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N55 - Athlone to Ballymahon [preferred route published; complete before 2032]

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  • Moderators, Entertainment Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 14,406 Mod ✭✭✭✭marno21


    Project Engineer in Westmeath National Roads Office, Ann Marie Corroon, said that the timeframe for the project is “between eight and thirteen years”...

    :(
    It is beyond parody at this stage.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,742 ✭✭✭roadmaster


    marno21 wrote: »
    It is beyond parody at this stage.

    That’s crazy stuff they are not going to get two stressed anyway


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,867 ✭✭✭Pete_Cavan


    Imo they should be building more of the upgraded route on the existing road. There is about 2km south of Glasson and potentially 0.6km north of it which would be suitable for online upgrade, plus at least 1km more north of Tang. There is only a small number of houses on these stretches and many of them are small old bungalows which probably won't be occupied beyond the current occupants anyway. Building more online should mean less CPOing, less environmental issues, reduced costs and ultimately faster delivery of the project.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,574 ✭✭✭veryangryman


    Pete_Cavan wrote: »
    Imo they should be building more of the upgraded route on the existing road. There is about 2km south of Glasson and potentially 0.6km north of it which would be suitable for online upgrade, plus at least 1km more north of Tang. There is only a small number of houses on these stretches and many of them are small old bungalows which probably won't be occupied beyond the current occupants anyway. Building more online should mean less CPOing, less environmental issues, reduced costs and ultimately faster delivery of the project.

    I cant think of much of that road id like to see again, houses, hedges and awkward bends galore. Lets do a quality upgrade here, its been a long time coming


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,826 ✭✭✭SeanW


    Agreed. There are a few small bits of the current road that are good, but the bulk of it is poor.

    But ... 13 years :mad: and the plan isn't even all that ambitious, as it looks like it still goes very near to Ballykeeran. While it may cut the bad bend and some of the steep hills, it will still mean a lot of traffic noise in Ballykeeran which will not have much room to grow, to say the least with the new road cutting so close. I also would not be surprised if the new road has urban speed limits or gets them soon after construction owing to the new roads' proximity to the village centre.

    Could it be cut into phases with some phases done faster?


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  • Registered Users Posts: 6,867 ✭✭✭Pete_Cavan


    I cant think of much of that road id like to see again, houses, hedges and awkward bends galore. Lets do a quality upgrade here, its been a long time coming
    The sections of road I am talking about are quite straight and any bends could be improved as part of the upgrade. The road would obviously be widened to the applicable standard. A mix of online and offline sections could be of similar quality in a shorter time.


  • Moderators, Entertainment Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 14,406 Mod ✭✭✭✭marno21


    Now we have an N55 Steering Group to make racket about this development

    https://www.longfordleader.ie/news/news/438045/concern-over-new-athlone-to-ballymahon-n55-route-plans.html

    It doesn't seem to be going anywhere at the minute anyway so they need not be too concerned.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,826 ✭✭✭SeanW


    I'm not usually a fan of NIMBYs but in this case they do have a point - for some reason the "New" N55 will be really close to the existing one, such that all the traffic (and all the noise and everything) will still be very close to the towns and homes on the current route. Not to mention that if any of these towns or villages grow, like a few hundred metres, they'll quickly encompass the new road. Ballykeeran and Glasson look particularly problematic. Why is the "emerging preferred corridor" so close to the existing urban areas?

    I made a submission and raised my view that the new road should give the urban areas a wide berth, IIRC I wrote in support of the blue option (Option B). This design is puzzling.


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,882 ✭✭✭munchkin_utd


    Longford County Council have a clearer map of the route than the newspapers in their broschure
    http://www.longfordcoco.ie/services/roads/latest-news/n55-eprc-brochure.pdf

    As for the 13 years timeline, they must be planning something similar to the N55 upgrade in Cavan where sections were done bit by bit when funding became available and having the road so close to the old one allows this to happen


  • Moderators, Entertainment Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 14,406 Mod ✭✭✭✭marno21




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  • Registered Users Posts: 8,826 ✭✭✭SeanW


    marno21 wrote: »
    Thanks for the update/article.

