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M20 - Cork to Limerick [preferred route due in September 2021]

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  • An interesting post was made on SABRE...
    This scheme is being advanced more seriously than I thought- Friends of Mine living in a beautiful House and Grounds along the existing N20 near Cork have been served with a Compulsory Purchase order. They must be out by 2010. They are going along with other people. My Friends told me it is the Farmers they are having trouble with. They have spent a huge amount of Money on the House and grounds and are now old. As much as I like seeing the road being built I think there was no reason for an online upgrade from Cork - Rathduff. They will move next spring/summer. I hope the house is not left idle for vandals etc. until work starts.

    I'm not sure whether I believe this or not, since they don't even have the motorway order published yet. Perhaps the CPO is for something else. But if it does happen to do with the M20 scheme then perhaps progress is being made slightly quicker than we suspected.




  • I would say definitely yes!

    We need a continous safe and reliable road link between or 2nd, 3rd and 4th cities (Cork, Galway and Limerick). Work has started on the Crusheen-Gort section of the N18 so that will only leave one more section of the N18 for Galway to have a continous good road connection to Limerick.

    I live in Galway and I'm sorry to say but I consider Cork (or anywhere South of Limerick) to be pretty much cut off from me. I haven't been to Cork in over 12 years and that's solely because of the current road (especially South of Limerick). Too much hassle, takes too long and it's not at all a nice driving experience.
    Galway-Cork is approximately the same distance as Galway-Dublin yet it could take not far off twice as long to get to Cork as it would Dublin (this is before the M6 is even fully finished!). This simply should not be the case. Not to mention there's probably more of a chance of being in an accident driving to Cork from Galway than driving to Dublin.

    I wouldn't mind but I really like Cork.

    NRA - Get the M20 built! The sooner the better!




  • I can confirm that the post above is related to the M20 online widening near Rathduff... they want the people out of the house by 2010.

    Looks like the M20 is moving along pretty swiftly despite the current economic climate. It'll be a shame when it hits a brick wall when the government suddenly has to decide how to fund it.




  • The putative M20 has been taking quite a bashing over on indymedia: http://www.indymedia.ie/article/88845




  • Furet wrote: »
    The putative M20 has been taking quite a bashing over on indymedia: http://www.indymedia.ie/article/88845

    The man suggest the N20 is upgraded and coach services are run on it...

    Fair enough...

    But how do you upgrade a road that is narrow in many parts, has tonnes of accesses onto it and has very little room for expansion...

    How much does that cost?


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  • Btw, I just had pleasure of reading the latest lame T21 newsletter...

    http://www.transport21.ie/Publications/upload/File/News-Letters/T21_newsletter_Nov_08.pdf

    I was expecting there be a schedule of works for the coming years to take into account the current budget crisis, but no it simply re-iterates what we've heard a thousand times before and pats the government on the back for things opened years ago. :mad:




  • BluntGuy wrote: »
    The man suggest the N20 is upgraded and coach services are run on it...

    Fair enough...

    But how do you upgrade a road that is narrow in many parts, has tonnes of accesses onto it and has very little room for expansion...

    How much does that cost?

    its pretty strightforward to upgrade Blarney to Rathduff as there is spare land and some bridges already exist and crucially the old N20 still runs paralell. There are issues with access points which would need to be addressed if the road is to be motorway spec but these are reasonably minmal.North of the railway bridge at rathduff I think a new line is the preferred (and necessary) option.




  • That article is true. We do need a direct rail link, but we have a high quality coach service already. (Lets face it, BEs Cork to Galway service is hourly).

    But we need the M20 AS WELL. Why should we have to have either an M20 OR a good rail service? Why cant we have both? And yes, the absolute farce that is Limerick Junction should be adressed ASAP.




  • Somebody made a good point about the German autobahn system.

    I think that is the system we're going for in Ireland, and in my opinion it's a good idea.

    The majority of German autobhans are simple D2M, just like all of our inter-urbans. But because of the variety and choice, they don't get blocked up.

    I speak very little German, but I know the German word for traffic jam, stau. The autobahn is notorious for mega-jams.

    In the past 20 years the Germans have been pursuing more sustainable transport options. Most of their motorway system was built between the 1950s and 1980s. In the 21st century, they've gone for a completely different transport approach involving ICE-trains, maglev, guided busways, light rail, u-bahns, etc.

