Written Answers. - Reopening of Aghalane Bridge.

Bertie Ahern

Question:

54 Mr. B. Ahern asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs when the Aghalane Bridge and the Northern Ireland Border crossing is scheduled to be reopened. [3956/97]

On my instructions, the matter of the reopening of Aghalane Bridge and the portion of the crossing in question which lies in Northern Ireland has been raised with the British authorities through the Anglo-Irish secretariat. In response, those authorities have stated that work is due to begin during April 1997, but is not expected to be completed before the end of the year at the earliest.

Responsibility for reopening the portion of the route in question which lies in this jurisdiction rests with the National Roads Authority. They have advised that preliminary earthworks at the site are in progress and are nearing completion. Tenders for the main works are expected to be invited by Cavan County Council in the coming weeks. I am informed that these works include the balance of the earthworks required, as well as culverting, paving and other works. It is anticipated that they will be under way by late spring of this year and that they will be completed in mid-1998.