Inchicore on Track

AuthorMessage DateMessage
Paul Cullen19/05/2009Following the large meeting of residents of CIE Estate at the end of April and the subsequent meeting of the steering committee which volunteered from that meeting, we're happy to announce the formation of Inchicore on Track.

Inchicore on Track, which is composed of residents from all parts of the estate, will ensure that the voice of CIE Residents is adequately heard on the plans of Irish Rail to build a portal for the underground Dart interconnector in our area.

We have a broad mix of backgrounds and experience and a lot of energy and ideas and we plan to make sure that nothing happens to the detriment of our historic estate.

Our chair is John Beck and we will shortly set up a dedicated email address. Regular updates will be posted on this website and we also plan to consult with the broader residents as often as is feasible.
Paul Cullen19/05/2009This is the letter Inchicore on Track has sent to Irish Rail. It sets out the concerns of the CIE Estate residents and requests a meeting as soon as possible with the company over the Dart interconnector project as it affects our area:

Dear Peter [Muldoon, project manager, Irish Rail],

On Monday, April 27th, almost 200 residents of the CIE Estate in Inchicore met to discuss Irish Rail’s plans for the Underground Dart as they affect our estate. The meeting agreed to set up a steering committee to handle the response of local residents to your company’s plans.

At the meeting, the following points were raised:

· residents expressed extreme concern about the lack of information about Irish Rail’s plans. There was widespread criticism of the company’s consultation meeting at the Hilton on April 20th. Following this consultation meeting, attendees called for more information and detail on the project, and extensive consultation with local residents
· the meeting expressed its support for an integrated public transport system, but not at the cost of the heritage of our area and the quality of life of the people who live in it.
· many of those at the meeting also demanded information on why Irish Rail has changed its project at such a late stage by moving the turnback facility from Heuston to Inchicore
· there was widespread concern that the project is being fast-tracked without adequate consultation in the Inchicore area. Other communities affected by the interconnector have been talking to Irish Rail for a long time yet consultation with us is expected to happen between now and September.
· on the basis of the information currently available to us, the positioning of the portal in our estate is completely unacceptable.
· speakers pointed out that this is a settled residential area and one of the most historic areas in the city. The CIE Estate and Works, which dates back to the 1840s, is one of the best-preserved examples of Victorian industrial architecture in the country. Residents are extremely concerned about the impact of Irish Rail’s plans on the historic fabric of the estate.
· none of the roads on our estate are suitable for works access to this project
· all elected local representatives attended the meeting and express opposition to the plans for a portal in the CIE Estate.
· on the basis of this meeting, which was also attended by most local representatives and local election candidates, this committee was mandated to seek a meeting with Irish Rail as quickly as possible for the purpose of clarifying your plans.

We ask therefore that a meeting be arranged soon between all your relevant experts and a delegation from our committee, now known as Inchicore on Track.

I look forward to hearing from you shortly; my contact details are below.

John Beck

Chairman, Inchicore on Track
Michael22/05/2009Is this committee only concerned with the CIE Estate or the Inchicore area? Personally I would love to see a DART railway in Inchicore it would be fantastic for the locality but I agree with some of you sentiments that the current station is in an unsuitable place. I would be intrested in joining this committee but only if they were in favour of some form of DART station for the area.
Michael O'Flanagan22/05/2009The above Michael is not to be confused with Michael O'Flanagan... who is very concerned about the possible disruption to the lives of the people of CIE posed by the opening of a portal in the middle of the estate......... Ní neart go cur le chéile.
Alan C02/06/2009I would just like to ask the people behind Inchicore On Track whether it is wise to exclude the wider Inchicore/Kilmainham Area and just to represent yourselves directly to IR. The notion of divide and conquer comes to mind. I would feel a better outcome could be achieved through a more represntative forum. Dealing directly with IR could cost you in the end. I would appeal to any councellors reading to help in the orginastion of such a forum otherwise IR will just go and do what they have planned.
Michael O'Flanagan02/06/2009I think it is extremely bad manners to contribute items to the "Forum" without giving a full name. Items submitted without a full name should be excluded and deleted by the moderator otherwise the Forum is open to abuse. This Forum offers huge benefits to the community (eg. the recent discussion on Kilmainham Mill) but contributions of a contentious nature should not be proffered behind the mask of a pseudonym.
Paul Cullen03/06/2009As the moderator. let me intervene here. These are early days for this site and this forum, and my view is that I welcome all contributions, regardless of whether the poster wants to identify him/herself of not. I prefer when people identify themselves but I'm not insisting on it.

