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(Article) Infrastructure Warning Over Soaring Population

  • 01-03-2010 7:53pm
    #1
    Closed Accounts Posts: 6,093 ✭✭✭ Amtmann


    Around 90pc of the island's population will be living in just eight city regions over the next two decades, a new report claimed today.

    The study by leading engineers warns with the population North and South set to soar from 6.25 million to eight million by the 2030s, the country's infrastructure urgently needs to be brought up to scratch.

    According to the research, the greatest headcount will be along the Dublin-Belfast corridor, which will house four million people.

    A south west corridor linking the cities of Cork, Galway and Limerick will have around two million inhabitants with many working in pharmaceuticals, biomedicine and agriculture.

    The report, Infrastructure For An Island Population Of Eight Million, urges the Government to focus investment on eight key cities - Dublin, Belfast, Waterford, Cork, Limerick, Galway, Sligo and Derry.

    John Power, director-general of Engineers Ireland, said the country needed to get on a par with top international competitors.

    "It is clear that there is still an acute infrastructure deficit in Ireland," he added.

    "This study provides a framework that can help the Government to direct funds to where maximum return on investment will be provided."

    The report, compiled by Engineers Ireland, the Irish Academy of Engineering and InterTradeIreland, says better quality transport and broadband connections are needed to make the country more competitive.

    It highlights the Dublin-Belfast corridor as being crucial to attracting inward investment and calls for improved air and port services in the area.

    It also recommends close links between universities and industry as well as highly developed education, health, and cultural services.

    The report's authors claim greater private sector involvement could help fund the developments and predict the possible establishment of an 'island infrastructure bank' to provide long term finance from both the public and private sectors.
    http://www.independent.ie/national-news/infrastructure-warning-over-soaring-population-2084624.html

    Report Attached.


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Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 488 ✭✭ fresca


    The question now is ... is this what we really want?

    this = 2 densely populated "zones", one east, one west..

    If the answer is yes then we do nothing.
    If the answer is no, then we need to question this governments spatial strategy.

    personally, i would prefer to see more expansion of our cities outside dublin, ie. cork, limerick, waterford, kilkenny, galway, belfast, derry, armagh.

    and also the promotion to city status of "strategic" towns such as wexford, tralee, sligo, etc.

    the imbalance between the population of dublin (capital) and all other cities / major towns is not right (imo). i believe that we should be looking for a more balanced approach...


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,093 ✭✭✭ hi5


    Isn't the population falling due to current emigration?


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,091 ✭✭✭ marmurr1916


    Report on the same topic from the Irish Times:
    A PREDICTED population of eight million people on the island by the 2030s will require major new roads, railways, energy sources, communications and flood defences, according to a new North-South development report compiled by Engineers Ireland and the Irish Academy of Engineering.

    The report notes the proposals for an eastern bypass of Dublin city and suggests constructing a tidal barrier across the bay, with the bypass on the top alongside a rail line, could prove an effective solution.

    The report, commissioned by Intertrade Ireland, a body established under the Belfast Agreement, deals with the implications of what has been predicted for Ireland over the coming two decades, with the major increase in population and the main economic development occurring on the Dublin-Belfast corridor.

    Development is also predicted of an “Atlantic arc” linking Galway, Limerick, Shannon and Cork, as well as the development of “city regions” around Waterford, Sligo and Derry.

    Infrastructure for an Island Population of Eight Million claims to be the first report to make a detailed assessment of the needs of the entire island, while factoring in climate change and energy security.

    According to Liam Connellan, of Engineers Ireland, the report also differs from past reports in not offering different development scenarios, but in recognising that “this is where people will live and this is what we need to do to service them”.

    While the report is an analysis of population requirements for the 2030s, its authors claim that decisions need to be taken now on how to invest in the necessary infrastructure.

    In terms of energy security the report calls for an immediate debate on whether we derive power from coal, gas or nuclear fuel. Without offering an opinion on the merits of any, it says policy makers must decide the mix, which may involve the use of nuclear-generated power arriving through electricity interconnectors. But Mr Connellan said “a decision on the mix has to be made”.

    Much faster and more powerful communications must also be developed, according to Mr Connellan, who said just 7 per cent of the island had broadband available in speeds of more than 10Mb/sec. Japan and South Korea were already well ahead of these and he said “we should at least plan to be where they are now, over the next 20 years”.

