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Actually some of the N7 content on the m50.ie website is out of date and refers to a time when LUAS was going to cross some of the lanes and therefore require traffic lights for some movements. That design was replaced by this design http://www.m50.ie/pages/pressarea-n7-interchange.htm which was then improved with this one: http://www.m50.ie/pages/pressarea-n7-interchange2.htm.
So, I believe both junctions will be completely freeflow now, however, it is still unclear to me what the traffic coming out of the Red Cow Hotel(?) will be able to do. If they want to go M50N it seems they have some dodgy stop-starting to do according to the design in the first link above. 2nd Link above does not show that junction.
Anybody else know what is planned there?
Edit: Doh. Peter beat me to it. Glad to see I’m not the only one confused 🙂
Was there a fly past at the end Morlan? We were told at least twice on television that the small contingents of aircraft that kept going by would eventually combine at the end for a full fly past, but it doesn’t seem to have happened!
All aircraft did not combine into one mega flypast – but in fairness this would have required the Alouette helicopters (40+ years old???) to keep up with the government jets – and even if they could both fly at the same speed, turbulence etc. could be a problem…
Compatible types did fly together in large formations, and were a wonderful sight to see –
- Gulfstream / Learjet / Beechcraft Super King Air / PC 9’s
- Cessna’s / Alouette’s / EC135
Great photos available here – be sure to click to the second page: http://www.irishairpics.com/cgi-bin/ikonboard.cgi?act=ST&f=1&t=1174
Just spun through some of the updates on the NRA website …
I notice that the appendix to press release about activity in 06 etc. mentions that Naas Road upgrade will be complete by Q2 06!!! (I understand that the traffic lights at Kill and Johnstown should be history in a couple of weeks when the new flyovers are opened up).
Also, NRA are inviting comments/feedback from folks on following draft documents:
Bat doc contains interesting picture of bat house in Clare (looks like regular cottage), and concept of Green bridges (while normal bridges have railings/walls, green bridges also have trees/hedge growing on the bridge beside the railings).
Landscape doc is quite extensive – 127 pages – focuses on native species, identifies guidelines for various parts of the road (median, verge, boundaries, etc.). Mentioned that motorway art can have (positive) safety implications. Eg. art on Kildare bypass was designed to be visible at night to help keep motorists interested (i.e. awake).
(BTW, I’ve tried underlining the URL’s this time to make em a bit more obvious…seems a bit easier to read)
Personally, I prefer the current trend of giving native wildlife a bit of a chance. From my point of view, ideal planting scheme would include:
– native hardwoods in large spaces (e.g. the area trapped inside the big motorway roundabouts)
– hedging using native trees/ bushes (evergreen and deciduous)…trees like holly are in big trouble at the moment.
– wildflower meadow areas
– locally sourced seeds where possible
– rotten timber allowed to rot
– blend into landscape
– disguise road from afar
– keep genes local (e.g. shedding of leaves tuned to the local micro-cliamte)
– support native invertebrates
– support native birds / mammals
– minimal maintenance
– no pest control / fertiliser
– can handle the climate
Of course mammel underpasses are critical also to avoid isolating populations.
Thinking about it, why not create ponds in really large areas (help with flood alleviation as well as wildlife).
I believe on some recent schemes, the top soil is stored locally explicitly to provide “seed banks” for when the landscaping is being applied.
Another safety aspect of the poles used in road signs is their strength. On some new high-speed roads (e.g. Kildare bypass) you will see signs that are on lattice posts rather than steel poles. I understand that these crumble / fold much easier in the event that a car etc. crashes into them. As far as I recall, the lattice posts are safe enough that crash barriers do not need to be installed to shield them, so less installation hassle/cost.
As far as I know there are design rules (nra/national road design standards) that determine whether a road can qualify as a Motorway, and also what the max speed is (the design speed of the road). The higher the spec of the road or the higher the design speed, then the longer the space for on/off ramps, the further the distance between junctions, the wider the bends, etc. Obviously the higher the spec / speed then the more land/money that is required, etc.
The tightness of some of the bends is the reason why some of the M50 is reduced to 100km/h.
Some of the new Naas Road junctions currently in construction seem to have v. tight on/off ramps. Maybe because of space constraints? Maybe this prevents it being a MWay.
Can anyone out there confirm/deny/give some definitive examples?
asdasd: I doubt that route will be renamed M1, but actually it is already classified as part of E01: Euroroute 1. It goes from Larne in Northern Ireland to Rosslare in the south… and then it restarts in Spain, cuts though Portugal and finishes in Seville, believe it or not! See here for more details.