However, I will not tolerate personal attacks or mindless abuse and these postings will be removed as soon as I'm informed. I don't have much patience either for petty online shouting matches; get out and enjoy the good weather.

On this basis, I've removed the thread on 'bad manners' and I'll be monitoring this thread closely.
Michael O'Flanagan03/06/2009That sounds fair to me!
Paul Cullen07/06/2009A group of CIE Estate residents from Inchicore on Track met Irish Rail last Wednesday (June 3rd) in relation to the Dart project.

It was a lengthy meeting (up to 11 pm!) during which some matters were clarified but many others remained unclear.

A wider public consultation for all CIE Estate residents and the people of Inchicore is due to take place within the coming weeks.

More information will be posted here when it comes to hand.
Sarah Madigan09/06/2009If you reflect on the the location of the proposed station using the left hand side of this map:

It is approximately a rhomboid bordered by: Kylemore Road/Sarsfield Road, to the north; Tyrconnell Road/Grattan Crescent, to the east; the Grand Canal, to the south; and Kylemore Road to the west. At the "centre" is the proposed station.

Access, by foot, is "convenient" from Inchicore Village, CIE Estate, Lower Ballyfermot (via upgraded Khyber Pass-passenger railbridge over mainline & a "parallel" railbridge located half-way along the course of Landen Road), Bluebell and the light industrial region adjacent to the Kylemore Road.

The catchment area of the station extends, quite naturally, beyond Inchicore. (In marked contrast to the existing DART where half the catchment area is underwater beneath Dublin Bay!)

Road transport access is through the industrial estate that is located south of the Dublin-Cork main railway line, east of the Kylemore Road, and west of the Inchicore works. It is proximal to the N5/M50.

Additional road transport access to the N4 is possible too via an overpass above Liffey Gaels / Dan Ryan depot.

The road access is really the key to the whole caper.

1. Terminate city buses that service West Dublin within the CIE works i.e. North Liffey corridor - 66, 67, 25, 26...; South Liffey corridor - 21, 51, 68, 69, 78A, 79... Passenger access to the city centre is now possible via the Dart Interconnector

2. Terminate provincial buses that service the south: Naas, Port Laoise, Limerick, Cork; and the north: Midlands, Galway within the CIE works too. Once again passenger access to the city centre is via the Dart Interconnector. Indeed this could extend to the airport if Metro North is constructed too. This releases Busaras for (tastefu)l redevelopment, that pays appropriate homage to Michael Scott, as an adjunct to the IFSC.

The exisiting traffic congestion East-West transport access along the north and south quays is alleviated.

Sarah Madigan
Paul Cullen09/06/2009Interesting thinking Sarah but my God, that will really put the frighteners on people locally...
Sarah Madigan10/06/2009Paul,

it is purely hypothetical. There are probably many other equally valid scenarios. Ultimately I can't see a justification for locating the railway station where it is currently proposed unless there is a larger motivation.

No matter. It presents an opportunity for "benefits" to flow to many interested parties. And here I don't necessarily mean the local community. For example, in South America, one particular politician

it is alleged specialised in not dissimilar "tunneling" opportunities.

In your first post in this thread you said: "We have a broad mix of backgrounds and experience and a lot of energy and ideas and we plan to make sure that nothing happens to the detriment of our historic estate."

I think we need to think a little outside-the-box and put ourselves in the shoes of those who benefit benignly, or not, from the development of "The Works."

How would they develop it? Are there pending road extension/widening projects in the area? Are there plans afoot to "breach" the listed perimeter wall of the CIE estate for site access? Can we uncover anything under the FOIA act about the real intention? Is there advice available from fellow Dubliners who harried other poorly-conceived developments for example the Jury's site in Ballsbridge?

In terms of PR the development could easily be portrayed as benefitting the immediate community, Dublin City and Ireland. Opponents of the development could be protrayed as luddites and marginalised for standing in the way of welcome and necessary progress.

