Plans to improve Dublin’s transport links shelved for at least a decade

Plans to improve Dublin’s transport links shelved for at least a decade

THE PROPOSED MetroLink line – which was originally scheduled for completion in 2027 – has now had construction postponed until at least 2031, according to the National Transport Authority (NTA).

It has also been announced that the proposed Luas extension to Finglas will be postponed until 2031, while extensions to the DART running to Kilcock, Naas and Wicklow are now being pushed to after 2031.

This comes as the NTA announced that it is set to receive €25bn in capital over the next 20 years to improve and extend BusConnects, upgrade Luas and DART lines, as well as an making overall improvements to walking and cycling infrastructures.

The funding for MetroLink, however – which is set to cost an extra €10bn – has seemingly not materialised, and it is for this reason that construction is unlikely to take place for at least another decade.

This means that the projected completion of MetroLink is now 2037 – a full decade later than was originally planned.

Luas Finglas, meanwhile – which was set to be the first of the Luas extensions – was originally scheduled for completion by 2028. This has now been pushed to 2034.

Other Luas extensions which have been delayed until after 2031 are Poolbeg, Lucan, and Bray.

Planning work on eight proposed line extensions will face even longer delays, with 2042 being touted as possible dates for building.

These include Clongriffin, Balgriffin, Tyrellstown, Blanchardstown, Clondalkin, Kimmage, Knocklyon, and UCD/Sandyford.

The lofty strategy claims to be able to reduce car traffic on Dublin roads from 58% to 49%, despite projected figures of a population increase of half a million between 2016 and 2042.

The NTA aims to achieve this by increasing public transport usage by 63%, thus contributing to a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 69% over the same period.

The Eastern Bypass which was first touted during the 1970s as a way of linking both ends of the M50 is now – after 50 years – officially ‘not proceeding’.

The NTA insists that all plans within the strategy have followed rigorous public consultation, having received upwards of 4,000 responses, with 90% of that number wanting to see an overall reduction in the amount of private car usage.

Public consultation on the current draft opening is open now until 17 December.