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Luas Bridge - Monument To Mcgreedy's Stupidity

  • 18-11-2002 10:37am
    #1
    Closed Accounts Posts: 175 ✭✭ bertiebowl


    I guess all of us by now have seen photos (or even the real deal) of the huge new Dundrum Luas Bridge.

    I live in the locality and can testify that it must've cost a fortune to build because for about 3 months the workers were working 24 hour shifts to get the bridge finished in time.

    Can you imagine the extra labour cost for that?? Triple pay I reckon for working the am shift........and now they won't be using the bridge for AT LEAST TWO YEARS because of budget cutbacks!!!!!

    So they wasted sh*tloads of money racing to finish a bridge they won't need for at least 24 months!!!!!

    So when your granny is lying dying on a hospital trolley in the corridor - you'll know to blame the Fianna Failure/Regressive Democretin' government...........


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Comments

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,120 PH01


    You might better your arguement if you separate out capital and current government expenditure.
    LUAS, and other capital infrastructural expenditure, is worthwhile. The return on these investments will be felt for decades to come.

    It's the huge increase in the current expenditure (public services wage bills ...etc.) which is a total waste of money. If you want a stick to beat them with use this one.

    BTW, Can't wait to see the LUAS trains on Dundrum bridge in 2004


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 5,564 Typedef


    Actually. The land where that bridge used to be was owned by my family.

    Compulsory purchase order. All hail big brother.*
    *not


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,525 JustHalf


    Typedef's a toff!


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,120 PH01


    Originally posted by Typedef
    Actually. The land where that bridge used to be was owned by my family.

    Typedef, with all that money you got for the land you'd think you'd bring us all out for a pint!
    ;)


  • Registered Users Posts: 15,443 ✭✭✭✭ bonkey
    Registered User


    I would have thought that the normal way to do something like this was to put the project out for tender....after which it is essentially the constructor's job to bring the project in on time or face penalties.

    Once the contract was awarded, the government couldnt really turn around and say "well, we dont actually need it in the initial timeframe, so take longer....and, oh...the contract value is dropping by X million as a result as well".

    So while you can argue that the LUAS was an overly ambitious project because it didnt take a stuttering economy into account, the actual building of the bridge is not necessarily a good example to take. Of course, if you argue against the LUAS on these grounds, then you more or less have to accept that the government never had, and never will have the cash to attempt to sort out Dublin's traffic problem.

    There is also the problem that there is a finite number of constuctors available to work on the LUAS project. It may be that if the bridge took another 2 years to finish, that other parts of the LUAS would be pushed back by 2 years because the work-crew were still on the bridge in Dundrum? Its a question of where the critical path lies.

    I'm not for a moment suggesting that it wasnt a disaster...I'm just suggesting that its not just as simple an issue as you're making it out to be.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 747 Biffa Bacon


    The real scandal here is the LUAS itself. It should never have been approved in the first place.

    What advantages does the LUAS have that couldn't be gained by liberalising the public transport market and creating dedicated bus lanes at a fraction of the cost and a fraction of the disruption?

    The only reason the LUAS is going ahead is because some people think it's quaint to have trams back in the city.

    The whole project is testament to the wastefulness of the government, stupidity of the opposition and laziness of the media in this country.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 4,731 DadaKopf


    Yeah, yeah, bertiebowl, I've heard it all before: "the bridge didn't line up", "the bridge is too low" blah blah blah. It's all hooey.

    First of all, the sceduled completion of the bridge is the end of November - this was stated to the public when Seamus Brennan ceremonially declared it open two months ago. So it's no surprise they're still working on it.

    Secondly, as bonkey pointed out, the contracts go out to tender; the contractor has to complete the structure by a certain date or incur a penalty. It's the responsibility of the project manager to complete the construction on time and on budget so it's in the construction company's best interests to get it in on time, whatever time at night they're working at.

    As far as I'm aware, the government shouldn't be paying any more money on that bridge as has already been agreed (at least not significantly - the building process is rarely seamless). I see your point but to my knowledge, it's not really a concern.

    Biffa: yeah, Biffa, we're building the Luas because we want Dublin to look quaint. If you looked at the planned Dublin rail network (here) you'd find that it's part of a wider plan to change Dublin's transport system from a radial system to an integrated system that will link all areas of the city by integrating four types of rail, buses and park-and-ride schemes. Buses will link people to train lines because trains are faster and more efficient than buses.
    What advantages does the LUAS have that couldn't be gained by liberalising the public transport market and creating dedicated bus lanes at a fraction of the cost and a fraction of the disruption?
    Firstly, liberalisation has its disadvantages, particularly in terms of service as unprofitable routes are often cancelled, this places essential services as subordinate to profit and has profound effects on people's lives.