John Farrelly10/06/2009Sarah,

I think the obvious motivation of locating the station where it is currently planned is for CIE to build high rise buildings within the now industrial part of the CIE Works, if it was to benefit the current community the station would be further East towards the Village and probably Underground. One of the election flyers I saw (cant remember the name) had a suggestion of having the portal of the tunnel in the War Memorial Park which would still come up in the CIE works (the non residential part) but at least then the disruption would be far more limited.
Sarah Madigan10/06/2009Hi John,

it would certainly be a no-brainer to build high-density housing units within the CIE works. But there are some possible issues:

1. The CIE Works is clearly a brownfield site and would require decontamination.

2. We, as a nation, have built too many housing units over the past five years. Many currently lie empty in ghost estates peppered across the land. Surely its just too crass an idea for CIE to build even more?

Then again it could be argued that if the ghost estates that are more than than a 1hr commute from the city were demolished then it would provide a useful pretext for "repatriation" of families back into redeveloped brownfield sites close to the City. The CIE Works would prove an ideal site! It could become a mini version of Adamstown that would serve to displace the heart of Inchcore village from the Black Lion junction to where Diesel Shed no. 7 currently rusts?

The idea of the portal in the Memorial Park has issues too:

1. If the terminus/turnback is still to be located within the Inchicore works then an overland route which would cross Ballyfermot Road/Sarsfield Road/Dan Ryan/Con Colbert Road would be required. (This would effectively be the overland version of their current plans for a buried/tunnelled route.) I don't think this is feasible.

2. Any development in the Memorial Park, apart from the obvious desecration of a war monument, would, be the thin end of the wedge in putting the Phoenix Park on the agenda for "tasteful" re-development. (I personally view the Memorial Park as an adjunct of the Phoenix Park.)

Back in the seventies CIE had plans to demolish the whole complex within the perimeter wall: both "The Works" and the residential estate. Is it feasible that the old plans are available under FOIA/30 yr rule? Might they provide the germ of what CIE have planned, albeit updated to reflect current practice some 40 yrs later?

Alan C10/06/2009Hi guys, I don't personally know any of you , but I live on Inchicore Rd and resident in the area 7 years. I am very interested in this issue and I have to say this discussion is very good.

I am in agreement with you about the alternative agenda here for IR, and I think part of it may also be to do with Heuston Station itself. If you remember some of their vast ammount of land here was either rezoned or is designated mixed use High rise in the Heuston Framework plan. ( link below)

This is important as IR have said that they can not facilitate the turnback at Heuston, however they do seem to be able to facilitate a skyscraper here!
Bit suspicious, sounds to me like at least part of their agenda is to secure the value of this land, and I would question their reasoning in deciding Heuston was not suitable.

I dont see why they can't have the openinig/turnback at Heuston as well as a station in Inchicore since the tracks go through it anyway, this could be under con colbert road with escalators up to inchicore road near sarsfield road, or further along if more suitable.

The map of the Heuston plan:

The Full Plan:
Alan C10/06/2009There are better illustrations of just how much development, including the infamous arc to the park, in the documents with CIE Lands A and B in the titles.

There's no doubt that if they can fit all that on the site they could fit the portal/turnback.
I have nothing against the Heuston Plans, they are good plans, but the cost analysis falls over if this is the reasoning. As the extra cost of tunneling to the works would be more than the increased value of the land, but then CIE aren't paying for the tunnel! They just get the benefit without the cost! Maybe this is an influence?
Alan C10/06/2009Apologies for ranting on.
But while I'm thinking about it, it may make sense to IR to locate the "future station" at IR land in the works if Heuston land is the real agenda, as there the cost of the "Future" station, and its land is calculated at Zero in the cost benefit thus helping secure the funding for the tunnel extension, as well as the spin off benefit of allowing them develop their land in Inchicore, in the future.

I think the land in Inchicore is the smaller agenda here and IR are happy to use this as a distraction. And trample over peoples homes and lives needlessly in the process.
Paul Cullen19/06/2009Irish Rail's consultation with Inchicore residents took place in the CIE Sports and Social club on Wednesday.

About 200-250 attended; some politicians but not as many as when they were all trying to get elected.

