Donegal North East Fianna Fáil TD Charlie McConalogue is urging the Government to recommit to funding the A5 project. Deputy McConalogue was commenting after the Northern Ireland Executive today committed £330 million to the development.
“I welcome confirmation from Stormont today that the Northern Ireland Executive remains committed to this crucial piece of infrastructure. This is the single most important infrastructure for the future of the region and for ensuring that it can develop economically in coming years. Thankfully, today’s announcement will see the work on the A5 dual Carraigeway start on two stretches of road between Derry and Strabane and between Ballygawley and Omagh, and will see approximately 37km of the total projects 88 kilometres completed by 2016,” said Deputy McConalogue
“The future of the project rested on the approach taken by the Northern Ireland Executive after the Fine Gael/Labour Government withdrew from its funding commitment. It is great news that Stormont remains committed to the project over the next four years and it is vital that all efforts are now made to ensure the project will be completed in full.
“The Northern Executive is now spending less on this than they had initially planned. This is as a direct result of this Government breaking its part of the bargain this year. In his speech to the Assembly today, Minister Sammy Wilson commented that the Fine Gael/Labour Government’s decision to cut the original contribution left the Executive with “no choice but to reconsider how to take forward capital investment in the affected years”. Minister Wilson also said that he wouldn’t be giving any further assurances on additional stretches of the road commencing without further commitments from Dublin.
“Thankfully, through the strong commitment shown today by the Executive today this project remains well and truly alive. It is absolutely essential that both Governments play a role in this cross-border project that will deliver enormous economic and social benefits to communities on both sides of the border.
“In light of developments today, I am urging the Taoiseach Enda Kenny and the Minister for Transport Leo Varadkar to commit to a new timeline and funding arrangement so that the A5 project can be completed in full. It would be a shame to thrown away years of hard work and cooperation on a project that’s of such huge economic importance to the North West.”