Fianna Fáil Press Office
Senator Darragh O’Brien
18 February 2016
Donohue offers Metro Lite for North Dublin – O’Brien
Fianna Fáil candidate for Dublin Fingal Senator Darragh O’Brien has described the revised Metro North project as ‘Metro Lite’ and half what was originally promised to the people of the area.
Speaking following the launch of Fianna Fáil’s Transport Policy document A Better Deal For Commuters, Senator O’Brien said the revised Metro North project, as announced by Minister Paschal Donohue was dramatically different with half the capacity originally proposed.
“Today’s Luas strike has once again highlighted the importance of public transport to the people who live and work in Dublin. The Metro North project is very important for the north Dublin area. The original Metro North rail project was from Dublin city centre to Swords, taking in Dublin Airport. The revised project with smaller stations is essentially half what was previously planned with a State saving of less than €400m over 10 years. However, over €190 million has been lost by the decision to scrap the original plan.
“The revised project will also take much longer to deliver than the original proposal and will now not be in place until after 2027. This is because the revised project, unlike the original project, has not gone through a Business Case appraisal which is the reason for the delay in the project commencing. In effect the Minister has asked the NTA to go back to the design stage with the project revision, rather than commencing with a project that was at planning and construction phase.
“We’re going to witness a population surge in the Greater Dublin Area over the lifetime of this capital programme and we need our public transport infrastructure to be able to cope with demand. However, Minister Paschal Donohoe’s Metro plan would only be able to handle an ultimate maximum capacity of 12,000 passengers per hour per direction. The original Metro North proposal with larger stations
and larger light rail carriages had an initial capacity of 17,000 passengers per hour per direction, with the option of scaling up to 20,000.
“For a 20% saving in cost Minister Donohoe is proposing reduced capacity of between 40-67%. We will devise an implementation strategy for fast tracking the Metro North proposal within existing financial resources,” vowed Senator O’Brien.