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Killucan station campaign to reopen


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,582 ✭✭✭AngryLips

    Opening and re-opening stations on existing lines is the simpliest and cheapest way to improve rail transport in this country ...which is why I think the DOT will never do anything about it. I still can't get over the fact that Dunleer station on the Dublin-Belfast line is closed without any initiative to do anything about it.

    Post edited by AngryLips on

  • Registered Users Posts: 168 ✭✭9320

  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 18,829 Mod ✭✭✭✭Sam Russell

    It could open on a trial basis. No extra cost involved.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 12,427 ✭✭✭✭flazio

    I wouldn't reopen it there at its old location. Like with Oranmore, I'd move to a better location.

    Looking at the map, this looks far more convenient for both Kinnegad and Killucan

    Railway Cottage

    While we are in the neighbourhood, I have a semi related question. When the M4 was getting built, was there a plan to build a road from exit 12 off the M4 over to the old N4 at its junction with the Killucan Road. Anybody coming off there will know the road to the left (or straight on if you're coming from the M6) and then over on the old N4 coming out of Kinnegad, if you look at the entrance to the Tircroghan estate there appears to be a straight on that was never completed. 2 Tircroghan

    The overhead suggests the two were meant to be connected so what happened? Land owner didn’t play ball with the CPO?

  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 64,867 Mod ✭✭✭✭L1011

    Stub roads in estates are often the developer thinking there's future land to be done rather than anything more deep than that - but the other evidence here suggests it could be something - that's a very wide and straight farm access off the junction.. There may be some stuff in current or old LAPs/CDPs

  • Registered Users Posts: 12,427 ✭✭✭✭flazio

    Well look here.

    You can clearly see an unfinished road heading towards Tircroghan and the Killucan Road, my guess is, and sorry for my shaky finger, that this was the plan with maybe a roundabout on the old N4.

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,031 ✭✭✭✭LXFlyer

    Opening a station or reopening a closed station has significant costs - they have to meet modern safety and mobility requirements, you can't just use the old platforms, and as above, there's a significant problem in terms of scheduling services with an extra three minutes lost en route.

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  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 18,829 Mod ✭✭✭✭Sam Russell

    1. What would the cost be to open the station? Only one platform would be needed as it is a single tack line.
    2. For one new stop would it affect the schedule that much? Surely they could make up three minutes on their long trip from Sligo to Connolly. It would only be for the trial period to see if those campaigning actually put their bums on the seats of the train.

    Surely, reopening a long closed station should be welcomed by IR as a good news story.

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,031 ✭✭✭✭LXFlyer

    You would be building two platforms as Killucan is at a passing loop already.

    Even if it were beyond the loop, one platform doesn’t come at zero cost. It has to be built to modern safety standards, you’d have to provide a car park and access roads.

    Oranmore Station, a single platform station, cost €4.8 million, including the car park.

    As for your second comment, read my first post carefully. I have pretty much explained it in copious detail. Trains have to pass each other on single track routes at passing loops, each of which are in stations on this route. Extending journey times in one section on a single track railway (and even more on this route due to the number of trains to be passed), would mean trains not arriving at loops at the optimal times to to do that. They are already pretty much at the limit as it is.

    The line badly needs infrastructural improvements as I outlined above to be able to deliver any new stations, which have cost implications as well. You cannot deliver 3 minutes improved journey time without them.

    Post edited by LXFlyer on

  • Registered Users Posts: 12,427 ✭✭✭✭flazio

    I'd love to get in a time machine back to Victorian times and ask the designers of the Midland Great Western railway what were they thinking putting the station there. I imagine even back then Kinnegad would have been a fairly busy thoroughfare and out of the two roads leading out of Killucan towards the canal and their new railway, MGWR built their station on the road going nowhere instead of the halfway house between Kinnegad and Killucan. Hopefully IE don't make the same mistake.

    Post edited by flazio on

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,031 ✭✭✭✭LXFlyer

    Remember that there was also a station at Hill of Down. It would have probably been better suited for Kinnegad.

    Distances between stations, the canal lock, and indeed the ability to purchase land for a station would have dictated where they were located.

    There were different priorities back then.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,446 ✭✭✭veryangryman

    Following the Royal Canal is the only logical reason to put the track (and station) there. I know there's a closer to Kinnegad spot they could have put a station in but maybe they wanted it to be closer to some kind of settlement a la Killucan.

    Generlaly i think theyre built as cheap as possible, avoiding bridging (which you can do if you follow a river/canal path) as much as possible.

  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 18,829 Mod ✭✭✭✭Sam Russell

    I think the Victorian railway companies were constrained by the Victorian land owners who refused to allow them build where they wanted. Consequently they found following canals to be much less contentious, plus easier construction.

    Also, local population densities were quite different to now as many habitations were destroyed and the inhabitants forced off the land to allow cattle production.

  • Registered Users Posts: 168 ✭✭9320

    They weren't built primarily for passengers!

  • Registered Users Posts: 13,788 ✭✭✭✭Zebra3

    Fairly certain I saw somewhere that that owner of Carton House got involved with the company to have the line diverted by his gaff.

    Probably loads of mad reasons for lines going where they did.

  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Motoring & Transport Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 64,867 Mod ✭✭✭✭L1011

    That was the canal he got diverted.

    The railway company then bought the canal and built alongside it for much of the route

  • Registered Users Posts: 12,427 ✭✭✭✭flazio

    Well, whatever the reasons, it's all (nearly literally) ancient history now. The last thing I'll say is that had MGWR built the station on what is now the L1015 instead of the L1007, there's a higher possibility (but no guarantee) it would still be open today. But we'll never know.

    Best thing for campaigners to do now is invite users of Mullingar and Enfield car parks and Kinnegad and Killucan bus stops to fill out an online survey to indicate if Killucan station would be more convenient for them and if they would use it.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 17,031 ✭✭✭✭LXFlyer

    Actually the best thing they can do is to get Westmeath CoCo to prepare a business case for it, which they haven’t done yet.

  • Registered Users Posts: 8,140 ✭✭✭SeanW

    This sounds, at least on the surface, like a good idea. Whenever I was on the Sligo train (admittedly pre-pandemic) I always remembered having to stop at Killucan for a driver swap between "my" train and a train going the other way. Seems like a sensible idea to make use of that waiting time to serve the local community, since trains are so often waiting there anyway. My only concern with the proposal is that it seems to be middle of nowhere, so it would have to be justified either as a Park and Ride with lots of customers from the local region, or on a "build it and they will come" plan, which given how insane Dublin is, developing a commuter town at Killucan crossing might not be the worst idea.

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,031 ✭✭✭✭LXFlyer

    Just to correct you - virtually no trains cross at Killucan any more and there certainly aren’t driver changes there.

    Only the 16:00 Connolly/Sligo and 15 :05 Sligo/Connolly (Daily), and the 18:16 Connolly/Longford and the 16:55 Sligo/Connolly (Monday-Friday) cross at Killucan with one of each passing at line speed.

    As I explained above, the station needs the extra infrastructure elsewhere along the line to be in place beforehand.