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High speed rail Cork - Dublin

  • 14-10-2014 10:35am
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 2,655 ✭✭✭ draiochtanois


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Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,229 ✭✭✭ Deedsie


    What would it cost to build a new high speed rail network, fully elevated like in Spain from Dublin to Cork?

    Belfast - Dublin - Cork would be the only way they could really do it surely? And even then it would probably not be viable?


  • Registered Users Posts: 165 ✭✭ richiek83


    Deedsie wrote: »
    Belfast - Dublin - Cork would be the only way they could really do it surely? And even then it would probably not be viable?

    Agree Deedsie. Not likely to be viable. The eventual Electrification of the Dublin - Cork line alone will cost somewhere in the region of €300 - €400 million (2012 prices) not taken into account new rolling stock. A new high speed line with the all the new structures it would take and new stations would likely run to into several billion euros. The cost benefit of such a project would not stack up I'd reckon when other projects with proven benefit to cost ratios are shovel ready and are suspended, Dart Underground been a case in point. I think what the Dublin - Cork line should be aiming for is a two hour journey with possibly 100 to 120mph running. This should also be the case with the Dublin - Belfast line although major improvements would need to be made north of the border and approaching Dublin.

    Electrification of the Dublin - Cork line will be viable and will likely be done in conjunction with replacing the present rolling stock of the line when it reaches its end of life (between 2030 - 2040 :)).


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,655 ✭✭✭ draiochtanois


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  • Registered Users Posts: 18,884 ✭✭✭✭ murphaph


    Several billions I suspect. Another "nice" by product of free for all planning is that there will always be plenty of properties along the preferred route of any new infrastructure like this, making it extra expensive.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,169 ✭✭✭ cgcsb


    A new high speed line like the Madrid-Barcelona, wouldn't be a practical transport solution within Ireland because the distances between stops are going to be much shorter (compared to Spain's vast and sparsely populated interior) meaning that the top speed of the trains may never be reached. In short there's no point designing a line and buying trains for 350km/hr running when you're never going to get above 250km/hr anyway due to stopping pattern. Also in Ireland there'd be much shorter end to end intercity journeys, meaning that the time savings between 250km/hr and 350km/hr would be impractically small in economic terms, over a mere 250km distance.

    With this in mind there is of course massive scope for retrofitting the existing Belfast and Cork lines for high speed(up to 250km/h) running. The first step is electrification (due to happen in the 2020's as far as I'm aware). Ongoing replacement of track and re-aligning where required will be another step.

    Building a brand new high speed line isn't all that practical so you won't get an accurate cost estimate. My best guess: northwards of €10bn for Cork-Dub


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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,655 ✭✭✭ draiochtanois


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  • Registered Users Posts: 78,211 ✭✭✭✭ Victor


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    Fully segregated makes sense. Fully elevated does not. I would do it Cork-Limerick-Dublin-Belfast. Extra connectivity, with only modest extra cost.

    I would estimate €3-5 billion. However, a lot of it wouldn't make sense. For an hourly service you would only need a total of about 4 trains sets (including a spare), meaning that trains would rarely meet each other en route, meaning a lot of it could be done single track ...

    Another issue, is that at such speeds, legacy / conventional trains probably wouldn't be able to use it (although at one train per hour, who knows?), harming the cost-benefit ratio substantially. This is the beauty of the TGV network and the proposed High Speed 2 in Britain - trains can use the high speed section for a chunk of the journey and then more on to the legacy network near their destination, so relatively small cities can have high-speed services. Admittedly, in this respect, Britain 'benefits' from being much longer than it is wide.

    I concur with other posters, a lower high speed, using substantial amounts of the legacy network would be much more desirable. Potentially, 90% or more of Cork-Dublin could be changed to 160km/h speeds (journey time 1.5 hours). Reconstruction or diversion would be needed on other sections, like Cork-Mallow, certain bridges and The Curragh. Current thoughts are ~160km/h speeds, electrification and 4 tracks from Dublin to either Newbridge or Kildare and three tracks from Kildare to Cherryville Junction, where the Waterford line branches off.