Irish Rail staff mounted panels explaining the Underground Dart project from 7 pm. Thankfully, unlike the earlier ''consultation'' in the Hilton last month, most of the panels were relevant to Inchicore.

That gave little succour to locals who quizzed the rail people about all aspects of their proposals for the area.

Then we had the meeting. If I'd known it was going to go on till 11.45 I'd at least have brought a bottle of water. 11.45!

To say it got hot and heavy at times is an under-statement. Hot and heavy throughout, really, and not a single speaker from the floor in favour of this project.

Project manager Peter Muldoon made a lengthy slide presentation to start the meeting, which was followed by q & a.

Hard to summarise such a lengthy meeting but here goes:
- the Underground Dart is a major infrastructural needed to increase capacity on the rail system and get over the bottleneck at Connolly.
- the end of the tunnel was to be at Heuston but then they decided that wasn't possible; too much disruption at Heuston.
- the project has been in planning for five year but the decision to continue the tunnel to Inchicore and build the portal in the CIE Works was taken only last January. This decision was made public only in April.
- Irish Rail claims it has looked at at least five options and has chosen the one that has the minimum effect on the CIE Estate and heritage buildings in the CIE Works.
- it wants to apply for a railway order to Bord Pleanala before the end of the year, leaving little time for people to react.
- none of the vital information on the expected effect of boring the tunnel in terms of noise, dust, vibrations etc is available yet, so we can't say what the effects will be
- the average depth of the tunnel in our area will be half of the depth across the city.
- Irish Rail recognises the depth of concern and opposition to the project in this area but so far at least hasn't modified its proposals.

I could go on. Watch this space.
Resident122/06/2009Two main things occurred to me after the presentation:
1. The location of the planned Inchicore station is completely undesirable. Ideally it would be in the centre of the village but the War Memorial Gardens would be also a good option. The planned location will not be safe late at night and will be a long walk for most residents of the village. The Luas should have stopped in the centre of the village, it would have reinvigorated it - the same mistake should not be made twice.
2. The route outlined which was considered (but rejected) with George's Villas being demolished appears better than the current plan. At least if these houses were to be purchased from IR they would get a fair price and could move on - the current route will result in them being put through a horrendous few years of construction and thereafter potentially ongoing vibrations of the trains but with no compensation. The tunnel routed through George's villas would then disrupt fewer other residential houses. I do not mean to offend anyone and understand that these houses are peoples homes, it is just a suggestion that I would like people's views on.
Sarah Madigan22/06/2009Dear "resident1",

I strongly disagree that the terminus should be located in the Memorial Park/War Memorial Gardens. It's even further from the village than the proposed location!

John Farrelly23/06/2009Why does the Turnaround have to be located in Inchicore? Is it not planned that the trains will go out as far as Hazelhatch? If so why is the turnback not there? The people of Inchicore need to campaign hard for the route to be diverted slightly to the Village and an Underground station to be built there if the plan goes ahead...I dont think that is a lot to ask IR and while I know the residents of the CIE estate have serious reservations if it is to go ahead we should push for the station to be located at the village in order to improve cooperation with IR
Village resident23/06/2009I strongly agree with resident1, the location of the station should be in the center of the village. The porposed station is located out of the way and does not serve Inchicore well. There is absolutely no reason why an underground station can not be built in the center of the village.
I would suggest at Grattan Park, being central and along the proposed tunnel allignement.

This issue is so important to the whole area that compromising on a bad station location would make the station itself unviable, and unsafe at night.
This is an underground line afterall and the station location should be in a busy built up area, no inbetween housing estates. Imagine the anti-social problems that would create for the residents?

Simple fact, underground stations shud be located on busy streets in built up areas. And to achieve this they need to be underground.
Mark N23/06/2009I think there is widespread support for an Inchicore station. And of course it makes sense to put that in the most accessible and safe location. The current location doesn't meet either of these requirements. But is the only option on offer from Irish Rail. You need to let your local T.D.'s and Councillors know your feelings on this. Irish Rail want to keep this development on their own land. Because that's the cheapest way to do it.
John Farrelly23/06/2009Assuming Irish Rail can meet some or all of the concerns of Residents of the CIE estate what is Inchicore on Track position on the location of the station?
Alan C23/06/2009I think there are 2 issues here. 1. The portal which IR now seem to be consulting well on with the people affected.
And 2. The station at inchicore.

