Calls for Government to speed up Metro North project

The project is currently not expected to be completed until 2026 or 2027

Calls for Government to speed up Metro North project

Map of the new Metro North system | Image: NTA

Dublin Chamber of Commerce has welcomed reports that the Government is considering speeding up the Metro North project.

Speeding up the light rail project by two years is reported to be one of the options on the table as the Government sets out a midterm review of its capital investment programme.

According to the programme published in 2015, the project would be finished in 2026/2027, with construction only beginning in 2021.

According to The Irish Times, there is €2.6 billion in funding that has not yet been allocated to a specific project, and the matter is set to be discussed at today's Cabinet meeting.

The proposed Metro North service would run from St Stephens Green through Ballymun, under the Airport and then on to Swords.

Significant stretches of the route would be underground or in tunnels, with some above ground stops as well.

Journey time from O'Connell Street to Dublin Airport would be 19 minutes, and the plans suggest there could be upwards of 30 trams an hour.

In a statement, Dublin Chamber of Commerce welcomed the news that speeding up the project is being considered, suggesting it has the potential 'transform public transport in Dublin'.

Dublin Chamber CEO Mary Rose Burke said: "Speeding up the construction of Metro North would send a clear signal to the people and businesses of Dublin - and also workers and companies looking to locate here in light of Brexit - that Ireland is serious about addressing the current infrastructure deficits that threaten to stifle growth.

"The lack of a rail link between the city and the Airport is proving a deterrent to companies moving jobs and business to Ireland," she added.