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M11/N11 - M50 (J4) to Coyne's Cross (J14) [options published]

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  • Registered Users Posts: 7,351 ✭✭✭prunudo


    It just feels to me like the usual can kicking and burying of heads in the sand. The problems won't go away by pulling the funding.

    I had always favoured the offline options as it favoured a catch all solution, with scope for freight, cars and public transport. I was disappointed they went for the online upgrade but accepted that the solutions they offered would increase the safety of current users while also diverting a lot of the local journeys away from the national route and onto existing and new link roads.

    Was the perferred option perfect, far from it, but at least it was something. Now they've pulled the funding we'll have nothing accept broken promises and pipe dreams. Until they ring fence billions for the trainline and bus corridors everything else is lip service. Meanwhile the council and aBp grant more and more residential permissions with no plan for infrastructure let alone machines on the ground.



  • Registered Users Posts: 5,895 ✭✭✭Chris_5339762


    Yes but the biggest problem is the Bray to Greystones section of the railway. It desperately needs a more inland route that is double track. And that will be very expensive and likely just as contentious as the road.


    Ideally both would be done - road and rail... but this is Ireland where we often do with neither.



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,568 ✭✭✭KrisW1001


    Railways don’t attract the same kind of environmentally-motivated opposition as roads, and having a railway station near to your house does wonders for Property Value, the basis upon which many planning objections are really brought.



  • Registered Users Posts: 14,901 ✭✭✭✭loyatemu


    they'll never move the railway inland in North Wicklow, apart from the expense of the infrastructure you'd have to demolish swathes of houses in Bray and Greystones to bring it through the towns. New tunnel through Bray Head and extensive coastal defences at the vulnerable sections would probably be cheaper and less contentious

    They could possibly move it inland south of Greystones though by moving it closer to Kilcoole and Newcastle and moving Wicklow station up towards Rathnew. AFAIK though the current plan for there is extra sea defences.

    I'm skeptical of this idea that they'll return to this plan a few years down the road when the pesky Greens are out of govt - is the climate crisis going to have been solved by 2025? Will we go back to the mindset where more roads are considered the answer to congestion? The next govt could contain the SDs who have been complaining about the Greens not being "green" enough.



  • Registered Users Posts: 9,423 ✭✭✭Macy0161


    It hasn't been cancelled, issue is funding this year. There's still a lot that could be done regarding bus travel as well - rail isn't the only the PT option there is. Pre-pandemic, buses were at capacity, even with them being subject to the same traffic as private vehicles.



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  • Registered Users Posts: 7,351 ✭✭✭prunudo


    I understand that, but how much money are we really talking. One of the biggest problems during the last recession was that they pulled the money from the design teams to save pennies. Then when the public finances improved we were left with nothing available and projects having to go back to square one. The only people who win are the consultancy firms.



  • Registered Users Posts: 2,806 ✭✭✭crushproof


    Tell that to the residents of Dublin 6 and Eamon Ryan who vemently opposed the southside aspect of the Metro all because of one level crossing being shut. Regardless the key for the N11 for the time being should be a proper bus priority. Any imrpovements to the railway are decades away, if ever.

    Any infrastructure project in this country is held up for years because of delays, drawn out planning procedures, politics and NIMBYS.



  • Registered Users Posts: 14,901 ✭✭✭✭loyatemu


    Any improvements to the railway are decades away, if ever.

    obviously this is with the caveat "if it happens", but Dart+ will increase frequency to Greystones (probably take 10 years for the infrastructure works though), and the arrival of new battery rolling stock in 3 years or so will possibly free up units to increase frequency further south.



  • Registered Users Posts: 9,423 ✭✭✭Macy0161


    Bus priority is the only medium term solution. Capacity, and them being caught in the same traffic as private cars, has always been the issue.



  • Moderators, Entertainment Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 14,402 Mod ✭✭✭✭marno21


    Public display of the N11/M11 Bus Priority Interim Scheme this week in the Glenview Hotel

    The main M11/N11 scheme is on hold due to "funding constraints" (translation: until the obstructionist is not longer in charge at the Department).



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  • Registered Users Posts: 7,351 ✭✭✭prunudo


    To be honest, it wasn't just ER. As a community we won't get any upgrade to this section of road. Nearly every element of it came up against objections, from various local groups, property owners and politicians sticking their oar in.

    Even after the initial objections to various colour routes, Arup came up with good practical but pragmatic solutions to solving the flow rate on the red route but it went over most people's heads and they resorted to complaining about everything.

    As long as they could join the n11 at the same spot they always have, that was the main thing and screw the fact that its a national route used by thousands of others.

