Metro North

Re: Metro North

Postby gunter » Thu Oct 09, 2008 8:29 pm

This year's annual RIAI jaunt to somewhere trendy has given Frank McDonald another opportunity to extol the virtues of a tram system over a metro. I'd be interested to here the informed views on this subject of anyone who trampled their carbon footprints all over Bordeaux last weekend.

For what it's worth, and not having had the inclination, or the credid card capacity, to slip over to Bordeaux, I think McDonald makes a good case.


Bordeaux's tram system puts city on the right track« Prev 1/2 Next »

Bordeaux's tram network really does knit the city together - including new areas like La Bastide, (other picture) - while its design involved teams of engineers, architects, urban designers and experts on street furniture to produce a total network packageUnlike Dublin's 'modest' Luas network, a much more comprehensive approach to designing its tram system has utterly changed Bordeaux for the better, writes Frank McDonald Environment Editor

IF IRISH architects learned anything from a very pleasant sojourn in Bordeaux last week, it was about how a city can be transformed by the installation of a street-running tramway - not two free-standing lines that don't connect, as Dublin has, but a 44kms network that really does knit the city together.

"Making cities work" was the theme of this year's RIAI annual conference and, although numbers were way down to just 130 due to the onset of the recession at home, the educational value of the trip to Bordeaux - "the Cork of France", as someone call it - was incomparable and couldn't have come at a better time.

As RIAI president Seán Ó Laoire noted, Dublin and Bordeaux have approximately the same population in quite sprawling conurbations.

They also have historical links, particularly through the "Wild Geese" who fled to Bordeaux after the Treaty of Limerick and put names like Lynch and Phelan on some of its best chateaux.

And at a time when the idea of a directly-elected mayor with executive power has been mooted for Dublin, it is instructive to see what one French mayor - Alain Juppé - has managed to deliver in a remarkably short time, turning Bordeaux into "an exemplar of a historic city that has been positively transformed", as Ó Laoire said.

It might have been very different. Juppé's predecessor, Jacques Chaban Delmas, who (like him) had also been prime minister of France, had plans for years to give Bordeaux an underground metro. Worse still, he wanted to install a 12-lane freeway along the Garonne estuary, which would have severed the city and its river.

Fortunately, neither of these plans were implemented and when Juppé took over as mayor in 1995, he initiated a public discourse (limited to nine months, incidentally) on what should be done. The outcome was that the hoary old Gaullist's plans were scrapped, and Bordeaux set off in a quite different direction.

The key thing to its success was that the tramway wasn't treated merely as a transport project, to be implemented by engineers. As Mission Tramway's Claude Mandrau explained, its designers were obliged to deal with the entire surface of every street on which the trams would run - from building line to building line.

There were engineers involved, of course, but also teams of architects from Bordeaux, urban designers from Paris and experts on street furniture from other places. And they all worked together to produce a piece of total design, using the tramway as a sort of Trojan horse to transform the city's streets and squares.

There were several design competitions, including one to find the best design for a new riverside park on the left bank of the Garonne, where the historic core of Bordeaux is concentrated. This led to such wildly popular attractions as the Miroir d'Eau, an extensive sheet of water in front of the great set-piece of Place de la Bourse.

Designed by Michel Corajoud, it does everything but sing and dance - draining away and filling up again, spouting little fountains and sending up jets of water or spraying mist as dense as fog on hot summer days. A huge hit with kids, it is the centrepiece of a new waterfront promenade, with the sleek trams gliding past in the background. Francine Fort, who runs Bordeaux's Arc en Rêve architecture centre, says many people now come in from the suburbs "just to walk along the quays", as if this was a Mediterranean city like Barcelona. Most of the 18th century buildings have had their façades cleaned, and the light, honey-coloured limestone seems almost edible.

During the disruptive tramway works, with three lines all under construction at the same time, Arc en Rêve put up billboards featuring some of the designers in words and pictures, talking about their visions for the new Bordeaux. It spends most of its time educating children (and even taxi drivers) about architecture.

Last Sunday was "car-free day" in Bordeaux, but then most days are - at least in the historic core. In Place de la Comédie, the equivalent of Dublin's College Green, architects looked out in awe from the swanky Regent Hotel towards the magnificent Grand Theatre and heard nothing but the noise of people talking or laughing.

