundreds of passengers per hour that are needed.

    From what I can see, it would be more attainable in the short-term to upgrade the bus service through providing bus priority and bus lanes through towns using the line's RoW if feasible.

    An operating subsidy is probably also needed, but this wouldn't be that much in the grand scheme of things. You could have 10 new buses on the road and staffed, full-time for maybe EUR 3 million a year. On a 2-hour-long route, that would give you a frequency of one bus every 24 minutes, which wouldn't be bad. (Any fares you collected would be a bonus.) This yearly cost is tiny in the overall context. EUR 3m would only cover the yearly interest on a EUR 100m rail investment.

    You could get off the blocks a lot quicker too, because a modernized bus service could be in place by 2006 if you had the political will behind you. Best case, it will be 2011 before the WRC could be opened again (2 years lobbying and consultants reports, 1 year's planning, 3 years to tender, build and snag). Personally, I think it would be more complex than that to plan and build.

    It is quite possible that at some point in the future the population will have swelled sufficiently to justify a rail service, so the option should be left open.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 173 ✭✭P11 Comms


    Eurorunner wrote:
    P11, your suggestion that there would continue to be level crossings on a national route such as the N17 is ridiculous. Either this thing would be done correctly or it shouldnt be done at all.

    Tell that to West on Track, this is there idea and they have budgetted for in their proposal.

    The WoT proposal wants the Coolooney to Claremorris part put back in before they started a Limerick to Galway service and that the initial plan they had was to run a branch from Coolloney to Charlestown and then to Knock Airport.

    When the working group report set up by the DOT comes out - I wager you it'll be 180 degrees away from what West on Track are demanding and almost fully in agreement with everything I have posted on this thread and what P11 have maintained since the moment we pulled out of the WRC reopening compaign - you simply cannot get away from the fact that population density and decent rail transport are the same thing.

    To do it properly (and you are right this is the only way it should be done) we are looking at another 100 million onto the bill the overall bill - that's enough to get a commuter service to Navan.

    West on Track even have a bumper sticker which does not even include the Galway Ennis Limerick section as Part of the WRC. The most viable part. That group was always about the northern half and Knock Airport and the southern half of the WRC was treated as an afterthough.

    They constantly spoke about how the West was being left-out by Dublin, but all along they were doing the same to the likes of Ennis and Gort and Limerick. But that's ok - it is their group and they are entilited to develop their own policy and good luck to them - at the end of the day it'll either stand or fall according to international best rail transport practice. But by all accounts their vision for the WRC has been turned upside-down with the recent annoucments by IE and what P11 stated last spring. That's becuase you cannot get away from real life transport, population density, demographic and economic realities.

    P11 does not work for regional development (but the more the merrier), only gettting trains to who needs them the most and where they'll be the most successful so we can point out as many rail transport success stories nationwide as possible - then maybe we can change the culture in this country more in favour of public rail transport to a positive image and not as some kind of charity case and burden on the taxpayer.

    It's a national rail system run for real demand and not according to county GAA jersey ethics. Keep the railways busy and they'll grow and expand through sheer demand. That's Dublin, Cork, Galway and Limerick commuter first and foremost and not north of Tuam.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 173 ✭✭P11 Comms


    It is quite possible that at some point in the future the population will have swelled sufficiently to justify a rail service, so the option should be left open.

    Excellent and honest post.

    The important thing is that the line has been retained and will be there when it is needed. What would be great would be to now see groups in the West start to lobby for serious commercial and residential development along the corridor to build up the densities. This would greatly speed up the case for the move towards Sligo.

    A decent bus service in the West integrated with current rail lines (similar to the systems operating in Switzerland which meet arriving and departing mainline trains) would be a great method to develop a public transport users culture here as well. The QBC from Galway to Tuam which is currently being developed is a great idea and will be a a stepping stone towards reopening the line for commuter rail service in time.


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


    P11 Comms wrote:
    The WoT proposal wants the Coolooney to Claremorris part put back in before they started a Limerick to Galway service and that the initial plan they had was to run a branch from Coolloney to Charlestown and then to Knock Airport.
    Hmm..ok, i wasn't aware that this was the proposal. In which case, I would be completely against this aspect of the project.

    So if the proposal was for Limerick -> Galway or Tuam, (leaving the rest until such time as it meets the criteria), would you be in favour?


  • Registered Users Posts: 11,001 ✭✭✭✭Flukey


    More infrastructural work needs to be done west of the Shannon. It would help Dublin if people can be encouraged to live and work in other places. So Dublin will benefit too. We have a disproportionate amount of people in Dublin, even compared to the other major cities, let alone the other regional areas. So the WRC should certainly be going ahead, in part at least. It can be done as things are being done in Dublin. In time it can be extended. So they should start work ASAP, for the good of that area and of Dublin.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 173 ✭✭P11 Comms


    Eurorunner wrote:
    Hmm..ok, i wasn't aware that this was the proposal. In which case, I would be completely against this aspect of the project.


