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Ireland's old railways to become cycle routes

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  • Registered Users Posts: 4,282 ✭✭✭westtip


    So westtip - that's two of you who use the Greenway! :D Anyway, please tell me that it's not really a line of tarmac on the trackbed as I just had a look at this http://www.mayotoday.ie/2010/05/02/great-western-greenway-newport-mulranny/-4293? I wouldn't object to trackbeds being converted to footpaths but tarmac! This one on the Isle of Man is used by horses, walkers and cyclists and not tarmaced. http://www.visitisleofman.com/activities/events/mountainbiking/railwaylines.xml
    2905460728_a6bc6ed39b.jpg

    Lots more pics of the wonderful Isle of Man here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/tasa_m/2905460728/in/photostream/ and a shameless plug for my latest blog here: http://missingmann.wordpress.com/

    JD I agree about no need for tarmac, I make an admission I am yet to nip across and use this route - most of the sustrans greenways in the Uk are not tarmac - I see the article from the IT has been posted up as well, thanks Sulmac I hadn't seen it yet jsut the letters page - JD the idea is like a rolling stone - gathering momentum.....


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,282 ✭✭✭westtip


    Here is a link to the document its on the Transport.ie web site

    http://www.smartertravel.ie/download/1/FINAL%20NCNScopingStudyAugust2010.pdf

    Maps are at the back of the document if someone more IT savvy than me can load them up - on first glance they have not seen the potential of www.sligomayogreenway.com I will of course point it out to them JD!


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,021 ✭✭✭Sulmac


    westtip wrote: »
    Maps are at the back of the document if someone more IT savvy than me can load them up - on first glance they have not seen the potential of www.sligomayogreenway.com I will of course point it out to them JD!

    My feeble attempt... :o

    In all, the proposed routes look promising and easily built upon. For instance, a route from Carlow to Gorey, or Castlebar to Roscommon.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,132 ✭✭✭Stonewolf


    westtip wrote: »
    JD I agree about no need for tarmac, I make an admission I am yet to nip across and use this route - most of the sustrans greenways in the Uk are not tarmac - I see the article from the IT has been posted up as well, thanks Sulmac I hadn't seen it yet jsut the letters page - JD the idea is like a rolling stone - gathering momentum.....

    The UK has a whole network of different kinds of non-road pathways that we don't really have here though. I personally support the development of non-road infrastructure as I think with our national obsession with land ownership we have a real lack of land and route for public amienity. In addition to cycle ways one of the most interesting things the UK has from an Irish perspective is byways (being roads that are open to vehicular traffic but have been downgraded from tarmac), a possible solution to our proliferation of bothareens, maybe there should be another thread on that ...


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,282 ✭✭✭westtip


    Sulmac wrote: »
    My feeble attempt... :o

    In all, the proposed routes look promising and easily built upon. For instance, a route from Carlow to Gorey, or Castlebar to Roscommon.

    I think the more detailed map offers more potential, mind you it shows how having a national tourist authority does not do any good at local level - the route map they have in for West Sligo is so bloody stupid its beyond belief.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 4,282 ✭✭✭westtip


    Stonewolf wrote: »
    The UK has a whole network of different kinds of non-road pathways that we don't really have here though. I personally support the development of non-road infrastructure as I think with our national obsession with land ownership we have a real lack of land and route for public amienity. In addition to cycle ways one of the most interesting things the UK has from an Irish perspective is byways (being roads that are open to vehicular traffic but have been downgraded from tarmac), a possible solution to our proliferation of bothareens, maybe there should be another thread on that ...

    I'm not sure this initiative coming from the National Roads Authority is the right direction - a lot of talk about cycleways attached to roads - I think the emphasis must be on total separation of cycling/long distance walkways away from roads. Having said that - this document is a massive step in the right direction.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,132 ✭✭✭Stonewolf


    westtip wrote: »
    I'm not sure this initiative coming from the National Roads Authority is the right direction - a lot of talk about cycleways attached to roads - I think the emphasis must be on total separation of cycling/long distance walkways away from roads. Having said that - this document is a massive step in the right direction.

    Depends how it's built, a few signposts would be fairly rubbish but they might build a separated bicycle "carriageway". It'd be a typically Irish shotsightedness to do it that way but given the cost of establishing a route away from the road we may have to put up with it. I think what you're most likely to see is a widening of the hard shoulder in a different colour of tarmac.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,021 ✭✭✭Sulmac


    A good example to follow is that of the Netherlands, who are famous for their bicycle culture. They have a well developed national network of landelijke fietsroutes, over 6,000km long and all numbered and signposted using their own unique signs (examples: 1, 2).

