LIMERICK Sinn Féin TD Maurice Quinlivan has called for urgent action from Government on the Coonagh to Knockalisheen Road Scheme to ensure the road is delivered as soon as possible.
Deputy Quinlivan has deemed the latest parliamentary response from Transport Minister Eamon Ryan to a query from him on the matter as “disturbing”.
Replying to the Limerick City TD in the Dáil last week, Minister Ryan explained that Limerick City and County Council, as required under the Public Spending Code, has submitted a recommendation regarding the award of a contract for the construction of the main scheme and he is “considering the project at present”.
The Limerick Sinn Féin politician hit back saying that the Minister “seems he is trying to abandon the Northside of Limerick”.
“The response I received form the Green Party Minister is particularly disappointing. This project should be delivered as soon as possible. Contractors are in place and could literally start the work on this critical piece of infrastructure in the next few weeks,” he told the Limerick Post.
Deputy Quinlivan also said that the Coonagh to Knockalisheen Road has, according to the Construction Information Service, had its start date changed at least 15 times since 2012.
“Limerick City and County Council has received tenders for the final phase of construction of the Coonagh to Knockalisheen Road. After years of delay the road construction was scheduled to commence in September 2020.
“The works, which includes the development of a 2.2km dual carriageway with footways, cycle ways, verges and two railway over bridges, is a key element of the Limerick Regeneration programme.
“We now see that, it is obvious that the Green Party are the only obstacle to starting this project. The Green Party, for whatever reasons, want to delay the building of this critical piece of infrastructure,” Deputy Quinlivan claimed.
He also maintains that the Coonagh to Knockalisheen Road would not just open up the Moyross area, but the whole of the northside of Limerick and parts of East Clare.
“It would give those areas increased proximity to Shannon Airport with its industrial estate. This connectivity would be key to bringing in new investment and jobs to Limerick. It could be, as everyone knows, a game changer for communities in the area.
“I am calling for Minister Ryan to pull his finger out and stop considering the project as for years this project has been considered, amended, adapted, talked about, promised but not delivered on.
“Failure to act will not be acceptable. The time for consideration has long passed, we need action, we need it now or this will quickly become the road to nowhere.”