    This is why Platform11 had sirens go off when we read their proposal and then pulled our support. We thought they were fantastic organisation before we read that.

    Here is they agenda from Page 12 of their proposal:

    http://www.platform11.org/wrc_phases.jpg

    Note that Athenry-Ennis is reduced to almost an afterthought at the end of the list and that Knock Airport connected to the rail network is mentioned more than any other part of the agenda.

    Here is the cover of the proposal:

    http://www.platform11.org/wrc_cover.jpg

    It clearly reads KNOCK INTERNATIONAL on the train headcode. (Again for some reason Knock Airport is the constant centre of their focus)

    Here is the Car Sticker:

    http://www.westontrack.com/carsticker.htm

    Again it's all the Northern Half of the WRC with the most viable Galway-Ennis-Limerick section consigned to something called "southern section" which leaves out Ennis and Limerick.

    Eurorunner wrote:
    So if the proposal was for Limerick -> Galway or Tuam, (leaving the rest until such time as it meets the criteria), would you be in favour?

    100% in favour and we always had been. We just had to derail this "Knockrail"/Northern Half agenda which was at the core of West on Track's thrust. There are so many other ways of developing rail transport in the West of Ireland than spending hundreds of millions on a single track line which is for the most part incapable of providing a modern rail service.

    The Athenry-Ennis and Athreny-Tuam lines form an intregal part of our South and West Rail Plan http://www.geocities.com/weehamster/P11SWrailplan.JPG (which we are currently developing as regional a counterbalance to the brilliant CIE/Dublin Rail Plan) and we are absolutely delighted that it is very likely to go ahead in the next few years.

    If West on Track's efforts brought this about sooner, then we salute them. But they were well off the mark with their overall ethos and it had to be pointed out that money could be better spent on rail transport elsewhere (including much of the west of Ireland) which would work to a far more effective degree.


  • Registered Users Posts: 78,357 ✭✭✭✭Victor


    Flukey wrote:
    It would help Dublin if people can be encouraged to live and work in other places.
    All well and good, but those places need to be sustainable, rather than lets build an airport on a mountain.... then lets build a railway to it .... then **hope** people come.


  • Registered Users Posts: 78,357 ✭✭✭✭Victor


    Oh, a little late, but no name calling.


  • Registered Users Posts: 11,001 ✭✭✭✭Flukey


    It is indeed a bit of a chicken and egg situation, but you have to start somwhere Victor. You do it step by step. Build a bit of infrastructure and it will create some activity and more infrastructure and so on. Even Dublin started like that.

    Not everywhere outside of Dublin is a remote location with nothing there, with maybe an odd bare hill where we could build an airport. There are sustainable communities outside of Dublin. There are large towns and cities there. It's not all remote locations, with dirt track roads, no water or electricity and not a man woman or child to be seen within a 10 mile radius. You are not starting from scratch on a greenfield site. A lot of it is there, it just needs to be built on. So we would not be building a road in the middle of nowhere and a few buildings and then sitting back hoping someone will come, as your comment sort of suggests.

    There is a lot going on in Dublin that could just as easily be based elsewhere, like industry and other developments. One way of looking at Dublin's infrastructure is that it is fine, but the problem is that there are too many people using it. So part of the strategy should be to encourage people to live and work elsewhere. We are trying to convert people from using private transport to using public transport and free up the congestion in Dublin. We should also try to convert them from using Dublin transport to using the transport of other towns and cities which will also free up Dublin congestion.

    Much of our modern economy that is based around technology is to a large extent location independent. Most of their business is done over a computer or over a phone. To the customer and even to the providers, it doesn't matter whether they are sitting in the IFSC or in an office in Ballybay Co. Monaghan - a completely random choice. If the infrastructure was there, the service could be provided and accessed just as simply. There is a lot of business in Dublin that could just as easily operate in any part of Ireland, as long as the infrastructure was there. Many places do have it. Broadband etc. is available in lots of places. Road and rail are improving. Property and rent would be cheaper for the businesses there and there would be less traffic to contend with for those getting to work and shorter commutes etc. The cost of living is cheaper.

    I am a Dubliner but still I would like to see more done around the rest of the country. It would make all our lives easier. So yes, build some infrastructure, promote it properly and people will come. They come to Dublin for those very reasons after all and there are many quality of life benefits to the other parts that Dublin does not provide. The rest of the country just needs to be promoted more. There are many attractions to bring people and business out of Dublin, as I've outlined above. Some of the infrastructure is already there. What is needed is to promote it properly and get people using it and then extend it as required. It's worked in Dublin, unfortunately too well.

    So the answer to your point is that there are already plenty of well established and sustainable places outside Dublin that could easily and should take more people. That will make them even more sustainable. So let's get more infrastructure into them and promote them more and then people will come, just like they have been doing already in those places and of course in Dublin.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 78,357 ✭✭✭✭Victor


    Flukey wrote:
    Much of our modern economy that is based around technology is to a large extent location independent.
    You do realise how bad the internet is in Mayo, don't you?


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