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Former Limerick-Tralee line footage

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Really interesting video. It brough back many memories as I travelled on that RPSI tour behind 186 in 1972. 

The dedication that this group of people have shown over the last 40 years really is amazing.

It also shows just how powerful the farming/ landowner lobby is and how negligent CIE have been in preserving the right of way for the state.

I am probably in the minority here but I am a great beliver in the economic and social  benifits of greenways.

I see no justification for rebuilding the line to Foynes. Ireland is just too small for rail freight other that a few specific freight flows which are completly dependent on the location of a small number of factories.

At the moment we have concentrates in containers from Ballina to Waterford, timber from Mayo to Waterford, Botox from Castlebar? Tara Mines? 

CIE had a network of container gantries all over the Island but transhipment costs killed the market.

Why are we fixated in investing in a form of transport that is 200 years old. Why not think outside the box?

At the moment most freight in an out of Ireland travels to and from Europe in standard articulated trailers which are rolled on and off ferries by special tractors. A road tractor delivers the trailers to and from the port. They are currely building a huge number of storage bays in Rosslare for holding the trailers before pickup or after drop off.

Why not move the ports inland?

My sugestion would be dedicated carriagways for transporting standard articulated trailers from ports to an inland hubs. Instead of diesel trucks the tractors would be unmanned electrical vehicles, powered by low voltage electricity (not batteries) similar to luas trams. The trailers could be transferred direct from the boat to the system.

The carriageway could be single width with passing places to minimise construction costs. The whole lot would be controlled by AI to maximise efficiency and reduce energy consumption. While it would not be quite as efficient as steel on steel for that part of the journey, the benifits of a single mode of transport from factory to port and vise versa would far outweigh the extra energy costs which would still be green electricity so no additional carbon.

Perhaps the line from Rosslare to Waterford could be converted to trial out the system?

There is no reason why the network could not be extended to include city suburb  to city suburb carriagways.


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