    Of course, Ireland refuses to learn from 50 years of European and American mistakes and has stubbornly pursued developer and car-led planning. We had a blank slate and loads of cash, we had the chance in the 1990s to become the role model country for the 21st century. Instead we implemented transport plans drawn up in the 1960s and 1970s.

    When Indymedia says this, they are completely on the ball: "And far from being modern and progressive, motorways were in reality old-fashioned and negative infrastructure from the 1960s, generating CO2 emissions that accelerated climate change, increasing rather than reducing traffic, reinforcing oil dependency, and being profoundly uneconomic due to their huge secondary costs."




  • In the 21st century, they've gone for a completely different transport approach involving ICE-trains, maglev, guided busways, light rail, u-bahns, etc.

    Of course, Ireland refuses to learn from 50 years of European and American mistakes and has stubbornly pursued developer and car-led planning.

    Any idea why that may be? Let me give you a clue.

    www.citypopulation.de

    Germany - city population (greater urban area) - top 5
    Berlin 3,416K
    Hamburg 1,771K
    Munchen 1,312K
    Koln 995K
    Frankfurt 659K

    Ireland - city population (greater urban area) - top 5
    Dublin 506K
    Cork 119K
    Galway 72K
    Tallaght 64K
    Blanchardstown 63K

    ICE and Maglev in Ireland - it's only a matter of time - well maybe if I hug some trees and smoke the good stuff ;)


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  • Lennoxschips, I partly agree with you.

    We should be building much better public infrastructure, like ICE, etc.

    However not at the expense of the road building projects. Most of the best countries environmentally have excellent road infrastructure, that is because they would rather have cars cruising along a motorway, then stuck in grid lock spewing out fumes.

    We needed the MIU's to improve safety, reduce pollution and to improve our economy (fast and safer transport of goods).

    However I agree with you that we should have built a whole new ICE type rail infrastructure at the same time as the roads. We should have built new ICE rail tracks beside (or in the centre of) each of the new motorways, just like they did in Israel.




  • That article is true. We do need a direct rail link, but we have a high quality coach service already. (Lets face it, BEs Cork to Galway service is hourly).

    But we need the M20 AS WELL. Why should we have to have either an M20 OR a good rail service? Why cant we have both? And yes, the absolute farce that is Limerick Junction should be adressed ASAP.

    I don't think we necessarily have to choose or can't have both. We can't have both built at the same time, the money just isn't there.

    But if they build the M20, it's a long term investment. There probably won't be a need for any significant investment in the road link between Cork and Limerick for a very very very long time afterwards. So a few years down the line after the M20 has been built, there's no reason why funding couldn't be found for a direct rail link between Cork and Limerick in my opinion.

    We definitely aren't going to get both immediately, it needs to be decided which project should get priority and which should wait a few years.

    I think the M20 should be given priority. It will encourage more investment in Cork and Limerick than a rail connection would, it would save lives and our 2nd, 3rd and 4th cities would be connected by a quality road network. The M20 would also greatly enhance coach journeys between Galway/Limerick and Cork in that they would be faster, more reliable and a more comfortable journey - this extra appeal would increase numbers using such services.




  • corktina wrote: »
    its pretty strightforward to upgrade Blarney to Rathduff as there is spare land and some bridges already exist and crucially the old N20 still runs paralell. There are issues with access points which would need to be addressed if the road is to be motorway spec but these are reasonably minmal.North of the railway bridge at rathduff I think a new line is the preferred (and necessary) option.

    The access points issue is already being addressed. Several landowners on the route, I can now confirm, have been told to be out of their houses by 2010. (I don't mean the CPO has been published yet, but the landowners have already been told exactly what is going to be happening to their properties).

    Theoretically, the M20 could begin construction in 2010, but like I said, despite how rapidly it's moving now, when it hits the brick wall called "funding", I'm bracing myself for it to slow down big time.
    In the past 20 years the Germans have been pursuing more sustainable transport options. Most of their motorway system was built between the 1950s and 1980s. In the 21st century, they've gone for a completely different transport approach involving ICE-trains, maglev, guided busways, light rail, u-bahns, etc.

    That is the only problem with your point...

    Had Germany been in the same situation we were in now, I can garuntee that they would be rolling out road infrastructure projects quicker than ICE, maglev etc.

    Germany are in a position to be going for high-tech, new public transport solutions because they have a decent road-network already constructed, as do most of the other wealthy European countries.