It may seem to some that the proposed location of the station will benefit the housing estates beside it (kind of make up for the disruption of the portal), but I would seriously doubt this. A surface station in an industrial area in the middle of several housing estates sounds like a disaster to me, it will be plagued with anti-social problems and will be unsafe to use at night.
All of the other stations are being built underground with access from busy streets in built up areas. This proposed inchicore station would end up being associated with crime and anti-social activity in comparison to its underground sister stations.

This would give a very bad impression of Inchicore and would be a subject of regret for all. We really need this station to be in the center of the village and underground. I think it is in everyones interests to support this together and benefit together if its relocated.

For my 2c, I think Grattan Park is a perfect location for the station.
Local Resident24/06/2009I think that a station in Memorial Park or Grattan Park would be a rotten idea. Those parks should be preserved as parks. The proposal from Irish Rail involves the station being build in an industrial area, which will probably be partially re-developed. This is a great idea. That way the green space is preserved. Public access to a station in Memorial Park would be very limited. Any bulding of an underground station in Grattan Park or Inchicore village would we hugely disruptive to neighbouring residents, traffic and businesses (and probably be too expensive anyway). Irish Rails proposal of building the station in the CIE Works and the CIE Estate minimises the disruption to traffic, businesses and residents of the village. I would like the residents of the village to campaign for the station to be built in the CIE Works/CIE Estate and to be built at a point in the CIE Works that is as close as possible to the village.
Jo Homewood24/06/2009Please could anyone contributing to this thread be good enough to put their names to their contributions - if you have an opinion that you want to voice you should be able to let everyone know who you are, shouldn't you?
Mark N (Nutley)24/06/2009I can understand certain circumstances where somebody wishes to contribute an opinion but feel they need to do so anonymously. For instance, if they are critical of the project but are employed by Irish Rail or a company relying on Irish Rail for business. However, I think most of us can spot someone who is pretending to write from a personal perspective but is in fact an unnamed spokesperson for a particular organisation. It happens on these kind of forums, but they are easy to spot.
Paul Cullen24/06/2009 The rule on the site is that we would prefer people to use their names.

But if they don't, that's their business.

Messages will be removed if they infringe rules of good taste, legality, etc but not otherwise.
Local Resident25/06/2009That's sounds fair.
G. Ni Threabhair28/06/2009It would be short sighted not to locate the station underground in the centre of the village. Short term pain for long term gain.
Alan C19/07/2009I just read the Position Statement from Inchicore On Track and I am very impressed, the statement is clear and strong and shows a strong local voice for Irish Rail to reckon with.
Its reasonable and practical and is definitely a blueprint which can be used to find a final solution which would be mutually beneficial to everybody.

Well done
John Farrelly20/07/2009I am also very impressed with the Statement from Inchicore on Track, it ticks every box, congrats on whoever did that!
Alan C24/07/20099th July 2009 - Update on the current stage of the Interconnector project from Miister Dempsey in reply to a Dail question.

Tommy Broughan (Dublin North East, Labour)

Question 468: To ask the Minister for Transport if he will provide a full report on the Dublin rail interconnector; the stage that planning for the Rail Interconnector is at; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [29824/09]

Noel Dempsey (Minister, Department of Transport; Meath West, Fianna Fail)

The provision of increased capacity is a key consideration in determining investment priorities for public transport. Given their potential to greatly increase capacity on the public transport network, Metro North and the DART Underground (as the Interconnector is now known) are key projects.

The preliminary design of the DART Underground has been completed and work is currently underway on the scheme design, geo-technical investigation and preparation of an environmental impact study including a detailed archaeological report. A revised plan extending the tunnel to Inchicore emerged from this phase of the planning work. The revisions were presented to communities along the route in April 2009 in a series of public consultation meetings starting on 20th April in Kilmainham. Further public consultation will take place in the lead-up to the railway order application. Iarnród Éireann are planning to submit an application for a railway order to An Bord Pleanála by the end of 2009.

The start and completion dates of Transport 21 projects in planning, such as the DART Underground, will in each case be determined by the outcome of public consultation, the statutory planning approval process, the public procurement process and the availability of financial resources determined by the funding allocation available during the current difficult economic climate.