    Post edited by prunudo on


  • Registered Users, Subscribers Posts: 5,974 ✭✭✭hometruths


    I think the delay, along with this fudge of bus lanes, might be a little more strategic and long term than it looks.

    Clearly they want to widen the road in the Glen for the N11 upgrade, but equally clearly they cannot do so thanks to the Habitats Directive, which is very strict with zero tolerance for any potentially adverse impact on a Special Area of Conservation.

    The directive states that if there is an alternative to widening then they must choose that in preference to works in the Glen, and cost is not a factor to rule out an alternative. Obviously an alternative is to reroute the road, hence Habitats Directive says no to widening road in Glen.

    Hence why the preferred option as published, left the Glen section untouched because nobody wants to reroute the road and incur those costs.

    However key to the Habitats Directive is the alternative is to whatever project is being proposed.

    So if you propose widening the road in the Glen a little in order to accommodate bus lanes on an existing road, then obviously there is no alternative because there is no other existing road.

    Hence the road can be widened in Glen for bus lanes and comply with the Habitats Directive.

    Wait a few years and then say, gosh this is a national strategic route, we'd really be better off converting the N11 into three lane motorway, and rerouting the buses. We don't need to worry about the Habitats Directive because we don't need to widen the road, it's already wide enough so just converting the bus lanes that are already there into a different traffic lane will not have any adverse impact on the SAC.

    Job done. It will take a bit longer than intended, but ultimately it is the only way to get around the Habitats Directive.



  • Registered Users Posts: 7,351 ✭✭✭prunudo


    Honestly can't see them ever doing that. Throughout the whole consultation process there was never any mention, either presently or in the future of having 3 lanes of regular traffic. A 3rd lane for buses maybe, but not general traffic.

    The biggest issue with the current road is local traffic using a national route for short duration, joining at one junction and leaving at the next. Hence why the last plan with link roads and minor access closures would have been a great solution once the off route options were shelved.

    But alas there were too many local objections And now we still have a congestion road and commuters using back roads as rat runs and cheating at every junction.



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,568 ✭✭✭KrisW1001


    So if you propose widening the road in the Glen a little in order to accommodate bus lanes on an existing road, then obviously there is no alternative because there is no other existing road.

    Hence the road can be widened in Glen for bus lanes and comply with the Habitats Directive.

    There is an alternative, and it’s even better for the Habitats Directive: reduce the whole road down to 80km/h, set out as one lane general traffic plus one bus lane each way, with an offline N11 bypassing the whole Glen: in other words, do what should have been done back in the 1990s. Unfortunately, there was that most sacred of sites – a golf club – on the best route for such a plan, so instead we end up with this nonsense.

    Here’s the Glen. The hatched area is the Special Area of Conservation, the orange is the area protected by the Habitats Directive.




  • Registered Users Posts: 255 ✭✭AAAAAAAAA


    A concept that is becoming more and more common in Denmark is to roof over motorways to reduce noise in Urban areas. I wonder if that concept can be combined with wildlife crossing bridges and green roofs for this site, at the very least reconnecting the two sides of the habitat.



  • Registered Users, Subscribers Posts: 5,974 ✭✭✭hometruths


    I think the problem in the Glen is it is the trees that are protected specifically rather than the wildlife. So no matter how wildlife and environmentally friendly the plan may be, if the plan necessitates cutting down trees it's a non starter because of the Habitats Directive.



  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 5,044 Mod ✭✭✭✭spacetweek


    Let me summarise.

    Traffic engineers who do this for a living came up with ideas to improve the road but local people "didn't like these ideas" so now they won't be built. What do local people know about traffic engineering? So a middle-aged couple in Delgany can overrule experts who have years of experience in these things?

    If ever there was an argument for not having public consultation, it's here. Sometimes locals complain about consultation just being a "box-ticking exercise" but sometimes you kind of need to ignore the locals as many of them are ignorant. Through no fault of their own, but ignorant nonetheless.



  • Registered Users Posts: 7,351 ✭✭✭prunudo


    Thats exactly what happened, and when the first group got their way, the engineers went back, drew up revised plans and then a new group appeared and they weren't happy, rinse and repeat.

    Not just here but there are important projects up and down the country that are badly needed but are taking far to long to get through not even planning but through the consultation periods.

    I wouldn't say they're ignorant, probably more selfish, they don't want change and want to contuine living and doing as they've always done without realising some infrastructure is more important than local issues.