    Secondly, because of this conflict between government and business interests, liberalisation makes it more difficult for the government to legislate to protect public interests and it's often the case, but justifiably so in my opinion, that public transport systems run at a loss. Therefore, the adjustments needed to implement liberalisation of existing routes can cause more damage to businesses and communities than keeping them under state control. This is why the government has decided to open up public transport in Dublin with the proviso that only new routes may be privately run, existing routes will continue to be state controlled.

    The Luas and Metro, their integration with the DART, Arrow etc. and with Dublin bus is essential. It's got nothing to do with quaintness and has everything to do with necessity. Public works cost money. Public transport can't operate to serve this need if it's privately owned.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 8,264 RicardoSmith


    In my experience the "hurry up and wait" technique is pretty common policy in many business areas that are poorly managed. Especially in Ireland. However, its up to the company building it to make a profit, if they make a loss then it should be their problem and penalised if its late. There should be no safety net from the govt.

    Luas isn't the best solution thats for sure, but it was a cheap option compared to some of the alternatives. That said the whole thing is indeed a waste of time. The big problem is too many people in too small a place with no infrastructure and no money to build one.

    Instead of moving people around the place en-masse it would be more effective if you "planned" (without the brown envelopes please) it so that people didn't have to move large distances everyday. This would mean developing town centers and infrastructure, industry in all the towns around Ireland, instead of just in Dubin. Most high tech companies do not need to be near Dublin and they don't need the infrastructure that traditional industries need.

    Some lateral thinking was needed and as usual we fail to find it in our politicans and planning officials.

    Let me see. Build a ring road around dublin, (not too far away though) and then clog it up by building industral estates and shopping centers on almost every exit. I think a 10yr old could have forseen a few problems with that plan.

    Never mind lets build a toy train that only covers half the city and that can't handle the capacity even before its built, and that runs through the very traffic that its mean to be avoiding.

    Hang on a minute DOH!


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 4,731 DadaKopf


    You're absolutely right that Dublin needs to be restructured.
    Instead of moving people around the place en-masse it would be more effective if you "planned" (without the brown envelopes please) it so that people didn't have to move large distances everyday. This would mean developing town centers and infrastructure, industry in all the towns around Ireland, instead of just in Dubin. Most high tech companies do not need to be near Dublin and they don't need the infrastructure that traditional industries need.
    Dublin needs two major planning adjustments: firstly, it needs a fully integrated mass transit system that operates more like a net than radially; secondly, it needs a strong initiative to restore local, sustainable communities surrounding a commercial centre (with patches of expensive and inexpensive residential zones).

    The idea is to organise Dublin so that people can both travel great distances for monetary needs (work) but short distances for social needs (groceries, socialising etc.).

    Cities are interesting places when it comes to the term 'distance'. Usually, in cities, distance is seen more in terms of time than physical distance; therefore, with a fully integrated transit system distance would really cease to be an issue as all places in Dublin would be, relatively, equidistant. This is brilliant when it comes to getting to work on time, transporting goods and services (because there'd be less traffic on the roads) and generally getting around and doing your thing. It's great because it connects people. Ironically, it's terrible for 'social capital' because communities suffer because people don't feel situated in a community.

    And in the suburbs, even if they feel situated in a community (take a suburban housing estate), they don't feel connected to the city or anyone else. Often times, they have to travel long distances (on land, not time) to get their shopping and where do they go but an ugly, grey strip mall puncuated with red and white stripes and a circled green tree. These communities are completely unsutainable. They need to be connected but they also need to be situated and self-sustainable.

    So if the planners are going to succeed in what they're doing, they'll appreciate the fact that it's a two-tiered approach they're looking for. The transport system must facilitate ease and efficiency of transport over long distances but initiatives must be undertaken to rehabilitate Dublin's stricken communities so that they don't have to travel far at all for community needs.

    Sorry about the post being pretty crap.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 8,264 RicardoSmith


    Not everyone needs or wants to be in Dublin. Why can I not get a train to Navan for example? Why if I live in Navan do I have to work in Dublin? Because thats why the jobs are. Why are the jobs there etc... etc...

    This is the same story for practically the whole of Ireland. Look at Plassy park in Limerick. Theres a university and industrial park there. Only for that all of those people would probably be in Dublin adding to the traffic on all forms of transport.