    They should also develop "rest-stops" along the routes, with picnic areas, toilets (and maybe showers), campsites and boards showing local tourist information. Basically, service areas for cycle routes. :D


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,282 ✭✭✭westtip


    I'm not sure what the status of this document is - they launch these documents as if they ar tablets of stone - I think there is a lot good in it but a lot needs to be examined. The NRA etc should be looking for public submissions on it. I will certainly be writing to them with a lot of points I want to raise.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,282 ✭✭✭westtip


    Good news from Dempseys Department last week, this will bring more tourists to the West next year.

    http://www.noeldempsey.ie/index.php/national/ministers-dempsey-and-cuffe-and-failte-ireland-announce-funding-for-mayo-to-complete-great-western-greenway-route
    Ministers Dempsey and Cuffe and Fáilte Ireland announce funding for Mayo to complete Great Western Greenway route

    Press Release 12 September 2010

    The Minister for Transport, Noel Dempsey TD, together with Minister of State Ciaran Cuffe T.D. and Fáilte Ireland today announced a joint funding package of €3.5m for Mayo Co. Council to complete the “Great Western Greenway” from Westport to Achill, in Co. Mayo.

    The first phase of the Great Western Greenway, an 18km route from Newport to Mulranny, was opened in April 2010. Following the huge success of this first phase a €3.5m funding package has been agreed to complete the Greenway. The initial 18km phase will be extended, from Mulranny to Achill and from Newport to Westport resulting in a 42km route which will loop around scenic Clew Bay, mainly along the line of the old Midland Great Western Railway.

    The Department of Transport and Fáilte Ireland are co-funding the project, which has been developed by Mayo County Council. The project is the result of Mayo County Council and local landowners working together, and in partnership with other state agencies and bodies, both to develop the concept of the walking and cycling Greenway and to ensure its delivery. It is expected that the route will be completed in early 2011.

    The 18km route from Newport to Mulranny, which opened in April 2010 will be extended by 13km from Mulranny to Achill in the west, and by 11km from Newport to Westport in the south. The resulting 42km off road cycle and walking route will be a world class outdoor attraction, and provide an excellent recreational and transport amenity for locals and visitors alike. Thousands of people have already walked or cycled the initial phase of the route since it opened in April.

    Minister Dempsey, who opened the first phase of this route in April, singled out the role of local landowners in ensuring the delivery of this project saying “There are about 160 landowners along this 42km route, and without their generosity and commitment to the idea of a Great Western Greenway, this project would not have seen the light of day.”

    He added, “Having cycled the Newport to Mulranny route myself back in April, I saw just how spectacular the route is, and how popular it with people of all ages. Delivering the full 42km route will mean thousands more people will cycle or walk the route, and that even more local businesses will benefit from it.”

    Minister Cuffe, who has responsibility for sustainable transport, noted “Given the number of visitors to this area each year, the Greenway will help people from all over Ireland to re-engage with cycling. The route will also show what is possible in terms of delivering high quality cycle routes in Ireland, and I hope that it will act as a stepping stone towards delivering a National Cycle Network throughout Ireland.”

    Welcoming the announcement the Cathaoirleach of Mayo Co Council Cllr. Michael Burke said “ This is very welcome news and a very worthwhile investment in the Tourism infrastructure of the county “ County Manager Peter Hynes thanked the Department , Failte Ireland, the landowners and other bodies involved in a project which will help to establish Mayo as a premier walking and cycling destination.

    ENDS



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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 13,549 ✭✭✭✭Judgement Day


    At least it means that the route will be available for rebuilding as a railway once the Burma Road is completed. :D


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,282 ✭✭✭westtip


    At least it means that the route will be available for rebuilding as a railway once the Burma Road is completed. :D

    JD as you well know in the current climate there will not be a single ginger beer shared on a steamer purring up the burma road; but indeed yes you have made a good point - Sustrans apparently in the UK never take ownership of the routes converted to Greenway - they are retained by Railtrack who if they want to at some point in the future re-open a rail line can then do so - the wholesale conversion to greenways of mothballed lines will in the long term work in favour of rail when our cars come to a grinding halt. As they are a way of protecting the alignments and stopping the nicking a bit of land here and there by various adjacent landowners of raila lines who seem to think because the trains have gone away they can stick a conservatory on the old rail line...Of course with no coal to burn and the need for nuclear power the notebook carrying variety of train travellors will be less than happy.

    On yer bike JD on yer bike....:D


  • Registered Users Posts: 521 ✭✭✭Prowetod


    Bit of a gravedig but the front page of the Evening Echo last weekend was about turning the railway from Cork to Bantry to a cycle/walk path.

    I think it would be a great idea. It would be amazing to walk over the Viaduct. Anyone have any information about this?

    The article briefly touched on financing. I think it was saying it would cost 4-5million (excluding land cost).


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,645 ✭✭✭yer man!