  • Registered Users Posts: 14,901 ✭✭✭✭loyatemu


    Bypassing the Glen on either side is hugely problematic and widening through the Glen is probably impossible due the environmental restrictions. The only practical option is a tunnel but that's impossible to justify on cost grounds. The existing proposal of tidying up the mainline and building some distributor roads is the only likely outcome if funding is made available in the future.

    I'll be interested to see what the bus priority proposals consist of - the recent announcement made it look like they were planning to build P&R but do nothing about priority which would obviously be pointless (who's going to park, wait and then sit in a bus when they could sit in the same traffic in their car).



  • Registered Users Posts: 13,917 ✭✭✭✭josip


    Could they do a twin cut and cover tunnel through the existing route? The tunnel traffic could be for mainline traffic through the Glen and the existing road network relaid over it for all the local distributor roads. Similar to the underpasses in Paris/Munich on the internal ring roads, but on a bigger scale. Traffic through the Glen would be reduced to single lane for a couple of years of pain while it's being done. But it would avoid the NIMBY and ECO vetoes.



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  • Registered Users Posts: 14,901 ✭✭✭✭loyatemu


    that seems like it would still be very disruptive to the Glen ecosystem. It wasn't listed in the recent route options whereas a tunnel was, that tells you it's something they don't consider feasible.



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,568 ✭✭✭KrisW1001


    The problems of bypassing the Glen to the west are geological; the ones to the east are primarily commercial and political.



  • Registered Users Posts: 6,860 ✭✭✭Pete_Cavan


    People need to forget about bypassing GotD and trying to think of whacky solutions to allow for it, it just isn't going to happen for multiple reasons.

    The solutions for the N11 have already been identified; modal shift to buses with much increased bus priority, and removal of local traffic onto alternative routes. These things may have to be pushed as smaller individual projects where each can be presented in such a way so as to placate local objectors and keep off the radar of the general rent-a-crowd naysayers but they will have to happen.



  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 5,044 Mod ✭✭✭✭spacetweek


    Also extension of DART to Wicklow town would help. With double tracking of the rail line.



  • Registered Users Posts: 5,895 ✭✭✭Chris_5339762


    Much as I am a roads nerd, if there is a tunnel built anywhere near here it simply must be a replacement for the current railway tunnel. Sadly thesedays a large, expensive, commuter tunnel simply won't wash when there is a dual carriageway already there.



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,181 ✭✭✭p_haugh


    May not be able to get full electrification anytime soon to Wicklow town, but hopefully the addition of BEMUs will facilitate some extra services like this



  • Registered Users Posts: 6,860 ✭✭✭Pete_Cavan


    The N11/M11 Bus Priority Interim Scheme Preferred Option has been published.

    It is split into three sub-schemes;

    Sub-scheme A, bus lanes in hard shoulder north and southbound from Loughlinstown Roundabout to J6

    Sub-scheme B, J6 to J8 nothing

    Sub-scheme C, bus lanes in hard shoulder northbound only, active travel route on the opposite side of the road

    They have made proposals for closing some access points south of Kilmac.



  • Registered Users Posts: 2,976 ✭✭✭Plastik


    Interesting proposal. Only part of it of real interest to me is to see how they will cater for cyclists/pedestrians on the route. The rest of the plan is largely irrelevant but hard to see how there could be too many complaints against the proposal? Though no doubt they'll surface. Removing access is always going to irritate someone.

    The active travel proposal from Kilmac to the Glenview on the southbound side seems like a massive waste of money when you consider that there is a seemingly viable alternative already in place in the shape of Quill Road and Donnelly's Lane which will take you to the Glenview https://goo.gl/maps/B2kQuXAU6Sk4LDgp6

    Its like when (I assume WCC) wasted a load of money building the most bizarre 500m cycle lane that appears halfway up Windgates heading south, when they could have just accommodated cyclist friendly access through pedestrian access already present onto this parallel road to achieve the same thing for a fraction of the cost https://goo.gl/maps/es7BNnTNsb9ECjui7



  • Registered Users Posts: 7,351 ✭✭✭prunudo


    Ot to this thread but that Windgates road is going to be another contentious headache when they eventually decide to draw up plans to tackle it. Ideally needs a off line route in parts to accommodate bus and cycle lanes but that will be heavily objected too as usual.



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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,181 ✭✭✭p_haugh


    They have made proposals for closing some access points south of Kilmac.

    One of the access points proposed to be closed is the one for kilmurry cottages, which has already been blocked off as part of the recent works in Kilmac.

    Now, mind you, it's just a row of orange plastic bollards that's blocking it off atm so it will likely be made more permanent under this scheme.



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