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DART+ (DART Expansion)

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  • Registered Users Posts: 3,576 ✭✭✭Beta Ray Bill


    @bk

    Also are we really mixing intercity trains into the DART Underground! Haven't we already made that mistake, mixing different types of services like that!

    Just 4 track it! That's what winners do!

    No one is looking for that service right now cause it doesn't exist!

    350-400km is optimal distance for HSR. If it existed, people would use it. (M1 and M7/M8 are the busiest motorways in the country).

    DART underground would allow trains to go straight through (regardless of the route underground)



  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 22,571 Mod ✭✭✭✭bk


    So make it far more expensive and make the cost benefit analysis of DART Underground even worse!

    As I said, if the demand was there Aer Lingus would put a ATR on it or Ryanair, but they haven't. Nor has any of the intercity coach companies despite the ease which they could due to licensing and the international border. That all says to me that there is little or no demand.

    Also, we aren't getting HSR, the AIRR says higher speed rail. 200km/h, but I've heard talk of even 185km/h, which aren't HSR.



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,470 ✭✭✭KrisW1001


    For Inter-City services, there isn't a need for an underground through the city, just a rail connection of any kind (not shared with DART) between the three major trunk lines entering Dublin.

    In the original DART Underground world, Phoenix Park Tunnel was left out of the DART plans, and could have been used to allow Inter-City Belfast services from Heuston to the Northern line (with a bit of reversing at Heuston).

    Now, PPT has been included in the DART network, there's no other link available for Inter-City services.

    My concern about any mainline tunnel is that any intermediate station would inevitably become a de facto "Dublin Central", and there's absolutely no chance of building a station underground that would be big enough to fill that role.

    A radical idea would be to make Heuston the only mainline station for Dublin, create a new "big chord" (surface or tunnelled) from southwest to north to connect the services on the northern and western line that used to use Connolly (which is a serious bottleneck right now) into Heuston instead. Connolly and the city Loop line would then become DART only. This would need a better DART connection into Heuston than the planned "Heuston West", but the pattern of having separate mainline and "city train" systems is a one that works well in other cities.

    This would be really expensive, of course, but removing the need to connect Heuston and Connolly might make it a little more feasible.



  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 22,571 Mod ✭✭✭✭bk


    Well if you build DART Underground, you could move the DART's out of the PPT and into the tunnel, thus freeing up space for the intercity trains through the PPT to Connolly area.

    The issue with making Heuston the only intercity station, is that the Connolly/Docklands area is likely a more attractive destination for most intercity passengers then Heuston. Certainly I wouldn't see folks on the Enterprise being happy with a longer route over to Heuston rather straight into Connolly.

    Of course work would be needed on the Connolly/Docklands area to make it possible, but this are the advantageous I'd see:

    • Cork, etc. passengers would have just one stop change at Glasnevin to Metrolink (to Airport/Stephens Green), rather then two changes (Inetrcity → DART → Metrolink).
    • Connolly/Docklands is closer to the city, a more attractive destination then Heuston (more people live and work in this area) and is better connected to North/South DART lines for onward journeys.
    • No change for Belfast Eneterprise passengers, doesn't add to their journey time.
    • Could make an easy interchange between Cork and Belfast train, hell if you wanted you could even merge them into one service and have the Cork train carry onto Belfast!

    Of course this would all be on the assumption that you are building DART Underground anyway, if not, then maybe you'd look at your option. Though even with DART via PPT, I do wonder if you could still route one intercity train per hour through the PPT?



  • Registered Users Posts: 992 ✭✭✭riddlinrussell


    Dart Underground is still technically on the agenda for Dart+ though isn't it? Just renamed to Dart+ Tunnel (and likely being long fingered to the 2040s)



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  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 22,571 Mod ✭✭✭✭bk


    It is mentioned in the Greater Dublin Area Transport Strategy 2042, but in a fairly wishy washy manner. You are correct that they call it the DART+ Tunnel now, but I don't think it is actually part of the DART+ project.

    For me, the whole concept of DU was thrown into disarray by the AIRR, that instead talks about a railway tunnel under Dublin and including Intercity services using it!

    I felt the vision for DU was clear, a tunnel for DARTs under the city that would help resolve the issues of the loop line bridge.

    Now I really don't know what they are planning or what the vision/goal really is.



