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Road Projects

Dáil Éireann Debate, Thursday - 4 November 2021

Thursday, 4 November 2021

Questions (173)

Niamh Smyth


173. Deputy Niamh Smyth asked the Minister for Transport the status of the east west link which is urgently needed in the north east; the most recent engagements his Department has made on this project; the persons or bodies engaged with; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [53475/21]

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Written answers (Question to Transport)

Proposals to deliver an upgraded East-West route linking Dundalk to Sligo, taking in Cavan, involve linking elements of the national road network and regional roads along as direct a route as possible. Essentially the route involves upgrade/realignment works on the regional routes from Dundalk to Cavan and on national routes from Cavan to Sligo.

As regards the regional road aspect of the proposal, the improvement and maintenance of regional and local roads is the statutory responsibility of the relevant local authority in accordance with the provisions of Section 13 of the Roads Act 1993. Works on those roads are funded from the Council's own resources supplemented by State road grants.

My Department provided funding to Cavan County Council (acting as lead authority with Monaghan and Louth County Councils) with over €2m in the period 2007-2014 to progress the regional road element of the project to preliminary design.

In light of subsequent appraisal work that pointed to a very substantial cost if the full route were to be upgraded, the Department engaged with Cavan County Council in relation to carrying out a risk-based analysis for the east-west route between Dundalk and Cavan. A report on this analysis is expected shortly and future options in relation to the route will then be considered, taking into account funding availability.

As regards the national road element of an east-west link, I have referred the question to Transport Infrastructure Ireland for a direct reply. Please advise my private office if you do not receive a reply within 10 working days.