Dublin transport to improve next month
Transport in Dublin, particularly public transport, is set to improve next month with the completion of Irish Rail's Kildare Route Project, the completion of the Macken Street Bridge, and the opening of the Luas extension to the docklands.
The Kildare Route Project involves increasing capacity between Heuston Station and Hazelhatch in Co Kildare from two rail lines to four. It will provide for the separation of local services from inter-city services and allow for much greater frequency, with a doubling of the number of trains from Hazelhatch, Sallins, Newbridge and Kildare into Dublin.
Irish Rail's chief executive Dick Fearn gave the news of the project's completion to members of Dublin Chamber at a breakfast meeting this morning. The work has been ongoing since mid 2007.
Referring to the recent difficulties with the Malahide viaduct and the landslides on the Rosslare line, Mr Fearn said they showed the company was "well able to deal with these things professionally and successfully".
Corporate services director of the Railway Procurement Agency, Ger Hannon said the Luas extension to the Docklands would also open early next month.
Stops will be provided at George's Dock, Mayor Square, Spencer Dock and The Point.
Dublin City Council's Tim Brick said the new Macken Street, or "Samuel Beckett", bridge will also open in the first two weeks of December. A spokesman later explained the bridge would open to sightseers on December 10th and to motorists on December 11th.
From today, the bus gate at College Green will be temporarily lifted in the evenings to allow private cars pass through to the O'Connell Street area during peak evening hours, to cover the Christmas shopping period and January sales.
Dublin City councillors voted earlier this month to suspend the ban on private cars passing through the area during peak evening hours for two months.
Next month will also see the resumption of the inquiry into proposals for Metro North and the setting up of the Dublin Transportation Authority which will immediately become part of a National Transportation Authority.
Early next year further improvements around the country are expected with the completion of motorways between Dublin and the regional cities, the opening of the M3 motorway to the Meath/Cavan border and the resumption of rail services to Dunboyne.