FINE GAEL DÁIL DEPUTY FOR KERRY
GRIFFIN CONTINUES CAMPAIGN FOR N22 BYPASS SCHEME IN DÁIL DEBATE
PROJECT “SHOVEL READY” – MINISTER VARADKAR
KERRY TD, Brendan Griffin, has raised the importance of progressing the N22 Ballyvourney to Ballincollig road project with Transport Minister, Leo Varadkar TD, during a topical issues debate in the Dáil. Speaking during the debate Deputy Griffin said:
“The new N22 would be a critical piece of regional infrastructure and would be crucial for improved access to and from Kerry. The new road is needed to help attract industry and jobs, improve access for tourists, reduce journey times for commuters and patients of health services in Cork and improve safety for everyone travelling between Kerry and Cork.
The proposed scheme stretches from the eastern side of Macroom town, at Coolcower, to the western side of Ballyvourney to Sliabh Riabhach, and represents approximately 40 km of realignment involving five roundabouts and 20 bridges. The cost of the project is €200 million plus.
Deputy Griffin, who was sharing speaking time with Cork North West TD, Michael Creed, thanked Minister Varadkar for his assistance in progressing this project to date and urged him to keep the road on top of his agenda so that it will be built as soon as possible.
CPOs (Compulsory Purchase Orders) have been issued to landowners and their entitlement to a goodwill payment has been guaranteed. The project was delayed for a significant period in the courts, but this has now been overcome. Deputy Griffin proposed that the N22 would be bundled with other infrastructural projects in the region, particularly the Dunkettle interchange, which has a high ranking priority with the NRA. He said that if it would help the road get built sooner, a PPP approach as part of a bundle should be seriously considered.
In his response Minister Varadkar said:
“The N22 project is the Ballyvourney to Macroom improvement scheme which aims to bypass Macroom town and involves the construction of 43 km of new carriageway from the end of the Ballincollig bypass to Ballyvourney. The project was the subject of a judicial review against approval of the scheme, but the legal challenge has been rejected. As a result, notices to treat have been served on affected landowners. This means that once the land is bought, the project will be shovel ready. The NRA has made an allocation of ■400,000 in respect of this project for 2013.
I have had some discussions with the NRA on the matter with a view to pursuing it as a public private partnership. The intention is to go ahead with the Gort to Tuam road project which is first on the list and has already gone to tender and then to deal with the New Ross and Gorey to Enniscorthy projects. As the Macroom to Ballyvourney and Dunkettle projects are the only ones with full planning permission – at that stage the land will be purchased – it is planned to pursue them either separately or as a bundle under a public private partnership scheme”