ADDITIONAL funding of €6.4million from the Department of Transport will enable Iarnród Éireann to complete the renewal of track on the Limerick to Ballybrophy rail line later this year.
A further 9.5 miles of track renewal will be completed in two tranches between now and July 31 and between September 26 and November 20.
The completed track renewal works will allow Iarnród Éireann to improve journey times towards the end of this year and facilitate further improvements in the future. It will also bring to a close significant disruption caused by track renewal work.
Transport Minister Eamon Ryan said that one of his key focuses was the regeneration and improvement of rural public transport, linking towns and villages to nearby cities and hubs, in this case Limerick, making it easier for people to choose public transport for work, shopping or leisure.
“This announcement comes on the back of the launch of the Limerick Shannon Metropolitan Transport Strategy, a major new travel blueprint which will see an overhaul of bus and rail services, as well as the development of active travel routes throughout the area.
“Public transport is rising to meet the huge economic potential of the Midwest region. I would also like to acknowledge the many local groups who have campaigned for this line, effectively, patiently and with understandable passion. The wait is over, the work is starting and the finish line is imminent,” Minister Ryan added
Iarnród Éireann chief executive Jim Meade said that as well as securing the line for generations to come, the completion of track renewal will deliver better journey times, and provide the foundations for further service improvements.
“We know our customers and the communities we serve feel real ownership of this rail line and service, and we look forward to working with them to enable more people to choose rail.”