    With Dublin-Belfast, 160km/h would mean a 1 hour journey time, but extra track or extra lines would be needed Drogheda-Dublin and Portadown-Belfast. A new line Balbriggan-Dublin Airport-Dublin has a certain attraction to it - extra connectivity, little disruption to existing services and a removal of the current timetabling restrictions.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,781 ✭✭✭ Carawaystick


    LGV Est phase 2 cost 2billion for 106km, ex VAT
    http://www.railwaygazette.com/news/single-view/view/lgv-est-phase-2-tendering-gets-underway.html

    It takes a tgv 6 mins, not 2-3, to get to 290kmh
    http://discuss.amtraktrains.com/index.php?/topic/43658-hsr-acceleration-rate/

    I presume you would want to tunnel under Dublin, to serve the city centre, and this would cost another 2 billion or so.
    So just over 400km track gives 8 billion. Tunnelling under Cork and Dublin, is another 2 billion, so 10billion.

    It should be noted, there is no train which will get you to Cork from Dublin before 9:35, so I doubt there is much demand for early morning travel, as surely IÉ would run a train to get people to Cork for the start of the business day if there was.
    First train from Dublin to Belfast gets in at 9:45
    First train from Belfast to Dublin arrives at 9:04

    There is no demand for hs rail in Ireland, the pop is too small and the distances are too short. If there was to be a way to recoup the 10 billion, then you'ld have the coach and train services mopping up customers priced out of a new private hs rail system.

    You might as well look at building that other white elephant, a tunnel to britain.... no-one's fed that thread in a good while


  • Registered Users Posts: 368 ✭✭ Empire o de Sun


    Should they make provision to preserve a future corridor?
    I might not be needed now, but in 30 years maybe.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,169 ✭✭✭ cgcsb


    Having a non stop service between the cities isn't best practice internationally because you miss opportunities to pick up other catchments. Limerick junction for example. A retrofitted cork Dublin line with 250km/h running may deliver journey times of about 70 mins. A brand new line with 350km/h running could only hope to deliver 50 min journey times, with a substantially larger price tag.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,235 ✭✭✭ D.L.R.


    Where in Dublin would this High Speed line terminate? If it goes to Belfast, would it need two Dublin terminals? Would it serve the airport? Etc..


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,394 Sheldons Brain


    LGV Est phase 2 cost 2billion for 106km, ex VAT
    It should be noted, there is no train which will get you to Cork from Dublin before 9:35, so I doubt there is much demand for early morning travel, as surely IÉ would run a train to get people to Cork for the start of the business day if there was.
    First train from Dublin to Belfast gets in at 9:45
    First train from Belfast to Dublin arrives at 9:04

    Are we really sure that IÉ are covering the demand? I certainly know people who would have used such a service. The lack of earlier trains Dublin-Belfast might well have something to do with congestion on the route from local commuter trains.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,781 ✭✭✭ Carawaystick


    Are we really sure that IÉ are covering the demand? I certainly know people who would have used such a service. The lack of earlier trains Dublin-Belfast might well have something to do with congestion on the route from local commuter trains.

    If there was a trainful of people from the 6 counties who wanted to get to Dublin early, then I'd say IÉ would bump a train from Dundalk or Drogheda.
    But I doubt there's the demand.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 3,188 ✭✭✭ DoYouEvenLift


    Would probably be more likely to see the introduction of teleportation. Ireland's too small for there to be a demand high enough to make that worthwhile. We'd all like it though.

    I think a better investment would be a high speed train linking to England like the one from France. It'd have to link up to London though because that'd be the most visited spot for tourists and once they're there they'd be more likely to decide to hop on a train to also visit Ireland. With this we'd have a physical link to the rest of Europe and inter-railers. It'd probably be cool to visit Ireland through that since it'd basically be seen as the last stop on the map for high speed trains. But even this is beaten by flying I'd say?


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,169 ✭✭✭ cgcsb


    The notion that demand isn't there is a bit silly really, the dublin-cork railway line has only captured circa 40% of the demand for overall trips between Cork and Dublin, there is still another 60% taken by the roads, plenty of scope for grabbing more of the market share.

    Additionally, the Belfast-Dublin railway only grabs about 25% of journeys between the cities, again plenty of scope for grabbing more of the market. That market can be grabbed by a radical improvement of journey times. A 2 hour journey to cork for €15 with free wifi would do some damage to the private car share of the market.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 3,188 ✭✭✭ DoYouEvenLift


    cgcsb wrote: »
    The notion that demand isn't there is a bit silly really, the dublin-cork railway line has only captured circa 40% of the demand for overall trips between Cork and Dublin, there is still another 60% taken by the roads, plenty of scope for grabbing more of the market share.

    Additionally, the Belfast-Dublin railway only grabs about 25% of journeys between the cities, again plenty of scope for grabbing more of the market. That market can be grabbed by a radical improvement of journey times. A 2 hour journey to cork for €15 with free wifi would do some damage to the private car share of the market.


