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M7 - Nenagh to Limerick

  • #1
    Closed Accounts Posts: 220 ✭✭ Declan30


    Well Folks Dont see and thread on this Motorway having checked through the forums.
    Just want to set it up to track the M7 progress.

    So Far the Nenagh to Limerick motorway looks on Target.The are making good progress on it as i travel the road fairly often and you can see the work being done.
    The bypass section of the nenagh motorway was due to finish in oct2008.However would say due to the bad weather over the past 6 months this has slowed down the progress a lot.

    The Mountrath Section has started a fair old pace as well. Hopefully they might open the bypass of the town with in the next 12 months.

    Anyone got any more Views or updates .


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Comments



  • how is the nenagh bypass section comming along? I've only gone past there in the dark recently.




  • The nenagh bypass is simply a widening of the road and the placement of a concrete barrier the length of the road with one extra on/of ramp at the Thurles underpass.

    http://www.nra.ie/RoadSchemeActivity/LimerickCountyCouncil/N7NenaghLimerick/Map,15456,en.pdf

    Its a slow process to widen the existing carraigeway because of the backfilling against the verges which are extremely steep. The bridges have been widenned also which was always difficult.

    Normally with a bridge you need to place extra support on it by lifting the bridge and placing more column beneath. With the traffic passing over the bridge they could not lift the bridge causing them to build more foundations to support columns.

    You may have noticed the Lagan have built a batching plant next to the underpass at nenagh limerick exit. This shows that somewhere on the road they are laying blacktop.

    It is a long 28km dual carraigeway so its takes a while.

    I was an engineer on the 19km Fermoy bypass and that took long enough. I was one of the Irish Engineers on the German built bridge over the blackwater.




  • Good Update and tks for that.

    It is an 28km Dual carraigeway from the end of the nenagh bypass to Limerick.

    The 10km of the nenagh Bypass was due to be completed by oct 2008 .

    Any idea when this will be finished.As i have seen many cars breakdown and small accidents on this section and no place to pull over or overtake and traffic backs up very quick.


    The nenagh bypass is simply a widening of the road and the placement of a concrete barrier the length of the road with one extra on/of ramp at the Thurles underpass.

    http://www.nra.ie/RoadSchemeActivity/LimerickCountyCouncil/N7NenaghLimerick/Map,15456,en.pdf

    Its a slow process to widen the existing carraigeway because of the backfilling against the verges which are extremely steep. The bridges have been widenned also which was always difficult.

    Normally with a bridge you need to place extra support on it by lifting the bridge and placing more column beneath. With the traffic passing over the bridge they could not lift the bridge causing them to build more foundations to support columns.

    You may have noticed the Lagan have built a batching plant next to the underpass at nenagh limerick exit. This shows that somewhere on the road they are laying blacktop.

    It is a long 28km dual carraigeway so its takes a while.

    I was an engineer on the 19km Fermoy bypass and that took long enough. I was one of the Irish Engineers on the German built bridge over the blackwater.




  • I have no idea. They are starting to back fill and should be grading and laying blacktop in the next few weeks. It should by right, speaking from experience, take another 2-3 months looking at where they are now.

    Thats not taking into account delays, taking back up blacktop that does not pass tests or weather complications or even a death.




  • I have no idea. They are starting to back fill and should be grading and laying blacktop in the next few weeks. It should by right, speaking from experience, take another 2-3 months looking at where they are now.

    Thats not taking into account delays, taking back up blacktop that does not pass tests or weather complications or even a death.

    As an engineer, could you tell us a little about blacktop? In general, do you have to wait for a certain amount of time before applying new layers of it in order to leave the older layers 'settle' a bit?

    Also, concrete medians. I notice that very often these don't seem to have much of a foundation at all. I know the median at the M8 Horse and Junction Jockey, for instance, was basically set on top of asphalt - and I have photos that back this up, here on boards.ie. How, then, does the median get its strength?


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  • Furet wrote: »
    As an engineer, could you tell us a little about blacktop? In general, do you have to wait for a certain amount of time before applying new layers of it in order to leave the older layers 'settle' a bit?