    The island would also have to develop a water infrastructure network and the report supports plans for a pipe from the Shannon to Dublin. But it also supports plans for a pipe between Dublin and Belfast with feeds from Lough Neagh and other rivers along the route.

    Half the population, some four million people, will live along the Dublin to Belfast corridor, which will require massively improved transport services.

    With proper infrastructure this would offer a world-class development pole along the lines of Cologne- Frankfurt, Washington-Baltimore, Glasgow-Edinburgh or Vancouver-Seattle.

    The report envisages a high-speed, high-frequency rail link between Belfast and Dublin. This would reduce journey time from about two hours and 10 minutes to one hour and 15 minutes, with trains every 15-30 minutes.


    If the population of the Dublin-Belfast corridor does increase to 4 million people, better rail links will have to be a priority.
    The report also recommends major development of the M1 motorway to a four-lane road delivering average speeds of up to 110km/h.

    I presume they mean D4 between Dublin and Belfast. Parts of the M1 already need to be upgraded to D3M.
    About one-quarter of the population will live in a southwestern arc from Galway through Limerick to Cork, and the report recommends major expansion of the rail services in Cork city, with the development of new lines and services to the airport.

    City regions would be developed to an increasing density, which would make them easier to heat using district heating systems, possibly powered by energy recovery from waste.

    Each of the city regions would be connected by rail to at least one other city.

    I hope this actually happens, but if it does, Ireland is going to have to adopt very strict planning controls on rural development to ensure increased density in city regions.
    Among the “big ticket” items recommended in the report are:

    Dublin to Belfast high speed rail link including rail track and trains – €2.5 billion
    Motorway development including expansion of the M1 to four lanes – €5 billion
    Water Mains network linking Shannon and Lough Neagh to Dublin and Belfast – €1.5 billion
    Communications linking the eight city regions €5 billion
    District heating in cities – €1.5 billion
    Public transport in Dublin would cost about €20 billion while there would be large, but unquantified costs for Belfast and Cork and lower costs for Waterford, Sligo and Derry.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,091 ✭✭✭ marmurr1916




  • Registered Users Posts: 2,091 ✭✭✭ marmurr1916


    Some snippets from the main report:

    Page 9 of the full report recommends D4M on the Dublin-Belfast, Dublin-Cork and Dublin-Limerick routes, D3M on Dublin-Galway, Dublin-Waterford and Cork-Limerick-Galway-Sligo routes, with D2M from Sligo to Derry and D2M from Dublin to Derry and from Belfast to Derry.

    Another page says that a motorway link between the port of Foynes in Co. Limerick and the Limerick-Galway route would improve the attractiveness of the port!

    The report also recommends improvements to the Dublin to Belfast railway line to allow for train journeys of 225 km/h (140 mph).

    The top five busiest airports accounted for 97% of all passenger traffic in 2008. Dublin Airport was by far the busiest airport with 62% of all passenger traffic (traffic through Dublin has quadrupled over the past 20 years), followed by Belfast International with 14%, Shannon with 9%, Cork with 9% and Belfast City with 5%.

    Dublin Airport is expected to have 50 million passengers by 2030 (about 2/3rds of the total).

    P45: image of proposed tidal barrier (with road and rail links on top) for Dublin Bay - looks a little like a southern counterpart to Bull Island.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3,010 Tech3


    This report is expecting some substantial increase in population it seems! The Road Needs Study 1998 had a lot of these routes future proofed until 2019 I dont think that AADT will increase that quickly IMO.

    The M1 may in future need D4M in areas closer to Dublin and Belfast but not the entire route.

    The worst bit was the "need" for D3M from Galway to Sligo :D


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 6,093 ✭✭✭ Amtmann


    At first glance this report seems a little bloated and - dare I say it? - self-serving, too.


  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 4,401 Mod ✭✭✭✭ spacetweek


    Some snippets from the main report:

    Page 9 of the full report recommends D4M on the Dublin-Belfast, Dublin-Cork and Dublin-Limerick routes, D3M on Dublin-Galway, Dublin-Waterford and Cork-Limerick-Galway-Sligo routes, with D2M from Sligo to Derry and D2M from Dublin to Derry and from Belfast to Derry.

    Another page says that a motorway link between the port of Foynes in Co. Limerick and the Limerick-Galway route would improve the attractiveness of the port!