    If that's towards my post then pay attention to my wording. The demand is of course there. There would be demand for a line like this from any county directly to Dublin. The only thing that matters is if the demand would be high enough that the line would be used enough/receive enough customers to pay for the billions it would cost to construct.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,655 ✭✭✭ draiochtanois


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  • Registered Users Posts: 8,781 ✭✭✭ Carawaystick


    cgcsb wrote: »
    The notion that demand isn't there is a bit silly really, the dublin-cork railway line has only captured circa 40% of the demand for overall trips between Cork and Dublin, there is still another 60% taken by the roads, plenty of scope for grabbing more of the market share.

    Additionally, the Belfast-Dublin railway only grabs about 25% of journeys between the cities, again plenty of scope for grabbing more of the market. That market can be grabbed by a radical improvement of journey times. A 2 hour journey to cork for €15 with free wifi would do some damage to the private car share of the market.

    SO for your fifteen euros you'ld only need 700 million trips to cover the capital costs....
    If each of the 200 thousand residents of cork city travelled 3500 times that would cover it


    Or lets say there was 350 passengers per train, ten trains each way per day, it would only take the bare hundred thousand days, or three centuries in rounder units....


    As for building a station at Dublin airport, why that's a great idea, a journey of an hour to Cork and another hour to Dublin city.....


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,655 ✭✭✭ draiochtanois


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  • Registered Users Posts: 8,169 ✭✭✭ cgcsb


    SO for your fifteen euros you'ld only need 700 million trips to cover the capital costs....
    If each of the 200 thousand residents of cork city travelled 3500 times that would cover it


    Or lets say there was 350 passengers per train, ten trains each way per day, it would only take the bare hundred thousand days, or three centuries in rounder units....

    Two points:

    I never suggested building a €10bn high speed line from scratch. Quite the opposite I'd advocate a gradual retrofit of the existing line to allow for 250k-280k running to ensure a journey time of circa 1hour

    The cost of building/upgrading road/rail infrastructure need not be recouped by ticket sales, it is an investment in a sustainable future, not a private investment requiring a quick dividend.
    As for building a station at Dublin airport, why that's a great idea, a journey of an hour to Cork and another hour to Dublin city.....

    Not sure what you mean here


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  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators Posts: 13,991 Mod ✭✭✭✭ monument


    cgcsb wrote: »
    The cost of building/upgrading road/rail infrastructure need not be recouped by ticket sales, it is an investment in a sustainable future, not a private investment requiring a quick dividend

    Did you not get the memo?

    Rail has to pay for its self. That's the old mantra which is making a comeback.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,229 ✭✭✭ LeinsterDub


    Rail in Ireland is like the League of Ireland in soccer . If we only improved the quality of the soccer more people would come , they did and no one came . if we only improved the stadiums people would come , they did and no one came.

    The fact is improving journey times isn't going to help. even if they can do Cork to Dublin in 70 minutes unless you live at the train station it's going to be about 2 hours journey and then you end up in Dublin or Cork with no car and the hinterland is inaccessible by public transport and it's cost about the same as driving.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,880 ✭✭✭ kooga


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    my other half commutes weekly from cork to belfast by train and the best commute time is just under 6 hours.


  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators Posts: 13,991 Mod ✭✭✭✭ monument


    Rail in Ireland is like the League of Ireland in soccer . If we only improved the quality of the soccer more people would come , they did and no one came . if we only improved the stadiums people would come , they did and no one came.

    There's many problems with your analogy.

    The real stadiums of rail are the tracks and trains combined. The newer trains on the Cork-Dublin route were not much of improvements -- in ride qualty they were reported to be poorer and they had little in the way of other improvements (no power plugs, no speed improvements).

    The track upgrades have in a lot of cases just about fulfilled safety requirements and we know there have been safety issues with bridges and also issues with laying new tracks on unsuitable ground.

    The Dart Underground works -- which would ease a commuter/intercity bottleneck and massively improve intercity connectivity with the city centre and the Greater Dublin Area -- is still on hold.

    The above improvements and plans were after years of underinvestment where -- if passengers were lucky-- safety was about the only think which was looked after. In the meanwhile the road network was improved on and then in the boom the motorway network was given massive investment -- and improvements are ongoing.

    So when it comes to rail I'm not sure how you can claim that "build it and they will come" idea has failed.

