N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

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JBK
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N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by JBK » Tue Jul 28, 2009 09:24

A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates
I know there are a number of posts that relate to this roads project but I thought I would start one relating specifically to progress. I attended the public display at Omagh yesterday and I was shocked at how many people were there. The car park was packed and there was a queue out the door. Anyway, I got a chance to talk to the Mouchel road designers. They have a different team for each of the three sections.

Junction designs have not been finalised but this is the indications they gave to me.
It starts with a short (1km) single carriageway bypass of New Buildings which finishes on a roundabout on the Strabane side of this village. From here it will be 2+2 carriage way with no LILOs or central reservation crossing to Stanbane at a roundabout and onto its end at another roundabout on the Armagh road out of Aughnacloy. Another short single carriageway road will link this roundabout to the existing N2 and bridge at the border. The existing A5 will be left as it is on its entirety.

The junctions are not complete yet but are more than likely going to be grade separated. They would not indicate if these grades would be compact or otherwise. The reason they went round the east side of Aughnacloy was mostly down to a significant Archaeological feature to the west (called the Thistle). The reason they have kept so close to Omagh is to encourage use of the new road.

The most interesting section of this road (From an engineering point of view) is as I expected around Strabane. The road will come in along side the existing phase 1 bypass and straight trough the Traveller halting site, rise over the existing Lifford link and pass over a new bridge over the river. It will travel a short distance along the bank to a new roundabout where the new Lifford link will join in. The new Lifford link will have a roundabout on the other side of the river where the new N15/N15 will join.

Also in Strabane they will have some sort of junction at the existing Lifford link road, so when finished they will have two junctions within 500m of each other. I’m not convinced they are doing a very good job of designing what will be a major junction in the years to come at Strabane. Once the maps are on the A5WTC website I will discuss this further.

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nirs
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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by nirs » Tue Jul 28, 2009 12:10

I agree that a decent link with the N14/15 is essential. Ideally freeflow, or at the very least future proofed for freeflow.

Going through a traveller halting site will cause a lot of problems for the council. I'm sure it took years to get planning permission for that one!
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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by JBK » Wed Jul 29, 2009 21:05

I have drawn a free flow junction. What do people think?

Image

http://www.boards.ie/vbulletin/showthre ... st61370584

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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by nirs » Wed Jul 29, 2009 21:48

Are you making the A5 into at TOTSO at that location? I'd have to check the figures but I'd have thought more traffic would go Dublin->L'Derry than Dublin->Letterkenny.
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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by JBK » Thu Jul 30, 2009 08:40

The indications the designers gave me at the open day in Omagh was that they will be putting a roundabout where I have a trumpet. I would sooner have the priority on the A5 rather than the way I have it to the N14 but the route is now decided and Im not sure how easy it is to fit a free flow junction with the nasty bend in the route they have chosen.

Also if the N14/N15 junction was a roundabout juction with a N14 priority with a trumpet on the Stranbane side then could'nt the designers save a junction at the existing Lifford road and let Strabane traffic enter the town via the existing Lifford/Strabane bridge?

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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by murphaph » Thu Jul 30, 2009 12:58

That sharp bend really only lends itself to the TOTSO JBK has suggested. Would be silly to try to force the A5 to hae the mainline when it has to negotiate such a sharp bend anyway.

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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by nirs » Thu Jul 30, 2009 13:03

I'm disappointed by the layout there, and if that map is really how it's planned JBK is right that a TOTSO is the only way to freeflow it. It looks like the new road will sport an at-grade roundabout smack in the middle of the route. What a shame.
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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by JBK » Thu Jul 30, 2009 13:48

I talked to the engineer in th National Roads Design Office in Donegal town this morning and he described to me the detail of the N14/N15 temination at Lifford and how it will be a large roundabout. So the reality is that the A5 - N14/N15 link will be two roundabouts, one either side of the River Finn. Im not certain of the traffic volumes but it will be large, Im sure, at this point with little potential for future growth.

Only thing is that with the trumpet I have drawn, is that it will be relatively easy to upgrade this juction when ever it might be required.

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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by Enceladus » Mon Aug 03, 2009 00:40

So if I understand correctly, the new A5 route will not run online along the A5 between Aughnacloy and Ballygawley, right?

Doesn't that therefore mean that the Tullyvar realignment, under construction at present, on the current A5 will essentially be a waste of money? :shock: :(
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DLR
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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by DLR » Mon Aug 03, 2009 11:42

When can we expect to see detailed junction layouts?

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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by loch_cuan73 » Mon Aug 03, 2009 13:24

DLR wrote:When can we expect to see detailed junction layouts?
I'd be interested to see if there is going to be a proper connection to the new A4 - at least north to east & vice versa movements should be catered for with free flow links. The under-construction link from the end of the A4 dual-carriageway across the existing A5 to the existing A4 west of Ballygawley seems a bit low-spec on the ground (single carriageway).

Alas, I fear we'll be stuck with an at-grade roundabout on the A4.