The quality of the paving and street furniture is superb throughout, with none of the clutter that we take for granted at home. The main reason, of course, is that everything has been carefully considered, from the modern lamp standards to the glass monoliths displaying an easy-to-read tramway network map and plan de quartier.

None of this has happened by accident. According to Tom Gray, an Irish architect-engineer who has been working in Paris since 1992, the transformation of Bordeaux has been wrought by a political determination to do things right, supported by the high level of technical expertise one finds in the French public sector.

Like Bordeaux's Le Cub, Luas was envisaged as a three-branch light rail network with lines to Ballymun, Dundrum and Tallaght. But then Ballymun was dropped (to cut costs) and the two remaining bits were delivered as free-standing lines because our politicians couldn't bring themselves to seize roadspace from cars in the city.

Oddly enough, Bordeaux airport is not served by Le Cub; a cost-benefit analysis (plus opposition from local taxi drivers) put paid to plans to extend it as far as Merignac. But trams glide through the entire historic core - now a designated World Heritage Site - without having to use overhead cables. It's magical, like the city itself.

Social integration was also a major objective. Thus, instead of being left high-and-dry, areas with social profiles like Ballymun were physically integrated with other parts of the city. "It was the project we needed to do that," says Francine Fort. "Suddenly, people in poorer communes felt they were being treated like other bordelais." This is evident in the design of new housing in La Bastide, a one- time swampy industrial zone on the right bank of the Garonne. With no class distinction, it is being developed as a pleasant residential area, with medium-density apartment blocks, lots of green open space (including new botanic gardens) and a wooded riverside walk.

Irish architects made a pilgrimage to Pessac, south of the city, to see Le Corbusier's "workers' housing" - a little estate of 51 homes from the mid-1920s, built by French industrialist Henri Fruges for his employees. Although some are defaced by crude alterations, this remarkably humane experimental housing may soon be listed.

A slab block of flats, overlooking Bordeaux's earliest and very elegant bridge (1824), has been spared thanks to a campaign by modernist architects. Designed by Claude Ferret in a form that Corb would have wholly endorsed, it sits on top of the main fire station and was built in the 1960s to house firemen and their families.

Other extraordinary sights included the Law Courts, by Richard Rogers, with the courts contained in tapering cedar pods within a glazed enclosure that also includes an atrium and five floors of office space. Completed in 2000, the Tribunal de Grande Instance is clearly an allegory about justice being seen to be done.

But a city's choice of public transport system is more critical than any piece of architecture. Bordeaux's tramway, which carries more than 250,000 passengers per day, cost €1.25 billion - less than a quarter of what Dublin plans to squander on Metro North, which (in effect) will put Luas in a tunnel without in any way civilising the streets.

© 2008 The Irish Times
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Re: Metro North

Postby notjim » Thu Oct 09, 2008 9:02 pm

He makes a good case for Bordeaux's tram system and for good planning and street maintenance, he never explains what is wrong with a metro; the calculation is that a Luas won't have the capacity to serve Swords and the airport, a metro will.
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Re: Metro North

Postby gunter » Thu Oct 09, 2008 9:38 pm

notjim: his last sentence says what he sees as wrong with Metro North

It will cost a multiple of the Luas equivalent and it, ''(in effect) will put Luas in a tunnel without in any way civilising the streets''

That is the point, isn't it?

That and the fact that, as the funding dries up, we'll be left with a transport system that consists of a little bit of this and a little bit of that and a comprehensive network of nothing except buses, just like now.
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Re: Metro North

Postby notjim » Thu Oct 09, 2008 9:41 pm

And I at least partly agree, I am a great fan of the potential of tram systems to civilize streets and hope we develop the Luas into a tram system; however, if a line to Swords and the airport requires greater capacity than a tram can supply: a metro is required. An intergrated system can have more than one modality.
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Re: Metro North

Postby gunter » Thu Oct 09, 2008 10:18 pm

notjim wrote:. . . if a line to Swords and the airport requires greater capacity than a tram can supply: a metro is required.


Or two trams?