    Also, concrete medians. I notice that very often these don't seem to have much of a foundation at all. I know the median at the M8 Horse and Junction Jockey, for instance, was basically set on top of asphalt - and I have photos that back this up, here on boards.ie. How, then, does the median get its strength?

    Mostly there are 3 layers of thick tarmac applied to new roads which is the Interntational standard. The bottom layer is only 14mm thick and the two layer on top of that are 22 mm thich. The final layer is called the "Wearing Course" which is a laid slightly different to the other two bases.

    The lower bases are laid with the aggregate(stones) already in the mix. They come heated from the quarry and due to the heat insulation it takes a while for them to cool down. We probe the trucks as they pour into the back of the spreader and after its being applied and just before its being rolled. We also takes sampled whilst its being poured and test them in the lab. I hated testing the raw material because it hardens so fast away from the truck.

    Anyway the top layer comes just as wet tarmac in the trucks and a little jcb runs up and down filling a spreader which follows on behind the machine that laying the concrete. They lay wet tarmac and the machine behind which is simply two wheels and a lawnmower engine "walks" behind the machine spreading aggregate which are bigger stones that the other two layers and they must be spread in a specific order to the road. We test these on ours hands and knees a few days later by using a test tube full of sand. We upturn it on a 20 mtr section over and over and over. We spread the sand into the cracks between the aggregate until all the sand has fallen through the cracks. We measure with a ruler how far the sand spreads out in 8 points and using a mathematical calculation understand if that 5 mtr section is passable. The point of the test it to make sure that the section of the road has a Skib resistance. The closer the stones are together makes it a worse skid resistance because it can become like a sheet of ice. The further they are away makes its a bumpy road and difficult to gain grip in a skid or bad conditions.

    If the road is four lanes long and 29km and it can take 4 tests per 20 mtrs and each test takes around 5 minutes you can imagine how long it takes. AND It must be dry.

    The company laying the tarmac also every so often lay down a little square 500mmx500mm tray which collect the aggregate as its spread by the spreader. They then weigh this to make sure there are enough stones in an appropriate spread.

    Tarmac should not be poured in the rain for fear of water pockets beneath the tarmac and tarmac must be over 78 celcius coming out of the truck.

    I have ordered many sections of roadway removed in my time. It costs a fortune but the tarmac laying company foot the bill and not the contractor because they should not be pouring tarmac that does not meet criteria. There are long long long meetings by the "brass" of the companies about this. I tend not to get involved. The senior engineer fought my corner.

    Concrete Barrier

    First off concrete can only be poured in temperatures above 3celcius. The concrete barrier must be poured after the base layer or the second layer and always before the final layer. Thats the foundation. :D These barriers are heavy, extremely heavy. 10 trucks could hit one at the same time and might possibly move it slightly.

    The barrier is poured using a specific machine imported from the US. I always worked with a company from Co Limerick. Aboslute head the balls. The machine can be fitted with different shaped "shuttering" to create different types of barrier, kerb, shouldering etc. Its sooo god damned slow. Truck arrives with very contentious looking concerete. You cannot pour wet or even slightly wet concrete into it because it would collapse coming out the other side. Its a slump of 40, if that means anything to people. Wet concrete for foundations is usually a slump of 140. This stuff is nearly dry. Its very hard to work with but that dryness creates the shape. Prior to it being laid there are many many steel rebars welded together over the long stretch and the machine scooped these up in the line and into the machine. These then become part of the conrete barrier providing its support in the central part of it.

    Later after the barrier is dry we cut bore holes in it where required. It may be required on a sloped corner to allow water to pass from one side to the other for fear of creating a large puddle.

    Time between laying layers in Tarmac. You have to wait as long as the enginner needs to test the previous layer of tarmac. If the previous layer is not tested you are not allowed to lay over it. This is NRA guidlines and if a guy is laying your driveway dont expect it. However, essentially you could lay another layer of tarmac over it within 3 hours. You might have seen during a light rain driving past tarmac layers that their are masses of steam coming from the road. That truck that just delivered the tarmac could have been sitting there over 90minutes yet the tarmac is still piping hot. As soon as its leaves the confines of being squashed together in the truck and laid out it will cool quicker. You can realistically drive on tarmac after its laid in around 30 minutes. I used to walk on it instantly and if you stop your stuck but if you keep going your feet squash in a bit but instantly pop back into a flat area as soon as you clear it. Magic roads :D

    I hope this helps.




