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Rail Procurement Agency


RPA, as part of their function, submits an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), as required, to An Bord Pleanala for the development of rail projects. An EIS comprises up to 2000 pages, over five or six books, outlining the existing status of a tract of land and then the environmental impact that a rail development will have on that land. The EIS is made up of text, tables, photography, maps and drawings. Principle's graphic design team were commissioned to design, typeset and create artwork for the next four EIS submissions.

Documents of this size and detail not only require aesthetic design but also require functional design, given the expectations on the reader to digest detailed information.

Our brief was to create at an overall design style for all EIS and create a style standard for page layouts text, tables and imagery, typeset and layout each EIS, creating finished art for print, DVD and internet versions.

The main design challenge was in the body of the EIS. We needed to create a layout that would be easy to read, giving type space to breathe while not overrunning the document beyond its desired size. We were conscious of the number of words per page we would achieve by any given layout and designed numerous options for consideration that balanced readability, space and word count. For example, a 10% reduction in words per page could add 200 pages to overall EIS. As a result of this process we found the optimum solution.

There are hundreds of tables in each EIS for which we designed a format. These considerations are the detail necessary in such large productions to facilitate delivery.

To facilitate effective project management, we created a proofing, revision and approval system to track files between RPA and ourselves.

Railway Order submissions have immovable deadlines and require us meet them at all costs and at any time. Therefore, the creative investment we made at the beginning of this process allowed us to typeset and manage these documents with relative ease, staying ahead of our client in production, meeting deadlines and alleviating unnecessary pressure.

In June 2010, RPA submitted the Railway Order application for Luas Broombridge, an extension of the green line from St. Stephens Green to Broombridge which was given full permission and the Government green light in Autumn 2012.

In October 2010, RPA submitted the Railway Order application for Metro West, a light rail line running from Tallaght to Dublin Airport.