    You don't need to decentralise Dublin, but Ireland....


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  • Registered Users Posts: 13,999 ✭✭✭✭ AlekSmart
    Registered User


    [QUOTE
    you'd find that it's part of a wider plan to change Dublin's transport system from a radial system to an integrated system that will link all areas of the city by integrating four types of rail, buses and park-and-ride schemes. Buses will link people to train lines because trains are faster and more efficient than buses.


    Secondly, because of this conflict between government and business interests, liberalisation makes it more difficult for the government to legislate to protect public interests and it's often the case, but justifiably so in my opinion, that public transport systems run at a loss. Therefore, the adjustments needed to implement liberalisation of existing routes can cause more damage to businesses and communities than keeping them under state control. This is why the government has decided to open up public transport in Dublin with the proviso that only new routes may be privately run, existing routes will continue to be state controlled.

    The Luas and Metro, their integration with the DART, Arrow etc. and with Dublin bus is essential. It's got nothing to do with quaintness and has everything to do with necessity. Public works cost money. Public transport can't operate to serve this need if it's privately owned QUOTE]

    Ahhhh the sting in the tale.....However since Shamey and his "New" boys moved into Kildare St some rather intresting alterations to concept have occurred.
    Firstly,the DTO quietly dropped Park N Ride as a part of it`s masterplan for Dublin Traffic Management nearly a year ago,this Amazing Volte Face took place with almost no media comment and copperfastens the realisation that LUAS will have ZERO efrect on peak time private car usage.
    Odds on is that LUAS may well INCREASE car usage especially by those who presently use Bus services and who will resist the DTO`s notion of Strolling,Pedalling,or Skateboarding to their (Semi) local tram halt.....
    Sekondly !..The original agreed stance of the Dublin Public Transportation Forum as presented to Mary O Rourke in the dying days of her reign was to allow a Bus Atha Cliath a 5 year period of operational stability to upgrade and improve its PRESENT route network with freedom from interference by the Department who presently impose a veto on any alterations to route length and variation etc.
    The multi-facted members of the Forum,many of whom would NOT be among the ranks of Dub Bus supporters,could see the merits of this approach and presented a very fair and balanced appraisal of what could allow for real improvment in our Bus service.
    Seamus B has decided to shelve this report and to proceed apace with a form of Franchising which appears to serve no good purpose...unless one is connected to a private sector operator (?)
    Many would argue that pushing through a contentious and unproven new public transport concept at a time when the City is physically incapable of handling present traffic mix/volume due to major infrastructural works is shortsighted.
    I personally consider it LUNACY,but then Irish Polititians have never been strong on reality or forward thought.
    The breaking news today of Seamus B telling the Dail of the €30
    illion total cost of alleviating the (Private Sector) Taxidrivers hardship cases is a very neat way of cancelling out the €40Million saved by discontinuing the FirstTimeBuyers grant.
    Incidentaly.....By accepting the principle of compensating (Private) Taxidrivers for hardship incurred as a result of Government policy enactment the Minister sems to concur that I as a Bus Atha Cliath Driver will be able to claim similar treatment when government policy results in a similiar worsening of the Wages and Conditions presently attatching to my job...
    It is one thing to have a thrusting and vibrant Minister "Getting things Done",but it is a totally different concept to have a Minister "Doing Things" without reference to the reality of the surrounding universe....:rolleyes:


    Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, and one by one.

    Charles Mackay (1812-1889)



  • Closed Accounts Posts: 747 Biffa Bacon


    Originally posted by DadaKopf
    Buses will link people to train lines because trains are faster and more efficient than buses.
    I assume by trains you mean the LUAS? If so, will they really be that much faster than buses running on dedicated bus lanes? In what other sense are they more "efficient".
    Firstly, liberalisation has its disadvantages, particularly in terms of service as unprofitable routes are often cancelled, this places essential services as subordinate to profit and has profound effects on people's lives.
    So why not just have the state step in and provide bus services on those routes that the market won't provide? Why do all bus routes need to be exclusively publicly controlled?
    Secondly, because of this conflict between government and business interests, liberalisation makes it more difficult for the government to legislate to protect public interests and it's often the case, but justifiably so in my opinion, that public transport systems run at a loss.
    They run at a loss because they're inefficient. And they're inefficient because they have no competition.


  • Registered Users Posts: 15,443 ✭✭✭✭ bonkey
    Registered User


    Originally posted by Biffa Bacon
    They run at a loss because they're inefficient. And they're inefficient because they have no competition.