  • Cheers for that fantastic post.

    (Sorry for derailing thread slightly, but it does apply to the M7 - and it is very interesting.)




  • Furet wrote: »
    Cheers for that fantastic post.

    Your Welcome. Its not often I get fanstastic and my post in the same sentence. I spend much time in AH forum where I can live out my sarcastic alter ego. :D;)




  • Furet wrote: »
    Cheers for that fantastic post.

    (Sorry for derailing thread slightly, but it does apply to the M7 - and it is very interesting.)

    +1

    Seriously interesting stuff. I'm passing by the M25 and M9 works every day and I always wonder why things are done the way they are. Excellent post!




  • Your Welcome. Its not often I get fanstastic and my post in the same sentence. I spend much time in AH forum where I can live out my sarcastic alter ego. :D;)


    Well, do drop into Infrastructure and Commuting & Transportevery now and then - a lot of us are total road nerds and would love to here your insights.

    Back to the M7! I took the train to Dublin from Cork on Thursday and noticed what can only have been the M7/M8 PPP south of Portlaoise. It was just haul road, very crudely laid out. This scheme seems to be very slow in making progress, unlike many other projects currently underway


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  • Furet wrote: »
    Well, do drop into Infrastructure and Commuting & Transportevery now and then - a lot of us are total road nerds and would love to here your insights.

    Back to the M7! I took the train to Dublin from Cork on Thursday and noticed what can only have been the M7/M8 PPP south of Portlaoise. It was just haul road, very crudely laid out. This scheme seems to be very slow in making progress, unlike many other projects currently underway

    I do not know much about this but AFAIK its a continuation of the motorway to link up with the new bypass around nenagh - Limerick.

    NRA:

    This Design & Build scheme is high quality dual carriageway approximately 34 km in length. The existing N7 carriageway will remain in place to serve local road needs. The scheme starts at the most easterly junction of the Nenagh bypass and finishes at the Borris-in-Ossory interchange which will be constructed as part of the M7/M8 Scheme.




  • Nice to have a dedicated M7 update thread and great to see some fantastic posts already...

    I'll update if I ever drive past any of the under construction M7...




  • Furet wrote: »
    Well, do drop into Infrastructure and Commuting & Transportevery now and then - a lot of us are total road nerds and would love to here your insights.

    Back to the M7! I took the train to Dublin from Cork on Thursday and noticed what can only have been the M7/M8 PPP south of Portlaoise. It was just haul road, very crudely laid out. This scheme seems to be very slow in making progress, unlike many other projects currently underway

    Looks like we're going to have a split M7 (Naas to Portlaoise and Limerick to Nenagh) and an M8 from Cork to Cullahill by the end of 2009 at the latest, but no motorway connection between the two until sometime in 2010. :(




  • Looks like we're going to have a split M7 (Naas to Portlaoise and Limerick to Nenagh) and an M8 from Cork to Cullahill by the end of 2009 at the latest, but no motorway connection between the two until sometime in 2010. :(

    So basically, arguably the most important stretch of the motorway is going to be finished last.

    Hopefully when the other schemes are finished, they'll transfer some manpower up there and try and get it sorted out quickly, but that'll be the missing link in the transport system.

    And there is no chance of a partial opening.




  • You cannot move manpower around the place because its not the NRA that employ workers.

    Each section of roadway in this country is tendered out to European companies meaning that an Irish company can build one road and a Latvian company another section of road so that when one is finished you cannot simply transfer staff around.

    Also because of the tendered price you cannot simply spend more by hiring in more staff because you have not accounted for it originally meaning you wont be repaid by the NRA because both of you have agreed on one price.

    The early finished bonus companies receive is usually worth millions of EURO but companies are going to sacrifice this to hire more staff because they have enough time to finish it and still make their bonus without having to hire staff.

    Companies and in business to do business and business is what they do - Richard Pryor




  • Many Tks Lads for the updates keep them coming.Quirke Folder you are doing a Great Job.