    The report also recommends improvements to the Dublin to Belfast railway line to allow for train journeys of 225 km/h (140 mph).
    The roads in that are laughably overspecced! Do they think we're going to have American levels of car ownership and use? With cities of multiple millions.

    Looking at the USA, in California the L.A. and San Fran conurbations are both a total of around 15 million people. They're linked by 3 highways, the 6-lane I-5, the 4-lane Highway 99 and the 4-lane Highway 101 (mainly a dualler). With much higher levels of traffic over there compared to here, how is D4M for Dublin-Cork and D3M for Waterford possibly justifiable??

    Here's what I'd feel necessary over the next 20 years. I'm not considering new roads, just the widening needed on existing ones:

    DUBLIN-BELFAST:

    M1/M50 jct-Balbriggan: 8 lanes
    Balbriggan-Dundalk: 6 lanes
    Dundalk-north of Newry: As-is (i.e., 4 lanes), but redesignate motorway
    Newry-Hillsborough: Offline new-build 6-lane motorway
    Hillsborough-M1/A1 jct: Offline new-build 8-lane motorway
    M1/A1 jct-Westlink: 6-laning (already planned for 2020)
    M1/A1 jct-M2 northwest of Belfast: 4-lane Motorway Belfast bypass

    Of the above, 6-laning of M1/M50-Balbriggan is likely before 2020 anyway.
    The 8-laning could then take place as auxiliary lanes between junctions a la M50. The entire widening from Dublin to Dundalk could therefore take place within the existing reservation.
    The widening from M1/A1 to Belfast to 6 lanes is, according to Wesley Johnston, planned for 2020 anyway.

    So, then, the two hardest parts here are the bits in NI: an offline A1(M) would be a nightmare to build, and would render the current upgrades taking place on the A1 redundant. And the Belfast Bypass isn't even being considered.

    DUBLIN-GALWAY/LIMERICK/CORK:
    Galway-M6/M17/M18 junction: 6-laning.
    Naas-Portlaoise: 6-laning. Naas-Newbridge already planned.
    Limerick-Birdhill: 6-laning.
    Cork Northern Ring-north of Fermoy: 6-laning.

    No other roads will ever need widening, for as long as cars exist anyway :)


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 45 ✭✭✭ Steel Pump


    In 2030 the earths population will stand at 5 billion falling further to 4 billion by 2035 where it will bottom out and no significant increase till 2050.


    whether this will affect the population trend localized on our island is yet to be seen, but I doubt enough lanes on our motorways will be the biggest of our problems.


    The population bubble WILL burst, unless its controlled which wont happen.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 6,093 ✭✭✭ Amtmann


    Steel Pump wrote: »
    In 2030 the earths population will stand at 5 billion falling further to 4 billion by 2035 where it will bottom out and no significant increase till 2050.

    I thought the trend, globally, was inexorably upward?


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 45 ✭✭✭ Steel Pump


    Furet wrote: »
    I thought the trend, globally, was inexorably upward?


    Just opinion, once the unsustainable population peak is hit, famine and war I presume will be cause of the drop.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,404 Pittens


    Just opinion, once the unsustainable population peak is hit, famine and war I presume will be cause of the drop.

    rubbish, also off-topic.

    I dont believe that Ireland's population will be 8 million in 2030, what are they extrapolating from?


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,236 ✭✭✭ Dr. Kenneth Noisewater


    Pittens wrote: »
    I dont believe that Ireland's population will be 8 million in 2030, what are they extrapolating from?

    I believe its based on recent immigration trends (which any dumbass knows are more or less wiped out now), and the highest birth rate in the country since 1897. Can't see it myself either to be honest


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 25,234 ✭✭✭✭ Sponge Bob


    I do not believe the population will be that high in 2030 and even if it were the infrastructure is rolls royce.
    Table 3.1 Traffic Density on Main Inter-urban
    Routes – Vehicles per Day
    Lowest Highest
    Dublin–Belfast 19,000 51,820
    Dublin–Cork 14,900 56,000
    Belfast–Derry/Londonderry 13,600 25,500
    Cork–Limerick 13,100 27,000
    Dublin–Limerick 12,000 32,000
    Dublin–Galway 11,700 18,000
    Limerick–Galway 10,500 26,500
    Galway–Sligo 14,500 24,100
    Dublin–Derry/Londonderry 10,100 12,900
    Dublin–Waterford 6,900 17,800
    Sligo–Derry/Londonderry 7,000 10,200

