In advance of the first public consultation on DART + West in Autumn 2020, Irish Rail carried out two stages of ‘Multi Criteria Analysis’ (MCA) to arrive at their decision that a road bridge through Riverwood Court / Stationcourt, and an additional pedestrian/cyclist bridge at the site of the existing level crossing, were their ’emerging preferred option’ for Coolmine Level Crossing.
The images below (prepared by Irish Rail) give an indication of the appearance and location of the proposed bridges:
What other options were considered?
MCA Stage 1
The first stage of the MCA compared a ‘do nothing’ option (keeping Coolmine Level Crossing open as it is now), a ‘do minimum’ option (closing the crossing), and eight other options, as follows:
1: A bridge over the train line and canal at the existing site of the level crossing
2: An online underbridge with opening canal bridge
3: A bridge connecting St Mochta’s Grove/Stationcourt to Riverwood Court with another bridge for pedestrians and cyclists at the station
4: An underbridge connecting St Mochta’s Grove to Luttrellpark Road
5: An underbridge connecting St Mochta’s Grove to Luttrellpark Road with a diversion of the canal
6: A bridge to the east of Coolmine Road, at the site of the existing station
7: Providing a pedestrian/cycle bridge with no provision for motor traffic
8: Lowering the railway vertical alignment
MCA Stage 2
For the second stage of the MCA, Irish Rail compared Option 1, Option 3, Option 4 and Option 6. On the basis of MCA 2 they determined that Option 3, the bridge through Riverwood Court, was their ’emerging preferred option’.
More information on the MCA process
An explanation of the multi criteria analysis process and Irish Rail’s rationale for choosing Option 3 as their emerging preferred option is available in The Preliminary Options Selection Report: Main. That document provides images and information about Coolmine MCA 1 on pages 133-143 and Coolmine MCA 2 on pages 166-167.
You can find detail on the factors that Irish Rail considered when comparing each option for MCA 1 and 2 in the annexes to Preliminary Options Selection Report: Main which are available (with other relevant material) on the Irish Rail website.
Please note that the Irish Rail documents mentioned above provide information about the entire DART+ project. This means information about Coolmine Level Crossing can be difficult to locate. To make relevant information easier to find and read, we have provided extracts from some of those documents below:
- Extract from Annex 9.3B Stage 1 MCA Level Crossing matrices
- Extract from Annex 9.3B Stage 2 MCA Level Crossing matrices
- Extract from Level Crossings Options Drawings
Details of other relevant studies are also available on the Irish Rail website, notably Maynooth Line Transport Study Draft Final Report, which looks at the impact of different options for Coolmine Level Crossing on traffic in the area.
You may also find the FAQs page on the DART + West project useful. You can also contact the Irish Rail Public Liaison Officer if you have further questions by phone or email as follows:
It is important that Irish Rail make decisions for Coolmine Level Crossing based on accurate and objective research. Residents and public representatives have already raised concerns about errors and omissions evident in the documents published by Irish Rail to date. For more detail, please see our advice for submissions on the first public consultation webpage.
Other Useful Information
What happens next?
The second non-statutory public consultation on DART+ West will close on 29 September 2021.
Thereafter, Irish Rail will submit their plans for DART + West to An Bord Pleanála as part of the Railway Order application process. A statutory public consultation will then take place.
You can find more information about the statutory public consultation process on the website of An Bord Pleanála by following this link.
Fingal Development Plan
The Fingal Development Plan includes two local objective points: ‘Preserve the existing pedestrian and vehicular right of way at the Coolmine Level Crossing’, and ‘Prohibit any road bridge’ across the train line and canal at Riverwood/Station Court (Sheet 13 Blanchardstown South Local Objective Points No. 141 & No. 142).
It is also worth noting the zoning objectives for the green open spaces affected by the ’emerging preferred option’ are to ‘Preserve and provide for open space and recreational amenities’, with a view to providing ‘recreational and amenity resources for urban and rural populations subject to strict development controls. Only community facilities and other recreational uses will be considered and encouraged by the Planning Authority’. The site of the proposed road bridge will also be in a ‘highly sensitive landscape area’.
See the Fingal Development Plan Viewer for more information.
Aspects of Irish Rail’s plans for Coolmine Level Crossing conflict with the Fingal Development Plan. We also raised concerns that the Kellystown Draft Local Area Plan and Kellystown Road Scheme undermined local objective points of the Fingal Development Plan that are relevant to Irish Rail’s DART + West plan. You can find out more about this on our dedicated webpage by following this link.
The Riverwood Residents Association subgroup has been meeting with local representatives about Irish Rail’s plans. The subgroup has had on-site meetings with Deputies Paul Donnelly, Roderic O’Gorman and Jack Chambers, Senator Emer Currie and Councillors Pamela Conroy, John Walsh and Howard Mahony. The subgroup also arranged an online meeting with An Tánaiste Leo Varadkar.
You can contact public representatives to express your concerns about Irish Rail’s DART + Plans, the Kellystown LAP and the Kellystown Road Scheme.
- Jack Chambers – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Pamela Conroy – email@example.com
- Emer Currie – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Paul Donnelly – email@example.com
- Ted Leddy – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Howard Mahony – email@example.com
- Roderic O’Gorman – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Natalie Treacy – email@example.com
- Leo Varadkar – firstname.lastname@example.org
- John Walsh – email@example.com
Pre-2020 statements and press about local level crossing closures
- Leo Varadkar, ‘PORTERSTOWN LEVEL CROSSING’, 4 Feb. 2014
- ‘Backup Porterstown Claims, says O’Gorman’, Dublin Gazette, 20 Feb. 2014
- Ted Leddy, ‘NO PLANS TO CLOSE COOLMINE LEVEL CROSSING’, 29 Mar. 2014
- Roderic O’Gorman, ‘Freedom of Information request on Coolmine level crossing’, 17 May 2014
Reasons to be optimistic
- ‘Bord Pleanála must pay Dalkey residents costs of challenge over Bullock Harbour development – Pat Kenny‘, Irish Independent, 31 July 2020.
- ‘Plan for High Rise Development… Quashed’, Irish Times, 23 July 2020.
- ‘Merrion Gates closure plan shelved’, Irish Times, 4 Jun. 2018.
- ‘Scrapped Bridge Plans is Victory for Lucan Community’, Echo.ie, 13 Nov. 2017.