    Once we have our road infrastructure completed, then yes, we should put the majority of emphasis on good public transport, particularly in Dublin, which is a disgrace by anyone's standards. But until then, yes, we do need to invest heavily in roads. The need for private transport is not going to go away anytime soon. While I encourage a switch to public transport, we should also be trying to make private transport a viable long-term alternative as well, using cleaner, more environmentally-friendly fuels and production methods. Because let's face it: you can't have public transport EVERYWHERE in the country. People will still need cars (or whatever they may be using in the next 100 years) to get around.

    We need a balance. To get as many people as possible using reliable, high-speed public transport (including coaches), and to have the others driving environmentally substainable vehicles. The latter, of course, requiring, good road infrastructure.
    That article is true. We do need a direct rail link, but we have a high quality coach service already. (Lets face it, BEs Cork to Galway service is hourly).

    A high-quality coach service that can only reach its potential with high-speed roads.
    KevR wrote:
    But if they build the M20, it's a long term investment. There probably won't be a need for any significant investment in the road link between Cork and Limerick for a very very very long time afterwards.

    That's true. Until of course we hit our Achilles' heel...

    Junction Design.

    And if you've seen the current plans for the M20/M22 junction, you'll know exactly what I mean.




  • BluntGuy wrote: »
    And if you've seen the current plans for the M20/M22 junction, you'll know exactly what I mean.

    I haven't and do you have a link? Totally agree the standard at major junctions is poor.




  • D.L.R. wrote: »
    I haven't and do you have a link? Totally agree the standard at major junctions is poor.

    http://www.corkrdo.ie/files/NRR-FIGS-25%20Junction%20Layout%20Yellow%20Route.pdf


    You can see they've gone for pretty much the same design that failed at Dunkettle.

    And don't even look at the N8/N22 (or M8/M22 as it will most likely be) junction...




  • I dont think its a valid comparison trying to bracket Irelands new Motorway system with Germanys, i seriously doubt first of all that there will Motorways in Germany as quite and as under utilised as we will have in Ireland.

    Secondly on the issue of public transport, if the MIU programme had been rationalised then we could have had excellent public transport links in all our urban areas.

    But in our wisdom as a nation we decided to focus nearly exclusively on roads development, incorporating the mentality that every town needs a bypass into our NDP & Motorway plans, only in time will the ridiculousness of there been duplicate Motorways across Meath/Tipp/Kilkenny/Laois etc. become clear.




  • John J wrote: »
    Any idea why that may be? Let me give you a clue.

    www.citypopulation.de

    Germany - city population (greater urban area) - top 5
    Berlin 3,416K
    Hamburg 1,771K
    Munchen 1,312K
    Koln 995K
    Frankfurt 659K

    Ireland - city population (greater urban area) - top 5
    Dublin 506K
    Cork 119K
    Galway 72K
    Tallaght 64K
    Blanchardstown 63K

    ICE and Maglev in Ireland - it's only a matter of time - well maybe if I hug some trees and smoke the good stuff ;)

    in your rush to look clever, you've missed the point i was making

    what i said was that the germans are opting for public transport over motorways now. they realise that motorways are no longer the future.

    obviously an ICE or maglev line between cork and limerick isn't justified (just as a motorway isn't), but other rail improvements could be built




  • what i said was that the germans are opting for public transport over motorways now. they realise that motorways are no longer the future.

    While I agree with your sentiment, I disagree with the point you seem to be trying to make, that we should be building rail rather then the MIU's.

    Germany built a world class motorway network in the 50's and 60's and is now coming to the limits of the capacity of that network due to big population increases, so they are now building a world class rail network.

    Had it been the other way around, had they built a world class rail network in the 50's and 60's, I've no doubt that they would be building the autobahn network today. That is because developed countries need both types of networks.

    Here in Ireland we really did need to build the MIU network before we did anything else, such a network is the bed rock that a healthy economy is built on.

    Now that it is almost complete, bar a couple of by-pass projects, must of the attention will be focused on building a (hopefully) world class public transport network in Dublin. Then after that perhaps we will go back and look at the rail network again.

    In the meantime we should do everything possible to promote bus use on the MIU's. We should have non-stop, frequent, direct city to city bus services, with very comfortable modern buses, toilets on board, wifi internet and power at every seat for affordable prices on these MIU's and you will nearly put Irish Rail out of business.

