EU funding secured for Luas link-up in Dublin

AUDIO: Minister says project will be completed by 2017

The government has secured funding from the European Investment Bank (EIB) for Luas link up project in Dublin. The plan will see the meeting of the Red and Green lines as well as carrying the line further north to link with the Connolly-Maynooth rail line.

The estimated loan of €163 million from the EIB which is just under half of the cost of the development. It will be repaid at a lower rate of interest saving the country and taxpayer more than €30 million.

800 jobs will be created in the construction phase of the project, while 60 permanent positions will be created on completion. Work on constructing the new line started in May, with the main construction works due to begin in 2015.

The 'BXD' line will run from the city centre to the Irish Rail stop at Broombridge on the north-side of Dublin and will also link the existing Red and Green lines.

Funding for the project has been included in the capital allocations under the Infrastructure and Capital Investment 2012-2016 plan of government.

The project is scheduled for completion in late 2017.

The Cabinet approved an updated business plan last November for the €370 million project. Transport Minister Leo Varadkar told Breakfast here on Newstalk he is hopeful it will stick to that budget.