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,302 ✭✭✭Consonata


    I think Irish Rail want to move all intercities to Heuston and have Dart serve the others. I don't love it but I'm guessing that's why they're floating the Maynooth →Hazelhatch railway, so Sligo rail can terminate there.

    I'm unclear why IÉ aren't using North Wall at all. Seems like it could serve a similar if not better role than what Heuston has to do currently.



  • Registered Users Posts: 329 ✭✭Rugbyf565


    is the dart expanding to Wicklow town?



  • Registered Users Posts: 329 ✭✭Rugbyf565


    The biggest failure of the ministry for transport the last 30 years is the failure to properly connect Dublin with Meath, Kildare and Monaghan. I think you need a minister who’s not afraid to be ruthless about public transport links, with a heads will roll type approach. Leo Varadkar set this country back to the dark ages with his national roads plan, that’s one the biggest reasons in my book that he’s a grade A scumbag.



  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 22,571 Mod ✭✭✭✭bk


    There appear to be studying the possibility, but not confirmed/signed off yet.

    The idea would be for the DART's to run on battery power from Greystones to Wicklow Town, there would be no overhead cables.

    Yes, the AIRR mentions this. The idea is that DART trains would slow the Sligo train down and limit frequency. So by routing to Heuston, it can keep the speed up and not interfere with DART West trains and also possibly increase the frequency of the Sligo service. Part of this seems to be planning for a Navan service.

    Having said that, I don't see anything about connecting the Western lines with the Northern line are taking the Enterprise out of Connolly. I don't think they have any plans for that and they certainly wouldn't be looking to quad track Connolly if there were.



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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,126 ✭✭✭gjim


    I can remember what the country was like in terms of transport infrastructure in 1994 - you had to live within 30km of Dublin to experience the novelty of driving on a motorway. Making it a priority to connect Monaghan to Dublin by rail back then would have been truly bizarre. Even now making that a priority would be daft.



  • Registered Users Posts: 27,272 ✭✭✭✭blanch152


    There are probably more buses from Cork to London or Paris than from Cork to Belfast.



  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 67,938 Mod ✭✭✭✭L1011


    Eurolines southern services have not resumed. They actually ended pre-pandemic.



  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 4,977 Mod ✭✭✭✭spacetweek


    The national roads plan is the greatest thing to happen in this country in decades.

    Regarding a future Navan service, I suppose it will terminate in Spencer Dock, right? Not Connolly?



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,470 ✭✭✭KrisW1001


    The roads plan was great. There was also a rail plan, but a lot of that was invisible.. In 1994, continuously-welded track was only just being installed on the Irish network: you still had the clack-clack of the train passing gaps in track. New trains arrived in 2004 (carriages for Cirk Dublin) and then by 2007, we had replaced all the old carriages with brand new ones, or DMUs.

    Where we really missed out with rail was in the Cohesion Find payments in the mid-1990s.. at a time when the EU would pay 85% of project costs, we should have looked into starting the electrification of the rail nerwork, but I understand why roads came first: as bad as rail was, the roads were much worse.



  • Registered Users Posts: 13,859 ✭✭✭✭Zebra3


    Rail inside Dublin tho is still lagging far behind where it should be and this is causing a big hit on quality of life.



  • Registered Users Posts: 7,155 ✭✭✭prunudo


    it's a double edged sword, its really popular and needs investment for both expansion and improvement but because it is so busy, they are afraid of the backlash, due to closures and interruption to service that engineering works will bring.



  • Registered Users Posts: 375 ✭✭Ireland trains


    If planning for Dart West was granted tomorrow, how long would it realistically be until construction starts. Will the new depot be finished before the new fleet arrive.

    Is Dart North supposed to be lodged for planning soon, consultation began over 2 years ago it seems like an awful long wait for a relatively straightforward project.



  • Registered Users Posts: 10,164 ✭✭✭✭tom1ie


    <snip> because a load of roads got built?

    Ok.

    Mod Edit - Original post was edited for using unacceptable language.

    Post edited by Sam Russell on


  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 11,886 Mod ✭✭✭✭Cookiemunster


    The 'national roads plan' as you call it was conceived in the 90s by FF and mostly built by them in the 00s. Leo Varadker was first elected to the Dail in 2007 and didn't become a member of government until 2011. The roads had nothing to do with him.

    Post edited by Sam Russell on


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  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 67,938 Mod ✭✭✭✭L1011


    It is possible they mean the cancellation of the N20, GCRR etc under Varadkar; which was primarily because the decision of the Troika was that our ongoing funding was dependent on doing as little capex as possible.