    Perhaps then Irish Rail will look seriously at improve the performance of their service.




  • what i said was that the germans are opting for public transport over motorways now. they realise that motorways are no longer the future.

    I don't agree that the Germans are opting for public transport over motorways. They have a good motorway network in place and it is now reaching it's capacity so they are now complimenting the motorway network with major investment in public transport.




  • Motorways are like arteries. You need basic high capicity roads to open up and access geographic areas. If you only build them on a needs basis you have concentrated urban sprawl. And remember they are as much for the transport of freight and HGV's then the daily commuter.

    British model = motorway built on car usage of road = unbalanced urban development (midlands for example)

    German model = geographic network irrespective of usage = more ballanced distribution of population

    Irish model =(i think) the german model. eg dublin-cork will have M7/M8, M9/M25 and M11/M25 all similar options and can spread loads, which reduced congestion and a need to have larger roads.

    The arguement of public transport v's roads is a stupid one. you need both.

    Also the arguement that other countries are not building roads anymore but investing in trains is also unvalid...because they already have their network of roads in place.

    Ireland needs both a motorway network in order to develop for the future, as well as a new renewed public transpot (railway) network. Not either or!


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  • Between 1995 and 2005 Germany built 1000 km of autobahn - according to wikipedia, anyway.




  • Furet wrote: »
    Between 1995 and 2005 Germany built 1000 km of autobahn - according to wikipedia, anyway.
    A lot of that would be upgrades in East Germany, presumably?




  • There is a very good reason why the Germans are no longer building a lot of Autobahns - they don't need to. We are embarking on something they started before WW2. We are that far behind. We *have* to spend lots of taxpayers money on Motorways - the country simply cannot afford not to, otherwise we will be less capable of taking any advantage of an upturn in the economy. That's a big part of what did us the last time - we had the money but no infrastructure. It's about time certian individuals dug their heads out of the sand and stopped wishing that every road in the country was a boreen. Even if we didn't have the level of traffic on the roads that we do have - we need Motorways anyway as part of this very advanced concept called "forward planning".

    We saw the lack of foresight the last time we underinvested in the roads - the Nenagh bypass was only a single carriageway and already has to be upgraded because of a lack of intelligence and a lack of forward planning.

    If we settle for substandard single carriageway again instead of faster, safer and crucially future proofed Motorways then we are shooting ourselves in the foot. We will be forced to do things like the Nenagh bypass or soon enough the Croom bypass all over again.

    You might say that we could just go for Dual Carriageways- but these are exactly the same as Motorways just with less restrictions - so what's the point in not going staight to the top and doing the right thing for the country?

    Why not just do it right the first time? Are we really serious about ignoring the fact that Motorways reduce fatalities by as much as a factor of 10 over mere single carriageways?

    When we do catch up with the road network the Germans have - then guess what - we won't need to spend billions on new roads either.

    I have nothing against investment in public transport - anything that allows me to get where I want to go by car faster and with less traffic I'm all for but I am 100% opposed to investment in it at the expense of the much needed and long overdue investment in roads.

    The car is far too good an invention for people to ever want to give up. Even with Congestion charges, pay as you drive schemes, hikes in tax, whatever other crackpot ideas some left wing socialists come up with - we still all drive in our cars.

    Why? Because it's quite simply better than any other form of transport that exists. The proof of the car's superiority is the fact that such a large majority of people still use them even with all the the things like speed scameras, extortionate parking taxes, outrageous road tax, VRT, fuel tax, insurance and all the other considerable expenses of running a car.

    The ironic thing is that those who are against Motorways on environmental grounds would be complaining if they packed to capacity too - "because not enough people are using public transport" of whatever excuse they feel like using. You can't have it both ways folks!




  • It should be obvious that the sooner these projects get built, the sooner they'll help the country to function better. Don't see the point in waiting 12/24/36 months for the N11 or Newlands, for example. Its a hindrance not having them there already. That hindrance costs money every single day.




  • dowlingm wrote: »
    A lot of that would be upgrades in East Germany, presumably?

    Presumably. A lot like the upgrades we're making.




  • E92 wrote: »
    You might say that we could just go for Dual Carriageways- but these are exactly the same as Motorways just with less restrictions - so what's the point in not going staight to the top and doing the right thing for the country?