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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by dantheman » Tue Aug 04, 2009 09:39

loch_cuan73 wrote:
DLR wrote:When can we expect to see detailed junction layouts?
I'd be interested to see if there is going to be a proper connection to the new A4 - at least north to east & vice versa movements should be catered for with free flow links. The under-construction link from the end of the A4 dual-carriageway across the existing A5 to the existing A4 west of Ballygawley seems a bit low-spec on the ground (single carriageway).

Alas, I fear we'll be stuck with an at-grade roundabout on the A4.
There may(!) be a flyover for the A5, but it looks like the A4 will indeed terminate at a roundabout :roll:

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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by dantheman » Tue Aug 04, 2009 09:40

Enceladus wrote:So if I understand correctly, the new A5 route will not run online along the A5 between Aughnacloy and Ballygawley, right?

Doesn't that therefore mean that the Tullyvar realignment, under construction at present, on the current A5 will essentially be a waste of money? :shock: :(
Yes looks that way

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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by nirs » Sat Aug 08, 2009 19:24

Yes, if the A5 gets built on timetable the Tullyvar realignment will probably be one of the least cost-effective improvement schemes in NI in recent years, being in use for less than ten years. But, of course, several lives could be saved in those years and there's still no guarantee that the A5 will be built.

I sent an e-mail to the A5WTC folks asking about the A4 junction and they just said that they would be thinking quite a lot about how that one would work. It may also involve extending the dualled part of the A4 dual-carriageway another kilometre from its soon-to-be terminus at Ballygawley to the route of the new A5.
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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by Enceladus » Sun Aug 30, 2009 22:44

Looking at the new photos linked on NIRS's website, it looks like at least a part of the A5 Tullyvar realignment will be dual carriageway! :) Can anyone confirm this?
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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by nirs » Mon Aug 31, 2009 07:56

Enceladus - I can see what you mean, but as far as I know the standard for the cutting is 2+1. This standard in Northern Ireland is normally built just by painting 3 lanes on the road. So what we're looking at in that photo is either (a) a central barrier, never seen on a 2+1 here before or (b) a random long, thin section of road not yet surfaced for some reason. What we DO know is that Tullyvar will definitely not be utilised for the new A5 WTC.

EDIT: I've just spent some time checking that pic. It's definitely in the Roads Service document entitled "A5 at Tullyvar". But I'm starting to wonder... is it? It looks similar to some of the views on the upgraded A4 nearby. I wonder have they got mixed up? That would be another explanation for what Enceladus noticed.
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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by dantheman » Mon Aug 31, 2009 09:13

nirs wrote:EDIT: I've just spent some time checking that pic. It's definitely in the Roads Service document entitled "A5 at Tullyvar". But I'm starting to wonder... is it? It looks similar to some of the views on the upgraded A4 nearby. I wonder have they got mixed up? That would be another explanation for what Enceladus noticed.
I thought it was the link from the new road to the Ballygawley roundabout

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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by nirs » Fri Sep 04, 2009 15:50

nirs wrote:Yes, if the A5 gets built on timetable the Tullyvar realignment will probably be one of the least cost-effective improvement schemes in NI in recent years, being in use for less than ten years. But, of course, several lives could be saved in those years and there's still no guarantee that the A5 will be built.
I was at a meeting a week or two ago where Roads Service where asked why they proceeded with the A5 Tullyvar realignment, even though at that point they knew it would not be needed. They said that the land had already been vested, but the main reason was that the DBFO2 contract had already been signed. The DBFO2 contract includes the A1 at Newry, the four GSJs on the A1, the A4 dualling, the Annaghilla realignment and the Tullyvar realignment. They said that there had been price changes since the contract was signed, and removing the Tullyvar scheme from the contract would have meant nullifying the existing contract, which the contractor would then have been able to re-negotiate it at a higher cost to Roads Service. So they calculated that it was actually CHEAPER to let an unnecessary scheme go ahead, than to halt it.

I can understand those reasons, but surely consideration also has to be given to the unnecessary environmental cost, and social cost to the landowners, of proceeding with the scheme?
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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by nirs » Mon Nov 16, 2009 10:12

In a Written Answer in the Assembly on Friday, the Minister gave the following costs for the preferred route of this scheme:

• Section 1 (north) - £383m
• Section 2 (middle) - £385m
• Section 3 (south) - £342m

Add these together and you get a total cost of £1.11 billion! :shock:

Now, the Republic of Ireland is (planning to) contribute £400m to the scheme, leaving Stormont to find £711m, a feat which I find it utterly impossible to believe will happen any time soon.

Despite this, the Minister went on to estimate the total cost of the scheme as "£650m - £850m". :?

The explanation for this cost reduction? "consideration of risk as well as the efficiencies and savings which materialise as the scheme design develops". :laugh: In other words, they're planning to cut at least £260m off the budget through efficiencies and other savings. How often in road building does THAT happen?
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Re: N.IRL: A5 Derry Dual Carriageway Progress updates

Post by Cian » Mon Nov 16, 2009 12:28

...is he by any chance spinning the Stormont side of the price as the 'total cost' there? 650-850 + 400 = about right.

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