If the capacity demand is that high, why not two routes to cover Swords and the airport, serve a wider catchment area and civilise a few more streets.
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Re: Metro North

Postby notjim » Thu Oct 09, 2008 10:28 pm

Again, that would normally be what I would say, but it is hard to imagine two lines from Swords to town that make sense, the distinction is between linking urban centers and serving an urban area.
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Re: Metro North

Postby gunter » Thu Oct 09, 2008 11:20 pm

notjim wrote:. . . but it is hard to imagine two lines from Swords to town that make sense,


Without getting out the maps and burning up brain cells that may be needed for something else, it is perhaps hard to imagine two lines from Swords to town that make sense, but is there not a well fed transportation consultant out there somewhere, engaged on a hefty retainer, who's job it is to imagine a couple of lines from Swords to town that would make sense?
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Re: Metro North

Postby notjim » Fri Oct 10, 2008 12:02 am

Perhaps, perhaps, but aren't they the same well-fed consultants who recommended the metro for transport 21?
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Re: Metro North

Postby weehamster » Fri Oct 10, 2008 8:31 am

Metro North will have a max capacity of around 20,000 passengers per hour
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Re: Metro North

Postby missarchi » Sat Oct 11, 2008 6:27 pm

frank makes very valid points...

I say lets have both!
there is another station proposal with the board if any one cares to fish it out...
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Re: Metro North

Postby SunnyDub » Tue Oct 14, 2008 7:36 pm

Well, it looks like we're getting neither, "metro postponed" except they can keep planning it! Existing Luas projects and motorways will continue, defeat for the greens me thinks.

So instead of putting people to work on our infrastructure during a downturn the government intends to pay people to sit on the dole and give people even more mortgage interest relief, unbelievable :mad:

Even Boris Johnson recognises that a recession is a golden opportunity to build up our infrastructure like Roosevelt did in the great depression. Instead current gov spending remains a joke & we all have to pay for it.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/main.jhtml?xml=/opinion/2008/10/14/do1401.xml
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Re: Metro North

Postby notjim » Tue Oct 14, 2008 7:50 pm

I don't know why you think that SunnyDub, in fact your post is super misleading and annoying not being based in any facts: they are budgeting to continue planning and enabling works, that is all that would have ever happened next year and generally they have a capital cut but they haven't said where it will fall so I guess they will just negotiate individual contracts to cause the required delays, they are also cutting regional road building.

Here is what it says on the transport departmental website:

This will enable progress on a wide range of projects, including:

* Luas extensions to Cherrywood, Docklands and Citywest;
* Planning and enabling works on Metro North;
* Planning works for the DART Interconnector.
* Improved bus priority measures in Dublin and the regional cities;
* The completion of the Middleton rail line
* Phase 1 of the Western Rail Corridor from Ennis to Athenry;
* The construction of the Kildare Route project
* Phase 1 of the Navan rail line;
* The continuation of Iarnród Éireann’s railway safety programme;
* The start of the Dublin city centre rail re-signalling programme;
* Continued roll-out of new railcars on the intercity routes;

Other notable projects that will be continued into 2009 are:


* The Rural Transport Programme (now operating in every county and will provide more than million passenger journeys in 2009)
* The Green Schools Programme (targeting 140,000 school kids by providing walking/cycling/public transport alternatives to get to school).
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Re: Metro North

Postby missarchi » Sat Oct 18, 2008 1:45 am

Has anyone spotted the planning authorities comments...DCC that is I mean its not on there website or in the EIS...

I find it funny that we are going to spend a few billion and the public will not even be able to comment on the Planning authorites findings...

be interesting what the cad say
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Re: Metro North

Postby missarchi » Wed Oct 22, 2008 3:03 pm

There will be eight new blocks varying in height from four to seven storeys with two basement levels, one of them linked directly to the proposed Metro North stop at Ballymun Road.

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/commercialproperty/2008/1022/1224454449863.html
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Re: Metro North

Postby SunnyDub » Wed Oct 22, 2008 6:31 pm

I will be proved right, I'll bet there'll be no funding for anything other than planning in 2009, so they'll be dependent on an allocation for 2010, me thinks - conjecture.

State slashes PPP target by a quarter amid funding chaos
Sunday Tribune
Sun 19th Oct 2008

THE GOVERNMENT has slashed its forecast for public-private partnership (PPP) investment in infrastructure up to 2012 by over 25% amid a rapid deterioration in finance availability for PPP schemes.

According to Mathias Pahlke, the head of European infrastructure at leading PPP player Nord/LB, it has become almost impossible to raise finance for schemes worth more than €100 million.

His comments raise the prospect that Irish PPP schemes such as Metro North, the rail interconnector and the school building programme may be hampered by the ongoing banking crisis.

