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Jack Lynch Tunnel Maintenance Closures

  • 20-10-2020 3:12pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 1,819 ✭✭✭ niloc1951


    I see again the JLT is closed for maintenance and all traffic must detour through the city centre. We know that this has caused serious disruption to city centre traffic flows in the past and in all probability will cause problems again at some time in the future.

    In the past, the question has been asked - why is it necessary to close both the northbound and southbound bores simultaneously for this work? but as far as I knew no plausible answer has been provided.

    Having travelled extensively throughout Europe I've come across many tunnels with one side closed and a contraflow in operation in the other keeping the route open. In fact, we need to look no further than the Limerick tunnel on the N18 to see that when maintenance is required it is done one bore at a time with a contraflow system in the other.

    Considering that The Jack Lynch Tunnel is designed and equipped to facilitate a contraflow operation in both of its bores can someone explain why both bores are closed at the same time for maintenance causing inconvenience to drivers and negative impacts to the environment of the city centre.


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,103 ✭✭✭ Chris_5339762


    The lions share of any closures are at night and most of the closures are contraflow. Something like 10pm - 4am. At that time of night - and I've timed it - the trip through town with a good run of the lights is only 5 - 10 minutes longer.


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,883 ✭✭✭✭ whisky_galore


    For a teeny tiny tunnel by European standards it sure has a lot of downtime.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,819 ✭✭✭ niloc1951


    T...................most of the closures are contraflow..................

    Over the years I've never seen a contraflow in place during the three-night maintenance closures.
    The question remains, why is a full closure required for the JLT (which is designed for contraflow) and traffic forced through city streets.


  • Registered Users Posts: 17,244 ✭✭✭✭ namloc1980


    For a teeny tiny tunnel by European standards it sure has a lot of downtime.

    It doesn't really. Any properly maintained tunnel anywhere in the world will have regular maintenance windows.

    The tunnel is closed during maintenance generally from 9/10 pm to 4 am so has minimal impact on traffic. The reason the entire tunnel is closed is probably down to H&S. More paperwork and H&S considerations if you have contraflow running plus they can work on both bores at the same time and reduce the overall downtime of the tunnel. Probably much easier just to close the whole thing if you're doing it at all.


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,642 ✭✭✭✭ coylemj


    namloc1980 wrote: »
    .... More paperwork and H&S considerations if you have contraflow running plus they can work on both bores at the same time and reduce the overall downtime of the tunnel. Probably much easier just to close the whole thing if you're doing it at all.

    +1 it's much more efficient for the maintenance gang to have both bores closed at the same time. Along the tunnel, there are multiple connection points where workers and their equipment can move between the two bores to where they're needed and this allows them to get the work done much faster.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 12,420 ✭✭✭✭ Losty Dublin


    More often than not maintenance for a tunnel means road sweeping or replacing any blown light bulbs. On a regular road or street such tasks are a doddle.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,819 ✭✭✭ niloc1951


    coylemj wrote: »
    +1 it's much more efficient for the maintenance gang to have both bores closed at the same time. Along the tunnel, there are multiple connection points where workers and their equipment can move between the two bores to where they're needed and this allows them to get the work done much faster.


    AFAIK there is only an emergency escape passageway between the bores and I can't speak to whether it is suitable for transferring equipment between the bores.

    As regards the amount of work to be done, that's a defined amount and whether it's done one bore at a time or both bores simultaneously it should add up to the same total man/hours and materials.

    So back to my original question, if N18 route isn't closed and Limerick city isn't subjected to detouring vehicles when the Limerick tunnel is haveing its maintenance done, why doesn't the same apply for the N40 route and Cork City.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,819 ✭✭✭ niloc1951


    namloc1980 wrote: »
    ....................... The reason the entire tunnel is closed is probably down to H&S. ....................

    Well, that reason has been ruled out.
    The JLT currently has the Southbound bore closed and a contraflow operating in the Northbound bore, I believe it's for a four day period, Friday to Tuesday inclusive.


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