    The reason why i opened this Up is my Intended is from kildare and we both travel the M7 a lot So the sooner it is built the better.

    I will Update as Much as i can when i see the progress being made :)




  • I noticed something on the Nenagh bypass yesterday as I was returning from Dublin. The offramp markers i.e the 300m, 200m & 100 m markers were in fact blue and not green making sure that it will definately be a motorway, at least that section anyway.

    Or will it be like Cork - Dublin where you speed up to 120 only to slow down again on an indentical stretch of road which is not classed as a motorway even though its to international motorway standards.

    Ugggh Ireland :mad:




  • I noticed something on the Nenagh bypass yesterday as I was returning from Dublin. The offramp markers i.e the 300m, 200m & 100 m markers were in fact blue and not green making sure that it will definately be a motorway, at least that section anyway.

    Or will it be like Cork - Dublin where you speed up to 120 only to slow down again on an indentical stretch of road which is not classed as a motorway even though its to international motorway standards.

    Ugggh Ireland :mad:

    The Dublin-Limerick interurban has been reclassified as motorway up as far as the Limerick SRR. This includes all unbuilt sections from Portlaoise-Limerick.

    see here>

    http://www.transport.ie/viewitem.asp?id=10193&lang=ENG&loc=2270




  • I noticed something on the Nenagh bypass yesterday as I was returning from Dublin. The offramp markers i.e the 300m, 200m & 100 m markers were in fact blue and not green making sure that it will definately be a motorway, at least that section anyway.

    I am unsure of the progress on the Nenagh bypass, but is the section already under motorway restrictions? :confused:




  • BluntGuy wrote: »
    I am unsure of the progress on the Nenagh bypass, but is the section already under motorway restrictions? :confused:

    I would not imagine so because the sign I refer to was partially hidden under black plastic which was torn so I could see the sign.

    The section is still under construction and will be for some time. It will be a long way around for permit drivers.


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  • I would not imagine so because the sign I refer to was partially hidden under black plastic which was torn so I could see the sign.

    The section is still under construction and will be for some time. It will be a long way around for permit drivers.

    Oh yes, well then I would imagine not. I remember when the M8 wasn't under m-way restrictions, ugly black plastic everywhere.

    However, the Nenagh Bypass is quite strange. Technically, it IS now a motorway (since September 24th the SI was passed that legally defined it as such). It's a funny one...

    With regards to the scheme, could somebody give me details, however brief, of how the widening is being done and what the status of the new section is at moment. Thanks... ;)




  • Now thats an interesting one :D




  • BluntGuy wrote: »
    With regards to the scheme, could somebody give me details, however brief, of how the widening is being done and what the status of the new section is at moment. Thanks... ;)

    Not to sure how the Nenagh section is being widened. Was on the Limerick end at the weekend. There appears to be some good progress with the tie in to the Limerick SRR. I can't figure out why they are raising the Motorway over the existing roundabout instead of building a bridge over the motorway. Seems a more costly approach to me, more filling, wider bridge etc. Then again I'm not a civil engineer.

    I did hear that the completion of the road may be delayed to the end of 2009. This is only something I have heard and is definitely not to be taken as a given. Anybody else hear of problems that could impact the completion of the project? I certainly hope it isn't




  • BluntGuy wrote: »
    With regards to the scheme, could somebody give me details, however brief, of how the widening is being done and what the status of the new section is at moment. Thanks... ;)

    Not to sure how the Nenagh section is being widened. Was on the Limerick end at the weekend. There appears to be some good progress with the tie in to the Limerick SRR. I can't figure out why they are raising the Motorway over the existing roundabout instead of building a bridge over the motorway. Seems a more costly approach to me, more filling, wider bridge etc. Then again I'm not a civil engineer.

    I did hear that the completion of the road may be delayed to the end of 2009. This is only something I have heard and is definitely not to be taken as a given. Anybody else hear of problems that could impact the completion of the project? I certainly hope it is




  • BluntGuy wrote: »
    With regards to the scheme, could somebody give me details, however brief, of how the widening is being done and what the status of the new section is at moment. Thanks... ;)

    Not to sure how the Nenagh section is being widened. Was on the Limerick end at the weekend. There appears to be some good progress with the tie in to the Limerick SRR. I can't figure out why they are raising the Motorway over the existing roundabout instead of building a bridge over the motorway. Seems a more costly approach to me, more filling, wider bridge etc. Then again I'm not a civil engineer.