"Large projects have got problems because they now need banks more than in the past. Because of the current situation, the number of banks willing to lend is limited and the syndication methods for spreading risk among banks have stalled," said Pahlke.

Pahlke said that were funding was available, it was considerably more expensive than previously, meaning projects were costing more and were missing affordability targets.

"The spreads are risen. Previously, you could get funding for 70-80 basis points above Libor, now its more likely to be 170-180 basis points," he said.

Pahlke said that he was confident the market would recover within five years but said that the cost of funding would remain high.

But one source said that finance could soon become an issue as there were serious doubts about the availability of long-term funding for major projects throughout Europe.

"Once the banks start lending again though, public infrastructure projects will be the sort of opportunities they will be looking for but the lending terms may never be as good as before".

Bank of Ireland, which has supported Irish PPP bidders in the past, said that it believed that PPPs remained a "very strong asset class".

A bank spokeswoman said, however, that it was clear that PPPs "will not remain fully insulated from the general tightening of credit markets".

She indicated that the bank believed that the protracted procurement processes involved for some PPPs would "increase the challenges associated with certainty of funding, and the terms and pricing of that funding".

The Department of Finance declined to comment.


However, some industry sources have indicated that the €2.3 billion cut in PPP forecasts, which was made last week, may also have been down to planning and procurement delays to specific projects.
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Re: Metro North

Postby missarchi » Mon Oct 27, 2008 7:03 pm

Status: Case is due to be decided by 3rd
March, 2009

Last day for making a submission to the Board: 29th
October, 2008

Fingal also now in on the act... Still no comments from DCC... I think it is quite confusing/misleading how part of the case number completly changes even though its the same project... Its interesting to note the EIS says bike racks are overprescibed but does nothing to mitigate this.

http://www.pleanala.ie/casenum/NA0003.htm

Fingal County Council

Construction, operation and maintainence of a light railway Belinstown,North County Dublin to St. Stephen's Green.

Case reference: PL06F.NA0003

Case type: Railway Order Application

Status: Case is due to be decided by 03-03-2009
Parties

* Railway Procurement Agency (Applicant)

* Dublin City Council (Local Authority) (Active)
* Fingal County Council (Local Authority) (Active)

History

* 18/09/2008: Lodged

Documents

* Schedule of Correspondence (NA0/CNA0003.pdf, PDF Format 15kB)
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Re: Metro North

Postby missarchi » Thu Oct 30, 2008 11:39 pm

http://www.independent.ie/national-news/budget-2009/news/funding-pledged--to-keep-projects-on-track-1499612.html

By Patricia McDonagh

Thursday October 16 2008

TRANSPORT Minister Noel Dempsey yesterday insisted "substantial funding" would be provided to ensure work continues on Dublin's Metro North railway system.

He said funding would also be made available to progress the DART Interconnector, an underground DART line which will run through the heart of Dublin city centre.

The move follows speculation about the fate of both projects in light of the flagging economy.

Mr Dempsey said that, despite constrained economic circumstances, the Government would not stop planning and providing for future public transport solutions.

Both projects would provide a greater increase in public transport capacity and transform the public transport system in the greater Dublin area.

Metro North -- which work will start on in 2010 -- will carry 34 million passengers per year when it opens and will eventually be able to carry more than 200 million passengers per year.

The DART Interconnector, meanwhile, will remove a major bottleneck in the Dublin rail system and facilitate more than 100 million passengers per year.

"In this Budget, the advanced works plus the planning for Metro North and for the DART Interconnector continue," he told the Dail during his speech on the Budget estimates for the Department of Transport.

"Provisions have been made to continue work on the critical public transport projects of Metro North and the Dart Interconnector. The 2009 estimates include substantial funding provision for these works."

The Department of Transport last night said €255m was being made available to the Railway Procurement Agency (RPA) to allow work to continue on these projects and others.

Mr Dempsey said the RPA applied last month to An Bord Pleanala for a railway order for Metro North and said the public private partnership tenders will be be submitted to the RPA in early February.

Once the railway order is in force, the RPA will commence enabling works for the public private partnership project.

Progress

On the DART Interconnector, the minister said he had made it clear to CIE that he wanted good progress on planning for the project maintained, and if possible accelerated.

During the Dail debate, the minister sought to defend the decision to scrap some projects as a result of the economic nose-dive.

