Tuesday, 15 May 2018

Ceisteanna (496)

Pearse Doherty

Ceist:

496. Deputy Pearse Doherty asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport his plans to extend the rail link from County Sligo to County Donegal; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [20949/18]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Transport)

Currently there are no plans to extend the rail network from County Sligo to County Donegal.

Building on the recommendations in the recent Public Investment Management Assessment study and the findings set out in the Rail Review 2016, a continuing key priority for investment in transport under the NDP is to protect the quality of and the investment already made in the existing national rail system, by funding projects that support and maintain safety and service levels in railway operations.

It is also a core priority under the National Planning Framework to enhance and upgrade accessibility between urban centres of population and their regions, in parallel with the initiation of compact growth of urban centres.

Under the National Development Plan (NDP), there is an objective is to complete the improving road linkages so that every region, particularly those in the North-West, are linked to Dublin by a high quality road network. Furthermore, another major objective is to make substantial progress in linking our regions and urban areas not just to Dublin but to each other. The NDP also recognises that over the period of the Plan it will be very important to examine the role inter-urban rail network can play in enhancing regional connectivity.

As part of the Estimates process, the multi-annual capital allocations will be reviewed and extended annually on a rolling basis to cover the coming 5 year period. This will provide Government with an annual opportunity to review the allocations in light of any implementation issues arising and/or new priorities which may emerge during implementation of the NDP. The NDP also commits to a full mid-term review of the Plan in 2022 to allow Government take stock of progress and allow it to review and reaffirm its investment priorities.