    I did hear that the completion of the road may be delayed to the end of 2009. This is only something I have heard and is definitely not to be taken as a given. Anybody else hear of problems that could impact the completion of the project? I certainly hope it isn't true. When I passed the Newport junction it was a Sunday so there was no work taking place, but there didn't seem to be many machines on site.




  • To add a little detail to this thread.

    I was passing back from Dublin today along the bypass and actually had batteries in my camera so I recorded two videos of the bypass and some pictures of the unfinished sections.

    Here we see a video of the Mid point of the nenagh bypass. You will notice that on either side of the road is the barrier. Behind this there are intermittent layers of tarmac. This section is mostly complete. Further along the widening of the section is not as advanced. The machinery is still clawing it back and the tippers are still drawing it away. Further along again its back to being on the road(pun) to being completed. In the sense that they are up the the second layer of blacktop.

    http://s62.photobucket.com/albums/h97/quirke/?action=view&current=Nenagh-Limerick-1.flv

    In this image we see just south of birdhill on a regional flyover access bridge. This is facing North. I say North because in road building Dublin is north to everything so if you are on a bridge and somebody asked you which side to test you always point in the direction(in your head) of Dublin and work out from there which side is east west. Anyway, facing North we see the barrier is down and the road is awaiting aggregate to be graded, kerbing along the edge of the carraigeway and then blacktop.

    Nenagh-Limerick3.jpg

    In this image you see many many structures. I am considering this to be one single structure. As this area is an utter bog I am going to presume these are the structural beams to support the carraigeway from dipping/sinking and to prevent water build up around the carraigeway due to the lack of drainage.

    Nenagh-Limerick2.jpg
    Nenagh-Limerick4.jpg

    In this Video you will see under the bridge from where the picture of the north bound was taken. I am driving my car along this bumpy stretch so excuse the images.

    http://s62.photobucket.com/albums/h97/quirke/?action=view&current=Nenagh-Limerick2-1.flv


    Here is a link to the bypass website
    http://n7nenaghtolimerick.com/index.html (picture of a UK road BTW)




  • From the looks of it, Q2 2009 (the official opening date) now seems hopelessly optimistic.

    I always new the Nenagh Bypass was going to be painful, but...




  • I noticed something on the Nenagh bypass yesterday as I was returning from Dublin. The offramp markers i.e the 300m, 200m & 100 m markers were in fact blue and not green making sure that it will definately be a motorway, at least that section anyway.

    Or will it be like Cork - Dublin where you speed up to 120 only to slow down again on an indentical stretch of road which is not classed as a motorway even though its to international motorway standards.

    Ugggh Ireland :mad:

    What sections of the Cork-Dublin road are you talking about?

    There are motorway restrictions on all sections of divided roadway on the Cork-Portlaoise route, except for the Watergrasshill - Dunkettle section which will be put under motorway restrictions next year.

    When construction is complete, the entire Dunkettle-Portlaoise route will be under motorway restrictions.

    There may be some sections where there are lower speed limits than the standard motorway limit of 120 km/h, but these will be in place for safety reasons.

    The only section of the Dublin-Portlaoise route (the N/M7) that's not under motorway restriction is the Naas dual-carriageway from Dublin to Naas (N7).

    That section can't be put under motorway restrictions because of the numerous private accesses and other issues.

    You might not like this but to imply that it's an 'only in Ireland' issue is over-reacting.




  • The M8 will be entirely under 120 km/h restrictions...

    Need speed limit signs (though they are still covered in plastic) were erected on the Watergrashill-Dunkettle stretch a while ago.


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  • What sections of the Cork-Dublin road are you talking about?



    You might not like this but to imply that it's an 'only in Ireland' issue is over-reacting.

    I am reffering to watergrasshill to Dunkettle. The reason I refer to this is because I was only an Engineer on this road and I know its built to motorway standards so it should be converted right now to a motorway to coincide with the opening on the Fermoy bypass.

    Its a glorified expensive speed trap currently.


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