    An important point. Or, as someone suggested here lately, if we are serious about safety and improving N roads, we'd -- get this -- build a load of 2+1! (Right. Try changing a flat tyre on 2+1. Or fancy being stuck behind a combine harvester on the 1 side of a 2+1. Would these 2+1s be grade separated? Because, if yes, then why not go the whole hog, future-proof them, and make them 2+2 to motorway standard. That way, when the impending environmental armageddon does eventually strike, we can use them to channel all that flood water away.)
    When we do catch up with the road network the Germans have - then guess what - we won't need to spend billions on new roads either.

    Another good point. When the roads are built, that'll be it. If we get them done by 2020, they'll still be there in 2220. There won't be any need for more investment in roads - it'll be levitating trains or what have you from then on.




  • Furet wrote: »
    An important point. Or, as someone suggested here lately, if we are serious about safety and improving N roads, we'd -- get this -- build a load of 2+1! (Right. Try changing a flat tyre on 2+1. Or fancy being stuck behind a combine harvester on the 1 side of a 2+1. Would these 2+1s be grade separated? Because, if yes, then why not go the whole hog, future-proof them, and make them 2+2 to motorway standard. That way, when the impending environmental armageddon does eventually strike, we can use them to channel all that flood water away.)

    2+1 has a bad rep,but it does work in that it is safer then a single carriageway road it would replace. It just is not effective on roads like the N20 due to the Mallow-Cork being a busy commuter road.

    I think 2+1 has a future as a low cost upgrade for roads that have a profile like the N71, eg roads that need an upgrade but dont require full blown 2+2 or Motorway, especially for quieter sections.

    Future proofing is an admirable but expensive concept, what gets future proofed and what doesnt?




  • I am strongly in favour of linking Galway to Cork by motorway.
    That is my position on the M20. I would be more amenable to building it from Limerick to an M8 junction at Mitchelstown, but that's not going to happen at this stage. However, good points have been made about the need to bypass the likes of Charleville et al, and there are too many deaths on the existing road as it is. So yes, I would say 'build it'.

    Historically, Ireland has always been very internally disconnected. That fact was reflected by the preponderance of different forms of Gaelic spoken on the island, and in the wildly varying accents that one finds down to this day. Unlike southern, central and western Europe, Ireland was a great unknown until the Tudors made a determined effort to map the interior from the late-sixteenth century onwards to facilitate their conquest.
    The coastline, on the other hand, was very well known to continental cartographers, sailors, and governments. Galway was a major port, and had mercantile links with the Portuguese and Spanish empires in early modern times. So too did Cork, Dublin and Waterford. Christopher Columbus travelled to Galway in the 1470s, and Irish seamen crewed several galleons in King Charles V's expanding navy. In the fifteenth century Galway citizens very probably knew more of Lisbon and San Sebastien than they did of Clonmel or Cashel (these were major settlements at the time).
    But, to the early modern explorer Ireland's interior was an unknown wilderness of forest and bog. What lay behind the ring of mountains that encircle the coast like a great natural wall was a wonderland filled with massive, haunted woods and enchanted, malefic marshes. Werewolves, spirits, fairies and demons were as real as one's own neighbour.

    I mention this not only because of the historian in me, but because of a post I read here the other day by a Galway contributor who said Cork felt 'remote' from him. As someone living in Cork, Galway feels fully remote from me, too. And no, I'm not advancing that as the argument in favour of the M20. I'm doing it to point out that Ireland still suffers from a fundamental disconnect. A rail line will partly alleviate this, as will a motorway connection. Together, they would unify the west coast in a way that has never been done before.




  • I believe the M18 and M20 are as necessary as the other MIUs. Cork is less than 100 km from Limerick and yet the journey can take up to two hours, sometimes even more. That's ridiculous.


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  • The Germans now only build motorways if the traffic numbers justify it.

    The Danes want to build a bridge between Puttgarden and Rodby, which would be a motorway bridge, linking Hamburg and Copenhagen.

    You'd think that such a route would need a motorway, but the Germans have looked at the traffic numbers and decided they'll leave the road on their side of the bridge as a single carriageway road for the forseeable future.

    That's the attitude they've adopted.

    If modern day German engineers had planned the Irish road system they wouldn't have built half of the motorways we have. "Sure we may as well build a motorway while we're at it" is not an argument in their book. Indeed, Ireland will soon have more motorway per capita than Germany.


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