    Galway city and county council are trying to get the city - clifden cycleway off the ground at the moment. They are just installing a cable stayed bridge now in Galway to mark the start of it and are currently talking to landowners along the route as far as moycullen (phase 1) but many of them aren't willing to provide the right of way through their land which makes things very difficult. Nui Galway said they'd provide funding for the cycleway though their lands but the rest is up to the gov, unfortunately funding is really tight and its sorta put on hold except for the bridge which is going in this month.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,103 ✭✭✭hi5


    yer man! wrote: »
    are currently talking to landowners along the route as far as moycullen (phase 1) but many of them aren't willing to provide the right of way through their land which makes things very difficult.

    If it was originally a railway line, wouldn't the right of way still exist?


    Was the land even sold at the time or were they just given it?
    It would be interesting to know what the legalities at the time were.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,645 ✭✭✭yer man!


    Tracks were pulled up and sold off and I'm almost certain the land was sold as it runs through a golf course and many houses along it's route.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 13,549 ✭✭✭✭Judgement Day


    Well I'm not in the least surprised at the attitude of landowners, I was interested in buying the old station at Ballynahinch many years ago and I wouldn't have welcomed Uncle Tom Cobley and all parading through my garden.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 2,913 ✭✭✭galwaycyclist


    Well I'm not in the least surprised at the attitude of landowners, I was interested in buying the old station at Ballynahinch many years ago and I wouldn't have welcomed Uncle Tom Cobley and all parading through my garden.

    The thought occurs that if you converted it into the "Old Victorian Tea Rooms", and had a captive market of hundreds if not thousands of well-heeled European cycling tourists passing your door every day, you would not be complaining at all.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,000 ✭✭✭Cionád


    The thought occurs that if you converted it into the "Old Victorian Tea Rooms", and had a captive market of hundreds if not thousands of well-heeled European cycling tourists passing your door every day, you would not be complaining at all.

    +1

    The Greenway in Mayo seems to have worked wonders, I think only 1 landowner refused right of way (the section just out side Newport that still uses the N59 afaik)

    http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/travel/2012/0218/1224311879321.html


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 13,549 ✭✭✭✭Judgement Day


    The thought occurs that if you converted it into the "Old Victorian Tea Rooms", and had a captive market of hundreds if not thousands of well-heeled European cycling tourists passing your door every day, you would not be complaining at all.

    You could well be right. Anyway, the twenty thousand pounds price tag put me off. :D

    Castletown%2B002.JPG


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  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 66,540 Mod ✭✭✭✭L1011


    If that's the station I think it is, its in extremely good condition these days so whoever bought it has been caring for it.


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,383 ✭✭✭✭Alun


    Cionád wrote: »
    +1

    The Greenway in Mayo seems to have worked wonders, I think only 1 landowner refused right of way (the section just out side Newport that still uses the N59 afaik)

    http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/travel/2012/0218/1224311879321.html
    From memory (I did Achill - Newport back in February), there's at least one place between Newport and Mulranny where right of way was refused, and has a rather awkward (steep uphill!) detour, plus one or two where the old alignment was either built on, or runs very close to properties where less problematic detours are in place. The section between Mulranny and Achill Sound is better with the exception of one short road section, again where the old alignment was built on IIRC.


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


    Expect a number of announcements and possibly even a tender investigating a large number of Greenway projects in North Connacht this year. The network will include the Tuam to Coolooney railway as I understand.

    Elsewhere the Provisional West on Track is now posting on Boards where teh Official West on Track has gone quiet.

    See here.

    http://www.boards.ie/vbulletin/showpost.php?p=77447578&postcount=2332
    Hello All,

    I am a member of the Tuam Greenway Project which was set up in early January 2012 with the objective of bringing a beautiful Greenway to this area for families, walkers, joggers & cyclists alike to enjoy.
    We have both seen and are very impressed with the beautiful Greenways in County Mayo and we have also heard about the great work that is currently taking place on the Greenways between Limerick & Tralee. These projects are a joy to behold.

    We have made it clear from day one that we are absolutely no threat to WOT's efforts to re-stablish the Western Rail Corridor. If the WOT are successful in re-opening the Western Rail Corridor (Northbound from Tuam), we are prepared to walk away from the Greenway. It is fair to say that this will not happen in the short/medium term owing to the current difficult economic climate.

    We would appreciate any advice, help or support from Boardsies that share a passion for walking, jogging,cycling and indeed family life.

    Below is a link to our Facebook Group:
    http://www.facebook.com/groups/213079802087801/[/url]


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,645 ✭✭✭yer man!


    Cable stayed bridge was being lifted into place today in sections. First section went in and whole bridge is expected to be completed by the end of the month.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 13,549 ✭✭✭✭Judgement Day


    yer man! wrote: »
    Cable stayed bridge was being lifted into place today in sections. First section went in and whole bridge is expected to be completed by the end of the month.

    Where? :confused:


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,645 ✭✭✭yer man!


    Where? :confused:
    Connecting fisheries field to NUIG, it marks the start of what will eventually be the Galway-Clifden cycleway.


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