    A 3 Lane Motorway from Galway to Sligo :eek:
    Table 3.2 Motorway Standard
    4-Lane Motorway Dublin–Belfast9
    Dublin–Cork
    Dublin–Limerick
    3-Lane Motorway Dublin–Galway
    Dublin–Waterford
    Cork –Limerick
    Limerick–Galway
    Galway–Sligo
    2-Lane Motorway Dublin–Derry/Londonderry
    Sligo–Derry/Londonderry
    Belfast–Derry/Londonderry
    Table 3.3 Traffic Volumes
    2007 2030
    Hillsborough 39,500 52,500
    Loughbrickland 19,060 25,000
    Newry Bypass 26,190 35,000
    Drumleck 28,790 54,000
    Dunleer Bypass 31,310 58,000
    Balbriggan 51,820 96,000


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,278 ✭✭✭ dubhthach


    You also have to remember that they are talking about an "all-island" population. It was estimated there that the island population had hit about 6million before the bust -- 4.3 million in republic and 1.7million in the north.

    As for growing another 2million in 20years, well if you look back to 1991 the island population was around 5million, so there's been an increase of 1million in the last 20 years (north and south), don't see why it would suddenly increase by 2million over the next 20. If they were to say 8million by 2050 they might have been closer to the mark.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 25,234 ✭✭✭✭ Sponge Bob


    The document has chapters on other aspects of infrastructure too and some of the assumptions and assertions are largely correct even if the population is smaller.

    http://www.intertradeireland.com/userfiles/file/IAE%20final%20Report_14Feb2010.pdf

    The roads chapter is a bit loony though and that lets the rest of it down overall. And that is apart from the deliberate winding up of the green party :D

    2+2 with short stretches of D2M for 5 miles here and there will suffice for the next 50 years on all the Main roads in the west north of Galway bar Coolooney-Grange in Sligo and Derry- Strabane and even then the D2M is largely only there to give wide loads somewhere to lay over out of everybodys way.


  • Registered Users Posts: 488 ✭✭ fresca


    Furet wrote: »
    At first glance this report seems a little bloated and - dare I say it? - self-serving, too.

    Exactly!!!
    And the government will use reports like this to "justify" why infrastructure projects on the east coast should have precedence over infrastructure projects on the west coast or midlands.
    Because that is the easy option.

    The difficult option is to recognise that the east coast is heading for over population (do we really effectively want 1 urban sprawl from wexford to belfast? - no thanks!) and INTRODUCE REAL SPATIAL STRATEGIES that deliver real growth to main cities (ex dublin) and towns (listed above).


  • Registered Users Posts: 116 ✭✭ Son of Stupido


    8 million?


    I suppose Cork is the place where all the Viagra is made.....


    :D:D:D


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,464 ✭✭✭ munchkin_utd


    8 million?

    I suppose Cork is the place where all the Viagra is made.....

    :D:D:D
    nah,
    this was/ is the genious plan that Ireland will import people from all over the world in mass quantities, to double the population and make everyone rich and happy.

    Well.....
    It was a plan in so much as the Irish government ever has one.

    sure at one stage Ireland was the only country in the world with no immigration requirements!
    Somehow, the government thought that allowing anyone to settle in Ireland, no matter how unskilled, uneducated (or criminal) they may be, would be Irelands ticket to prosperity.

    Maybe the figures stem from this time of unprecedented (uncontrolled and unplanned) population growth?


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,468 BluntGuy


    I agree with their point on densifying the cities. Dublin has suffered under DCC/ABP's ridiculous irrational fear of anything over 6 stories, and as a result, the city is now littered with useless mid-rise glass office blocks.

    Their new high rise policy is too little too late, the damage has been done for the medium-term. :(


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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,091 ✭✭✭ marmurr1916


    The report's suggestions for road improvements are a tad over-ambitious but remember that this report was produced by engineers!

    The population projections are for an all-island population but probably won't be achieved by 2030if the economy doesn't improve.

    BTW, global population is expected to peak at 9 billion!


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 45 ✭✭✭ Steel Pump


    The report's suggestions for road improvements are a tad over-ambitious but remember that this report was produced by engineers!