    No, they run at a loss because they cannot cherry-pick profitable routes, and decide to offer non-existant services outside rush-hour.

    To illustrate this point, I would suggest you find any public service system which runs a profit anywhere in the world. I'd even settle for break even. I'm not aware of any.

    The English rail services, for example, even after privatising, only exist because of massive subsidisation by the govt. They run a profit, because the subsidisation is greater than the loss they would run without it.

    jc


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 4,731 DadaKopf


    I assume by trains you mean the LUAS? If so, will they really be that much faster than buses running on dedicated bus lanes? In what other sense are they more "efficient".
    No, by trains, I'm referring to an integrated rail network comprised of the Luas, the Metro, the DART and suburban rail services. They're more efficient because train routes are more direct than buses and don't have to contend with traffic.
    So why not just have the state step in and provide bus services on those routes that the market won't provide? Why do all bus routes need to be exclusively publicly controlled?
    It's still a possibility and one which I don't entirely object to, but one which I'm very skeptical of. The market being as it is, and companies being capricious by nature, a significantly privatised setup would make the transport system quite unstable because it would be subject to market forces more than proper, adequate planning. I don't think it's a good position for a government body (Dublin City Council, DoT and so on) to have to argue with business over commercial viability when it's supposed to be providing an essential service for all. The fact of the matter is an urban transit system is for the smooth functioning of a city, both as a place where people live and raise children and as a strategic commercial site where people work and earn money. If the Railtrack debacle in the UK is anything to go by, such a situation is to be avoided like the plague, in my opinion.

    The best system Dublin could offer would be this: an integrated rail system linking all major parts of the city (see here) supported by a bus system that serves station-to-station routes in a radial pattern. The rail system would be the backbone of the system while the bus service would support people getting to that backbone. Buses have their place but rail is the best solution and I still think it should be publically funded.

    The Luas itself may not have a major impact on reducing traffic but neither do the buses. Only a successful, integrated system will have that effect. Y'know, concince people there's a different way to use cities.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 8,264 RicardoSmith


    One of the problems with dublin is that lack of capacity of the roads to take any more cars/people. The existing capacity is underutilised and poorly managed by the powers that be. (example 24hr bus lanes when we don't have 24hr buses)

    Putting a luas system though those same streets is fine if the luas can take the capacity of all those cars and buses that it displaces. But it can't.

    I think that a lot of people and industry in general are moving slowly out of dublin and actually out of ireland to places that are less congested. So that in 5-10yrs the congestion will ease, and people will say that its due to the luas.

    Gonna be a nightnare till then.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 747 Biffa Bacon


    Originally posted by bonkey
    No, they run at a loss because they cannot cherry-pick profitable routes, and decide to offer non-existant services outside rush-hour.
    Alright then, they're inefficient because they have no competition and because they cannot cherry-pick profitable routes, and decide to offer non-existant services outside rush-hour. You're not telling me you think CIE run a pretty tight ship are you?


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 747 Biffa Bacon


    Originally posted by DadaKopf
    They're more efficient because train routes are more direct than buses and don't have to contend with traffic.
    The flip side of being more direct is that commuters will generally have further to travel to get to and from a station than to a bus stop. And the only traffic on bus lanes is other buses. Trains are also more vulnerable to delays because of faults on the line than buses, which can always just drive around road blockages.
    It's still a possibility and one which I don't entirely object to, but one which I'm very skeptical of. The market being as it is, and companies being capricious by nature, a significantly privatised setup would make the transport system quite unstable because it would be subject to market forces more than proper, adequate planning.
    More unstable than any other service already provided by the market?
    If the Railtrack debacle in the UK is anything to go by, such a situation is to be avoided like the plague, in my opinion.
    The Railtrack situation is different in my opinion as it involved the privatisation of the actual rail network, which was pretty pointless seeing as how it remained a monopoly. An analogous situation would be if the entire road network was to be privatised, which I don't think anyone is suggesting we do.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 772 Chaos-Engine


    Originally posted by PH01
    You might better your arguement if you separate out capital and current government expenditure.
    LUAS, and other capital infrastructural expenditure, is worthwhile. The return on these investments will be felt for decades to come.

    It's the huge increase in the current expenditure (public services wage bills ...etc.) which is a total waste of money. If you want a stick to beat them with use this one.

    BTW, Can't wait to see the LUAS trains on Dundrum bridge in 2004

    If you actually read the estimates you would have learned that the government doesn't agree with you. Capital Spenting has been cut...