  • Registered Users Posts: 10,164 ✭✭✭✭tom1ie




  • Registered Users Posts: 2,328 ✭✭✭Citizen  Six


    No, the trains will be here, and in testing, before the depot is built.



  • Registered Users Posts: 19,018 ✭✭✭✭murphaph


    I'm a big rail fan but nobody could seriously argue that the national roads programme was not badly needed. On road safety grounds alone something radical had to be done.



  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 22,571 Mod ✭✭✭✭bk


    Yes, the one complaint I would have is that we overly focused on roads during that period and too little on public transport, we should have taken a more balanced approach.

    For instance built the motorway network over 20 years instead of 10 and do more PT. For instance the last extension to the DART network was to Malahide in 2000. Then we just stopped!

    Instead we should have continued to build out what we now call DART+ during the early 2000's. Extended electrification to Drogheda, start working towards the western lines, etc. A big missed opportunity.



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,126 ✭✭✭gjim


    On the other hand, there was some value to focussing on a single transport issue at a time. It's more efficient in terms of resources. By setting up a continuous pipeline of work, a relatively stable team of specialist engineers, managers, etc. can be assembled just once and then kept busy through a series of projects over years. With experience, the efficiency of such a team grows considerably. Contractors and suppliers stick around and themselves improve with experience. PIt certainly felt like the rate of delivery in terms of km of new motorway grew to a phenomenal rate after what felt like a slow start in that 1990s road program.

    I don't see any reason why T42 shouldn't pan out similarly. In terms of scale, T42 is, by multiple factors, is the biggest and most ambitious program for public transport expansion since the foundation of the state. The state has never attempted anything of this scale. There's bound to be inefficiencies in the process exposed during the first iteration. Many are being addressed as we go - expansion and firings at the top for ABP, setting up a dedicate court for planning in the Four Courts, planning law reform, etc. - all this (and more to come I'm sure) will hugely benefit future PT projects.

    I remember when the Irish road network constituted its own genre of jokes. People had no problem talking like 1930s eugenicists or 19th century racist imperialists when discussing it - "Irish people are inately incapabable of managing infrastructure" would be typical. With regards to roads, that has now stopped - the motorway network (besides a missing link - the M20) is now impressive and the jokes about Irish roads have gone away. But the same mindset is apparent with respect to T42 - cynicism and fatalism to a ridiculous degree.



  • Registered Users Posts: 240 ✭✭Ronald Binge Redux


    The cynicism is well founded. The motorways were rammed through quickly. Rail improvements aren't, and the notion of turning existing rail alignments into cycleways has only abated lately.



  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 22,571 Mod ✭✭✭✭bk


    On the other hand, there was some value to focussing on a single transport issue at a time. It's more efficient in terms of resources. By setting up a continuous pipeline of work, a relatively stable team of specialist engineers, managers, etc. can be assembled just once and then kept busy through a series of projects over years. With experience, the efficiency of such a team grows considerably. Contractors and suppliers stick around and themselves improve with experience. PIt certainly felt like the rate of delivery in terms of km of new motorway grew to a phenomenal rate after what felt like a slow start in that 1990s road program

    But that is the exact same point I’m making about DART. We should have never stopped working on it and extending it. We should have kept the experienced team working on it.

    DART opened in 1984, the extensions to Malahide and Greystones didn’t happen until 2000 and then nothing since then!

    Very stop/start, at the least the extension to Drogheda should have continued in the early 2000’s and planning for the Western lines. Though ideally even better if that work had happened back in 1984.

    I agree with you and keeping the motorways rolling, but it was a very aggressive timeline, doing the same work over say 15 years, likely wouldn’t have had any impact on keeping the teams and experience around, while freeing up more money to work on DART instead.

    I have the same worry about LUAS, not much happening there now. I know those folks are most likely focused on Metrolink, but I do worry we will lose some skills and momentum related to Luas.

    At least Irish Rail seems to have learned this lesson and now have a pipeline of projects around the country.



  • Registered Users Posts: 2,328 ✭✭✭Citizen  Six


    Wasn’t there a German team working on the extensions? And everything was ran with good timing and precision?



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  • Registered Users Posts: 13,859 ✭✭✭✭Zebra3


    Wasn’t the early years of the motorway expansion riddled with corruption?



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