    Hopefully by "design modifications" they mean moving the plan at least 1km to the West. Northern part looks good but the Southern part is a head-scratching mess. Glasson and Ballykeeran both need proper bypasses, but the planned road cuts very close to the villages to the point of being more like an inner relief road. Why? :confused: The plan is for a new road anyway, why not build the new road far enough from the villages as to give them some space and quiet?


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,882 ✭✭✭munchkin_utd


    Westmeath co co have a project website with working links to broschures but otherwise I cant find any news on progress with the scheme.




  • Registered Users Posts: 53 ✭✭cartoncowboy


    Is the plan for this to be single carriageway or dual of some kind?



  • Registered Users Posts: 7,882 ✭✭✭munchkin_utd


    you would presume the road type would be chosen appropriately matched to the traffic.

    The traffic is barely 4000 AADT at the 2 stations on the N55 (admittedly not on this exact stretch, but surely it'd be close enough) https://trafficdata.tii.ie/publicmultinodemap.asp

    For a 2+1 the threshold is 14,000, a 2+2 20,000 https://www.tiipublications.ie/library/DN-GEO-03059-01.pdf

    If I understand right, theres to be no more 2+1 any more so anything that might require that could be done as a 2+2 (tight dual with no hard shoulder like Kells N3 section) but, its still difficult to see how they could possibly justify a dual when the traffic is (probably) not even near the threshold for a 2+1



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,578 ✭✭✭KrisW1001


    You're right: there will be no more 2+1 builds in Ireland. The most likely options for a secondary road with such low traffic is Type 2 Single Carriageway (Diagram here: courtesy of sligococo.ie). If there are busier sections at either end of the scheme, it may get bumped to Type 1 for consistency. There's almost no chance of a Type 2 Dual Carriageway here, which is recommended for traffic above 13,000 AADT: three times the current volume (20,000 is the maximum for Type 2 DC).



  • Moderators, Entertainment Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 14,406 Mod ✭✭✭✭marno21




  • Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 23,218 Mod ✭✭✭✭godtabh




  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    Looks like this will be done in bits rather than a single catch all project




  • Moderators, Entertainment Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 14,406 Mod ✭✭✭✭marno21


    Seems rather pragmatic. It'll get built this way same as the LVNS projects on the west coast (even though they are underway 10+ years now and only partially complete).



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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,578 ✭✭✭KrisW1001


    This delivery method would work for most of the secondary network projects, and a few of the primary ones too. Our secondary roads were mostly overlooked in the good times, and even if the work needed isn’t headline-grabbing, they still need attention.

    Plus, it keeps road construction expertise in the country; if the current delays on big projects keep up, then without these small jobs, anyone who can build a road will just leave (or go bust)



  • Moderators, Entertainment Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators Posts: 14,406 Mod ✭✭✭✭marno21



    Tender out for topographical, LIDAR, orthographic and utility surveys along the route.



  • Registered Users Posts: 3,742 ✭✭✭roadmaster


    I understand WCCs appoach to this project as they mention it worked for them on the N52, but how much time & funds have being wasted on the previous approach for them now to switch tactics?



  • Registered Users Posts: 6,867 ✭✭✭Pete_Cavan


    Nothing has been wasted. The preferred route for the entire length has been selected and then sections can be progressed from there. It is the sensible way of approaching a road like this, trying to bring it all to construction as one project only creates more problems and takes longer.

    The two sections being progressed now could potentially be complete or mostly complete by the end of this decade, not a chance of that for the full length. A similar approach should be taken with the N17 north of Knock.



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,578 ✭✭✭KrisW1001


    Yes, the important part is to have the whole project designed - after that, piecemeal bypasses can be done safe in the knowledge that when everything is complete, they'll form a sensible route.



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