    The population projections are for an all-island population but probably won't be achieved by 2030if the economy doesn't improve.

    BTW, global population is expected to peak at 9 billion!


    There is a quiet religious campaign for population increase within the respective groups (Christian and Muslim mostly ). Its quite sad really, doing it just to increase their 'troops' and have more power. it'll all go tits up anyway


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,278 ✭✭✭ dubhthach


    nah,
    this was/ is the genious plan that Ireland will import people from all over the world in mass quantities, to double the population and make everyone rich and happy.

    Double the population? The report is talking about the all-island population been 8 million. It's currently 6million (though with census coming up we'll know exactly). that's an increase of 2 million (25%) over 20years.

    From 1991 to today the all-island population increased from 5million to 6 million (20%) and that was with a booming economy for big chunk of that time.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,404 Pittens


    And for 20 years before that it fell, despite a higher birth rate.

    So we cant tell. My guess is that the entire Island will be nowhere near 8 million in 20 years.

    Put it this way, were we extrapolating in 1991 until now - based on the previous years, and decades migration patterns prior to 1991 - we would have been estimating a population of about 4-5 million on the Island now, not 6.


  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 4,401 Mod ✭✭✭✭ spacetweek


    Pittens wrote: »
    And for 20 years before that it fell, despite a higher birth rate.
    No, it didn't. From the 1840s-1960s it fell, but it's been increasing ever since.
    BluntGuy wrote: »
    I agree with their point on densifying the cities. Dublin has suffered under DCC/ABP's ridiculous irrational fear of anything over 6 stories, and as a result, the city is now littered with useless mid-rise glass office blocks.
    Uh... whut? If all of those were 20 storey buildings, we'd have even more empty office space?
    sure at one stage Ireland was the only country in the world with no immigration requirements!
    Somehow, the government thought that allowing anyone to settle in Ireland, no matter how unskilled, uneducated (or criminal) they may be, would be Irelands ticket to prosperity.
    That is complete and utter bullsh*t.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 20 ✭✭✭ bkbk


    While I don't think the all Ireland population will hit 8 million in 20 years, I wouldn't be surprised if it hit 7 million.

    To those who point to immigrants leaving, firstly it isn't happening as much as you might think (partly due to our generous social welfare).

    But more importantly it ignores the cyclical nature of economics, when the economy starts improving again, what made Ireland attractive to immigrants in the first place will still be there and we will see a second wave of immigrants, perhaps in about 5 to 10 years.

    However I agree that a lot of the engineering in this report seems to be going far overboard.

    I think it does highlight the desperate and urgent need for the M20.

    Also they estimate 5 billion for communication needs. I've previously estimated that you could connect every home (well 95%) in Ireland with a fibre optic connection for 2.5 billion.


  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 4,401 Mod ✭✭✭✭ spacetweek


    bkbk wrote: »
    Also they estimate 5 billion for communication needs. I've previously estimated that you could connect every home (well 95%) in Ireland with a fibre optic connection for 2.5 billion.
    I'll have one of those, please!


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,278 ✭✭✭ dowlingm


    Talk of 140mph is rubbish - as seen on the existing Dublin-Belfast/Dublin-Cork lines your top speed is nowhere near as important as being slowed to the speed of a bike because (a) there's a stopping train in front or (b) the track hasn't been properly maintained.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,468 BluntGuy


    spacetweek wrote: »
    Uh... whut? If all of those were 20 storey buildings, we'd have even more empty office space?

    You'd simply have fewer buildings, of more dense nature, taking up less space and making it easier and more cost-efficient to provide infrastructure. This would likely decrease the amount of empty office space.

    A relatively small high density cluster with medium density surrounding it, would've been far better than the large swathes of medium-low density office blocks we have instead.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 50 ✭✭✭ Riddickcule


    bkbk wrote: »
    While I don't think the all Ireland population will hit 8 million in 20 years, I wouldn't be surprised if it hit 7 million.

    To those who point to immigrants leaving, firstly it isn't happening as much as you might think (partly due to our generous social welfare).

    But more importantly it ignores the cyclical nature of economics, when the economy starts improving again, what made Ireland attractive to immigrants in the first place will still be there and we will see a second wave of immigrants, perhaps in about 5 to 10 years.
    And what country will these immigrants come from? My guess is Croatia and Macedonia. :rolleyes:


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