    The fact is improving journey times isn't going to help. even if they can do Cork to Dublin in 70 minutes unless you live at the train station it's going to be about 2 hours journey and then you end up in Dublin or Cork with no car and the hinterland is inaccessible by public transport and it's cost about the same as driving.

    Improving rail speeds will make the total trip time shorter and thus make rail more attractive to more people and likely extend the catchment areas of stations.

    I'm not sure what you think the hinterland is but most people traveling by rail from city to city across the world are not traveling to the hinterland. But it's also the case that nobody is saying that rail suits or is the best option for every trip -- this is normal across the world.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,169 ✭✭✭ cgcsb


    Rail in Ireland is like the League of Ireland in soccer . If we only improved the quality of the soccer more people would come , they did and no one came . if we only improved the stadiums people would come , they did and no one came.

    The fact is improving journey times isn't going to help. even if they can do Cork to Dublin in 70 minutes unless you live at the train station it's going to be about 2 hours journey and then you end up in Dublin or Cork with no car and the hinterland is inaccessible by public transport and it's cost about the same as driving.

    A wholly incorrect comparison. Journey times between the cities by rail have remained static since about the 1970s because there has been no meaningful investment in improving them.

    Also it has been shown that where the journey by rail is compatitive with road (i.e. Cork-Dublin) that a greater % of the journey between those cities is captured by rail. More than 40% of people travelling between Dublin and Cork choose rail compared to circa 25% for Galway and Belfast journeys, which are uncompetitive in journey time.

    Re: onward connections Cork's suburbs are hardly 'inaccessible' by public transport. Also you are incorrect on cost. Dublin-Cork €15 each way plus cork city bus journey €1.90 each way. That's about €33.80 round trip, which is impossible by car regardless of how efficient your engine is.


  • Registered Users Posts: 17,516 ✭✭✭✭ Idbatterim


    the fact that you have to get to Heuston station to take the Cork train, instead of city centre, immediately makes it less attractive than bus, unless you happen to live closer to Heuston station...

    MN and DU are far bigger priorities...


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,169 ✭✭✭ cgcsb


    Idbatterim wrote: »
    the fact that you have to get to Heuston station to take the Cork train, instead of city centre, immediately makes it less attractive than bus, unless you happen to live closer to Heuston station...

    MN and DU are far bigger priorities...

    The bus takes three hours, and is subject to traffic at Both ends of the journey where as the train takes 2:30 and is by all accounts a more comfortable journey


  • Registered Users Posts: 17,516 ✭✭✭✭ Idbatterim


    The bus takes three hours, and is subject to traffic at Both ends of the journey where as the train takes 2:30 and is by all accounts a more comfortable journey
    I agree that train would be more comfortable, but I live in Dundrum and personally wouldnt take the train to cork as Id have to get into town and then get up to Heuston, too much messing around IMO...


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,394 Sheldons Brain


    Idbatterim wrote: »
    I agree that train would be more comfortable, but I live in Dundrum and personally wouldnt take the train to cork as Id have to get into town and then get up to Heuston, too much messing around IMO...

    That's the problem, if you set out driving from Dundrum you'd be in Portlaoise before you'd be in a train at Heuston.


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  • Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 20,990 Mod ✭✭✭✭ bk


    High speed train to Cork, Haha!!!

    Ireland is barely suited to having normal standard intercity rail, never mind high speed. Ireland pretty much couldn't be less suited to intercity rail:

    - Really only one large city
    - Small country, relatively short distances between cities
    - Excellent motorway network

    The reality is the population of Cork is barely big enough to justify intercity rail, never mind high speed rail.

    At the moment the journey times are:
    - Car 2h 20mins
    - Train 2h 30mins
    - Bus 3hours

    Though in my experience the bus and train are about the same when you take into account the time it takes to get to and from Hueston. Car is actually significantly faster as it would be door to door.

    If you want to add a quicker option to that, then it would be far cheaper for the government to spend a fraction of the €10 billion it would cost to build hs rail and instead subsidise a Cork to Dublin airplane route, along with a priority security lines at the airport. You would then have a 45 minute journey time option at a fraction of the cost.

    With the remaining €9.5 Billion you could then build actually useful projects like Metro North and Dart Underground and probably even have some left over for an extra Luas line in Dublin and maybe a BRT or two down in Cork. All money far better spent.

    The fact that their is no longer a airline route between Cork and Dublin, clearly shows that their is little appetite for a high speed rail line. Pure fantasy stuff, there is simply no economic justification for it.


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