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Unread 12-05-2006, 16:44   #21
Thomas J Stamp
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That is a classic bridge Peter. There's one just like it in Palmerstown in dublin that no-one uses either.

You're right about the bridges in Portlaoise and Templemore, that's why I love them so much.
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Unread 15-05-2006, 12:17   #22
James Shields
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I was in Killiney over the weekend, so I got to try out the twin of the Blackrock and Booterstown bridges. It's a fair bit higher than the old bridges, presumably to allow the possibility of double decker trains in the future. You can see this from the big gap between the overhead lines and bridge floor. Naturally being higher, it requires more steps. I think the most offputting thing is that you have to make two 180 degree turns on the way up, and two more on the way down, which kind of interrupts your flow.

I think the double stairs would make sense if they made one up only and the other down only, though the two sets of stairs start from roughly the same point, so it wouldn't make things any easier for crowd control.
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Unread 15-05-2006, 12:33   #23
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Originally Posted by Mark Gleeson
For the record here is the maze in Blackrock

Attachment 101
That's the most messed-up thing I've ever seens Since its a two-stairs-in-one type of thing could they not have built one half accessable and the other straightforward?
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Unread 17-05-2006, 10:10   #24
Peter Turner
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I don't know why, maybe its just the angle the photo was taken at but I keep expecting there to be a diver jumping off the top and somersaulting into water below.
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Unread 17-12-2006, 15:08   #25
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How much did the new bridges cost? In my opinion they are ridiculous.
1.) They are quite slippery when wet
2.) They replaced a concrete (reinforced?) bridge with one made out of steel.
3.) All three new bridges are right beside the sea and they are going to have to constantly repaint them. They are already rusting in places!
4.) Why couldn't they have simply put in two lift shafts and a seperate bridge (like in Glenageary) and raised the height of the old bridges and added in a few more steps either side

I use the station in Blackrock several times a week. I don't have a digital camera so I can't show you pictures of the rust.
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Unread 17-12-2006, 15:48   #26
Mark Gleeson
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The original bridge in Blackrock had a hump in the middle and it wasn't even wide enough for two people to pass on comfortably so it wasn't suitable for wheelchairs or for a lift shaft addition as was done at Glenageary and Shankill which both had wide flat deck style bridges. It was common to see a queue onto the bridge in Blackrock something which has been eliminated by the new double stairs

The bridge in Blackrock was also sub standard in height compared to modern electrical standards, raising it was not an option since that would require demolition of part of the station (which is a grade 1 listed building and one of the oldest station buildings in Ireland) to fit in the staircase. The chosen design is about as compact as can be

There is are a heap of rules buried in the accessibility rules section M building regs 2000 which explain why there are so many landings on the stair cases why the steps are as they are. 25% of all rail users have a mobility impairment of some kind ranging from wheelchair users to people carrying heavy bags so the design of any new bridge must cover all

Killiney and Seapoint (3) all had steel or possible iron footbridges still in place until last year, Seapoint retains two they date from 1880 if not earlier, design life is taken as 100 years so they will last so the fact the replacement bridges are steel is not a issue, most of the decay on the remaining footbridges is attributed to poor standards when they where raised in the early 1980's as part of the DART project. IE had to abandon a like for like replacement in Seapoint in 2002 ish since a replacement bridge would not meet required planning standards
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Unread 17-12-2006, 21:53   #27
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Default Bridge design 101

I accept that building regulations need to be complied with and we would probably all be on here (well some of us) giving it loads if IE build non-accessable bridges, but here's my list of dumb things about the new DART bridges.

1) the design student charged with drawing the pictures forgot to include a gutter. Result - you cannot walk underneath *any* part of the bridge when it is raining without getting significant amounts of run-off on you. Normal bridges provide some element of shelter in bad weather - these ones make you wetter.

2) they are dangerously slippy when wet - I don't know what the building regs have to say on this, but I doubt they suggest having a flat surface where all the water can drip off passengers and sit on the bridge. Except for the bits that drip on to the waiting passengers (see 1, above) of course. I am not looking forward to seeing what they are like when it freezes (not for long beside the sea mind you, but it does happen).

3) IE decided to close the existing bridge in Booterstown (and took about 6 months or more to remove the huge Exit sign pointing to the closed bridge). The old bridge still functions as a bridge, but they closed it. If there is a health & safety concern with the old bridge perhaps they might think of closing the other half of the bridge that gives access to the beach. If there is no health & safety concern then perhaps they would re-open the thing. As it stands a significant number of able-bodied people save themselves several minutes by bunking over the low railing and walking over the old bridge anyway.

4) the lifts open right into the face of the sea breeze, and there is only partial shelter provided. Logic (perhaps not the building regs) would suggest you have the lift openings pointing inland, away from the storms, and provide shelter directly in front of the doors.

5) the bridge element itself is again only partially enclosed and so while you are now even higher and more exposed to the elements right by the sea you lose the solid enclosure of the old bridge and gain one that allows the wind and rain through. Right . . .

6) these bridges must have cost a bomb - I lost track of the amount of time spent assembling & tweaking them. At the time I remember doing a rough calculation about the labour hours that went into the bridge in Booterstown - something like a minimum of 2 years of labour hours, based on at least four blokes there every morning for 6 months. And of those four that I saw, two of them spent a significant amount of time carting all the equipment over the bridges (the new, non-working at the time ones) to the other side every single morning. Obviously the same procedure took place in reverse every evening. A *huge* waste of time & effort.

7) double decker trains . . . .puleeeeaze. Getting single deckers working efficiently seems to be beyond IE in many instances, so I don't hold out hope of double deckers any time soon. It would be good mind you, I just can't see it happening in Ireland in any kind of meaningful timescale.

Other than that they are grand bridges altogether.

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Unread 18-12-2006, 00:29   #28
James Shields
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I quite like the new bridges, though I have noticed they get quite slippery when it's wet too. Last I checked, this was the twenty-first century, so non-slip surfaces shouldn't be beyond the realm of current technology.

For about a hundred grand, I would happily come along an stick little rubberised Xs to the steps that should offer a bit more grip. And I bet that's a darn sight cheaper than their contractors would charge.

I do think that Blackrock, as one of the oldest stations in the country, could possibly have deserved something a little more fitting. It's a tricky one, though, as I'm not a fan of buildings designed to look like they're from a different era.

Last edited by James Shields : 18-12-2006 at 00:38.
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