    P.S. Luas will be clogged just like the dart in 2 years max...


  • Registered Users Posts: 15,443 ✭✭✭✭ bonkey
    Registered User


    Originally posted by Biffa Bacon
    You're not telling me you think CIE run a pretty tight ship are you?

    No, Im telling you that regardless of how efficient they become, they will always run a loss.

    Yes, they are inefficient. Yes, they run a loss. No, these two facts are not entirely inter-dependant.

    THey can *reduce* their losses by becoming more efficient, but they will not become profitable. Thats all I was driving at.

    Interestingly, as a semi-state, if they somehow did manage to run a profit, they would probably be forced to reduce their charges.

    jc




  • Originally posted by bonkey
    Interestingly, as a semi-state, if they somehow did manage to run a profit, they would probably be forced to reduce their charges.
    jc
    Indeed in these money hungry times,they might even be sold off if they were profitable.
    Making them more effecient saves money, whether they still make a loss or not, and thats sensible, especially when it's all our own money we are saving.
    mm


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 876 ✭✭✭ Lord Glentoran


    The real scandal here is the LUAS itself. It should never have been approved in the first place.

    What advantages does the LUAS have that couldn't be gained by liberalising the public transport market and creating dedicated bus lanes at a fraction of the cost and a fraction of the disruption?

    The only reason the LUAS is going ahead is because some people think it's quaint to have trams back in the city.

    The whole project is testament to the wastefulness of the government, stupidity of the opposition and laziness of the media in this country.

    Anyone else landing on threads from eighteen years ago on the first page?

    Oh and “quaint” me hole.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,818 ✭✭✭ donvito99
    Registered User


    Yup.

    Quite interesting though, I didn't know it cost €30m to remove the ramp at Connolly to make way for the Luas halt, and now it's barely used as a stop.


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,710 ✭✭✭✭ Zebra3
    Registered User


    The real scandal here is the LUAS itself. It should never have been approved in the first place.

    What advantages does the LUAS have that couldn't be gained by liberalising the public transport market and creating dedicated bus lanes at a fraction of the cost and a fraction of the disruption?

    The only reason the LUAS is going ahead is because some people think it's quaint to have trams back in the city.

    The whole project is testament to the wastefulness of the government, stupidity of the opposition and laziness of the media in this country.

    An absolute beaut.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,573 ✭✭✭ Infini
    Registered User


    Anyone else landing on threads from eighteen years ago on the first page?

    Oh and “quaint” me hole.

    I'm getting that glitch on Mobile where ancient threads are showing in the first page of the forum, have to refresh the page several times to get current posts up.

    Also nice Necro! :eek:


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,890 ✭✭✭✭ whisky_galore
    Registered User


    Zebra3 wrote: »
    An absolute beaut.

    It's quaint to read a mindset not from 18 years ago, but from the 1960s.

    Groovy man.


  • Registered Users Posts: 26,285 ✭✭✭✭ Eric Cartman
    Banned


    "The only reason the LUAS is going ahead is because some people think it's quaint to have trams back in the city" has to be one of the poorest ageing statements on this site.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,818 ✭✭✭ donvito99
    Registered User


    Could Biffa Bacon have been Colm McCarthy I wonder? The "shure busses be grand" sentiment is familiar.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 876 ✭✭✭ Lord Glentoran


    "The only reason the LUAS is going ahead is because some people think it's quaint to have trams back in the city" has to be one of the poorest ageing statements on this site.

    Funny enough somewhere in my cuttings file is an almost exact lift of that quote by a Sunday Business Post journo some time later, during the testing phase of the Green Line. There was an attempt at doing a hatchet job with mad stuff like a disabled person unable to get on and a comment from an unnamed source that it was the roughest ride they ever had on a “train”. Sheer desperate nonsense. Perhaps the SBP being on Harcourt Street at the time and dealing with the construction phase fuelled that nonsense?


  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 15,558 Mod ✭✭✭✭ dfx-
    Moderator


    Great reference thread for those who asked why the lines were not joined up.

    Just getting the two Luas lines as they originally were was a fight, never mind extensions or joining them up, longer platforms or longer carriages.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 13,890 ✭✭✭✭ whisky_galore
    Registered User


    donvito99 wrote: »
    Could Biffa Bacon have been Colm McCarthy I wonder? The "shure busses be grand" sentiment is familiar.

    Can you imagine how Dublin would have been in recent years if pigheaded lunatics like him were listened to and Luas not built?


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