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Journal 191  - Infrastructure


Dublin-Howth There have been Saturday night PWD operations using hired contractors' plant assisted by spoil trains to install drainage piping and catchpits in the Raheny-Harmonstown section. This is to coincide with the sections of relaying that were done during April 2016.

On the nights of Saturday July 2 and Sunday 3 July, the section of plain track on the Up Road between the crossovers on the approach to Howth station was renewed. New track panels were brought out to the site on a panel train along with fresh ballast in spoil wagons, some of which were stockpiled by the lineside for later use, due to the difficulty in bringing ballast into Howth by road. The combined spoil and panel train was worked by locomotive 086 and ran out on the Down road to Howth. The locomotive then stopped short of the crossovers, unhooked, crossed over and returned light-engine to Howth Junction on the Up road, before crossing over to the Down road and heading back towards Howth to hook up to the train again.

Drogheda Panel relaying was carried out through Platform 2 in Drogheda on the weekends of 2/3 and 16/17 July. Spoil trains were used during the excavations on the Saturday nights. Fresh ballast was stockpiled in advance in the wide six-foot in Drogheda Station, discharged using the HOBS train. This was due to the difficulty in bringing ballast into Drogheda by road. 

Dublin-Cork Spoil trains were working mid-week nights, 5-8 September, doing site preparation work for the ballast cleaning project on the Cork Line. The work included excavating away parts of cutting slopes to create space to allow temporary side-casting of ballast cleaning spoil. Ballast cleaning re-commenced on the Down line between MPs (mileposts) 20 and 21½ on Saturday 10 September

Dublin-Sligo As part of a programme of inspection of post-tensioned concrete bridges, intrusive investigations were carried out by a specialist contractor to overbridge OBS467 (Lamagh Bridge) near Newtownforbes. This was done on nights of 16-20 August using hired contractors' rail-mounted plant for access.


Grand Canal Dock From 05:00 on Monday 18 July 2016, Phase 3, Stage 9, of the City Centre Re-Signalling Project was commissioned at Grand Canal Dock Station. The accompanying drawings cover the area from the north end of Tara Street Station to the north end of Sandymount platforms and reproduced by permission of Iarnród Éireann.

The Up main line through Platform 2 was disconnected at the Lansdowne Road end of Grand Canal Dock Station. The Up main from Lansdowne Road was slewed and permanently connected to the previously dead-end track at Platform 1, in advance of Stop Signal DC44. The line through Platform 1 was reclassified as the Up main line. A new buffer stop signal, No. DC446, was permanently installed at the Lansdowne Road end of Platform 2. This platform was re-designated as a terminus platform with a length, between the top of the ramps, of 174 metres. It should be noted that the Up through siding is not available to trains carrying passengers and all EMU stock is prohibited from entering this siding.


Clongriffin The car park beside Clongriffin station has been operated for a number of years on a free parking but no supervision basis. It is not under the control of Irish Rail. In June, management was taken over by Quickpark, who are now using it as a cheap alternative car park for Dublin Airport, directed at people who wish to leave their cars for a protracted period while abroad. A half-hourly shuttle bus runs to the Airport, but it unclear if it will also convey passengers arriving at Clongriffin by train. From April 2001, a bus service operated from Howth Junction to Dublin Airport under the AerDart brand. It was was discontinued with effect from 21 March 2007 in the face of falling passenger numbers (final trips ran on Sunday 20 March)


The remainder of this article appears in IRRS Journal number 191, published October 2016

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Revised: May 19, 2017 .