Thanks for the image! I’ve only been on the road once. I think they’re a good idea, but as far as I recall some of them were fairly ‘busy’ – a bit too much text / too little blue space. Increasing the sign size and removing the hyphens between all the road names might make them a bit easier to read.
Don’t know of 3 lane motorways, but there are 3 lane dual-carriageways including
- N4 from ~M50 (Liffey Valley) to ~Lucan
- N7 from ~M50 (Naas Road / Red Cow) to ~Rathcoole
There are plans for more 3 lane roads:
- Much of M50 to be upgraded to 3 lanes (motorway)
- N4 from M50 to Leixlip junction
- N7 from Rathcoole to Naas
You can get status and some maps for all the major road projects at the NRA website.
I support 2 lanes in each direction on all major routes, bypassing the towns and cities. The current situation is not acceptable. Decent roads are safer, business friendly, local friendly. In time they should encourage businesses to cheaper premises outside of Dublin, which will bring jobs, then families, helping to strengthen vulnerable communities.
I don’t like the trend of all all main roads leading into Dublin: The Outer Orbital Route currently being explored (possibly from Drogheda to Navan to Maynooth/Kilkock to Naas and maybe even Wicklow) sounds like a good idea to me. I also like the idea of a decent North/South road in the West. Something like Sligo to Galway to Limerick to Cork (and maybe Wexford).
Building these roads does have a cost, financially and arguably to heritage and the local environment. But I think the cost is worth it: lives saved, the hours waiting in traffic avoided (these hours are wasted forever!!!), the towns and cities that can breath, the communities that will get a new lease of life. Public transport (rail etc.) will help reduce cars, but we need to get jobs out of Dublin, not just the people.
M50 plans available here:
Decent pictures of new junctions in last couple of pages of this doc (> 3MB): http://www.fingalcoco.ie/services/DEVELOP/M50/Chapters/Non_Tech_Summary.pdf
And one more question-why are there so many roundabouts with traffic lights on them?They cancel each other out!!?
Free-flow junctions are the ideal solution where motorways cross, but they require more bridges hence more money. As far as I know Europe would not fund the (original) M50 with these junctions in the 80’s etc. because it was a completely new route and traffic volume predictions were not trusted (suspicion that traffic volume would not justify the expense). Hence M50 has large roundabouts.
Obviously roundabouts give more free-flow than purely signal controlled junctions (traffic lights). However, roundabouts always give priority to traffic already on the roundabout, i.e. from junctions to the right. Thus an enormous flood of cars trying to join a roundabout will be severaly blocked by even a modest stream of cars from a junction to the right, if that stream is mostly continuing around the roundabout. Traffic lights are used on busy roundabouts to prevent this happenning: traffic lights actually improve the flow and reduce the average waiting time. They can be tuned so that different roads have different priorities depending on time of day etc.
Finally, I notice that in UK they now have roundabouts with traffic lights that are only switched on at rush hour. Best of both worlds (for non-motorway crossings)?
Why can’t they fix the problems we have instead of creating new ones, such as “outer ring roads”?
If you or anyone else knows how to solve ‘the problems’ without impacting the public, please let us know!
Yep, saw the news. (Dept. of Transport press release for those interested). Unfortunately they too refer to the Outer Orbital Route as the Outer Ring Road. 🙁
vinnyfitz, Lotts, Rory W, d_d_dallas:
Here is my understanding of new ring roads planned / in construction for Dublin
Outer Ring Road is pretty much a dual carrigeway eventually from N81 Blessington road to N7 Kingswood (new interchange near Baldonnel) to Nangor road (Wyeth) to Lucan South to N4 Lucan (Woodies interchange). The middle bit (N7 to Nangor Road) is now open. Note also, there will be a spur dual-carriageway to Adamstown, along the Cork railway line. Idea is to get local traffic off the M50, but to be honest I reckon it will be hectic when the M50 upgrade kicks in. You can see the route of this road in the SDCC Development plan maps
Outer Orbital Route is what Bertie is referring to (but unfortunately the article or Bertie called it outer ring road). A motorway-class road circling Greater Dublin Region. Something like Drogheda to Navan to Maynooth to Nass / Newbridge, and maybe beyond…was referred to by Frank in Irish Times a year or two ago after a visit to nra. Here’s a little nugget of info from Minister of Transport in 2004 .
Hope this helps!