Minister Ross announces massive investment across the transport, tourism and sports sectors

Friday 16 February 2018

Speaking today in Sligo Minister Ross said: “Since becoming a Minister one of my top priorities has been to get people and goods from A to B quickly, simply and cost effectively - with emphasis on quality, accessibility and the protection of our environment.”

“I am very happy that today, in this plan, my Department is putting its money where its mouth is. For instance, in the next few weeks we will be begin preparatory work on the new Metro Link, which will ultimately connect Swords to Sandyford, bringing rail access to the airport and beyond and complementing transport choices for the Greater Dublin Area as well as the country as a whole.”

“Major public transport items such as Bus Connects and projects like the Metro Link and expanded DART and Luas services will ease congestion, lower carbon output and add greatly to the quality and standard of our transport system.  Greenways and accessible sustainable transport is at the centre of our plans to enhance our travel network, support our valuable tourism industry and benefit every facet of Irish life.”

“As an island nation, facing into the uncertainties of Brexit, it is important that we join all the dots; that all our transport sectors feed into and complement each other. There can be no projects developed in isolation. Connectivity is the key – connecting more people to more places. For example, the N28 Cork to Ringaskiddy road will connect the new development of Port of Cork at Ringaskiddy with Cork City and the rest of the country.”

“We will be investing more than €8 billion in our road network over the next decade. Well maintained roads are safer roads. And keeping people safe on our roads, particularly in rural Ireland, is a paramount priority of mine.”

“A number of specific regional and local roads are to be progressed over the course of the plan such as the Sligo Western Distributor Road, Dingle relief road and appraisal of further projects such as R162 Navan to Kingscourt road, Tralee Northern relief road. We would also look to development the Inter-Urban network with the M20 Cork to Limerick Route a significant investment, and progressing further projects through pre-appraisal and early planning. Watch this space.”

“We will be focusing on investing in top class sporting facilities at local level for all of our people while at the same time expanding the range of world class facilities available to our elite athletes.  We will do this through the continuation of the Sports Capital Programme that benefits all counties and regions and growing Sports Campus Ireland.  We will also be making available the new large scale sports infrastructure fund. We will ensure that regional access is prioritised to complement our Tourism industry.  Measures will be delivered shortly to further support and expand our Tourism brands in the Regions, this will ensure economic activity and growth is dispersed through the whole country.”

Minister Ross concluded; “It’s not often that a Minister of such a vitally important Department as Transport, Tourism and Sport gets to deliver, not just a coherent, well-costed, joined up plan that takes the needs of the entire country into consideration, but also has the cash to deliver on it.”

“Today is a good day.”

Press Office, Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport, 01 604 1090 / 01 604 1093

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