The N11 Arklow to Rathnew in Co Wicklow is one of six road projects that has been put on the long finger in light of the downturn. Others include the Longford bypass and the Oranmore to Gort road in Co Galway.

This situation was "not ideal" but it was inevitable in the current difficult economic environment, Mr Dempsey said.

He pointed out his department was spending around €900m on public transport investment, compared to €12m in 1997.

- Patricia McDonagh
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Re: Metro North

Postby missarchi » Fri Oct 31, 2008 12:45 am

7.2. Metro Passes

RfR request that as a gesture of good will an annual pass be granted to each house under which the tunnels run. The passes would remain a feature of the house and pass on in any subsequent resale.

7.9. 3-D Models

RfR request that all residents have access to 3D models of stations and crossovers as the EIS and RPA have failed to produce adequate information to date.

:D

im buying;)


http://www.res4real.com/_mgxroot/page_10813.html
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Re: Metro North

Postby notjim » Fri Oct 31, 2008 10:31 am

missarchi: you often have interesting information in your posts but you make it so hard to work out what it is; why not just explain that the last post was a quote from the "residents for realignment" submission to the railway order. As for the residents for realignment, the stupid greed, they, we in fact, are getting a metro connection for the city centre and they expect free passes. so annoying.

I was at an RPA talk in TCD during the week, nothing so surprising; one point I hadn't fully appreciated is the the O'Connell bridge stop will only be partly mined, the bit under the river; it will effectively have two station boxes which will be excavated from the surface and then a large connecting tunnel will be mined between them, running between the tracks with cross tunnels giving access to the platforms. They also talked a bit about the Lifffey bridge, they are hoping to have it up by Q4 2009, with three spans in a similar pattern to OC bridge itself, the permanent bridge will be built to the immeadiate west of the temporary one and will be ready in 2011 and at that point the temporary bridge will come down.
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Re: Metro North

Postby missarchi » Thu Nov 06, 2008 1:39 am

around 115 submissions

I still cannot understand how DCC scan and upload most submissions but the board dont???
I mean a higher authority and standards? it makes it easy for everyone?
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Re: Metro North

Postby missarchi » Thu Nov 20, 2008 6:54 pm

around 200 submissions and some prominent people and businesses/organizations...

http://www.pleanala.ie/documents/controls/NA0/CNA0003.pdf
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Re: Metro North

Postby PVC King » Thu Nov 20, 2008 10:29 pm

2 choices on how to spend €4.5bn option 1 build an underground Luas line or double the capitalisation of the three largest banks?

result 1 build a white elephant that services 4 square miles of city centre, 8 square miles of urban sprawl, 2 square miles of airport / ancillary carpark and 6 sq miles of suburban sprawl and a town centre (Swords)

result 2 get the banks lending and let the economy recover over time.
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Re: Metro North

Postby cgcsb » Fri Nov 21, 2008 12:35 am

so you think that instead of vastly improving public transport, and therefor the economy that we should give tax payers money to private financial institutions in the hope that they'll be so kind as to lend money to businesses (at a profit because they earn interest off that) to kick start the economy even though the current financial crisis is very much outside the controll of Irish banks and the Irish government. Why do so many people advocate socialising banking losses and capitalizing their profits?
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Re: Metro North

Postby notjim » Fri Nov 21, 2008 1:26 am

PVC King: can we not stick to the tradition of debating MN on the other thread and giving planning news on this one?
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Re: Metro North

Postby missarchi » Tue Nov 25, 2008 11:28 pm

the RPA have been very busy updating there website.
I told you it was on the website!

October 2008 - Dublin Metro North First Report of Independent Experts on Tunnelling.pdf(2.92MB)
http://www.rpa.ie/cms/download.asp?id=884

Q. Can the public see the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)?

A. The Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) Scoping Report is available on the RPA website. This sets out the issues that will be considered during the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) process. The Metro North EIA is ongoing at the moment.

The actual EIS Report won’t be complete until the end of 2007. This will be made available to the public. This is the document which presents all of the information assessed as part of the EIA.

http://www.rpa.ie/?id=327

Q. Can I take my bike on Metro North?

A. No. It is a policy of RPA that all capacity on Luas and Metro is for passengers and not taken up by bicycles. Bike racks will be provided at stations.

Public consultation is ongoing and comments are invited on design options for Metro North. More information will be added to this page as it becomes available.To request additional information or submit your comments please do so by clicking Contact Us or you can e-mail us on info@rpa.ie
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