Fianna Fáil TD, Darragh O’Brien has said that the net result of Friday’s re-announcement of the project formerly known as Metro North, will be additional delays as it will not now be progressed until 2027 at the earliest.
“The long overdue project has been delayed by seven years and counting, with no definite timeline for development in sight.
“There is nothing in today’s announcement that brings its construction any closer. In fact, I suspect due to the addition of a south side section, it is likely to be even further delayed.
“Those living in North Dublin have been left waiting far too long for a project that has continually been mothballed by successive Fine Gael-led governments.
“As I have consistently noted, this transport link is absolutely essential to the socio-economic development of North Dublin. Traffic chaos ensues across our communities and today’s rehashed announcement if anything, brings us backwards.
"During the last Fianna Fáil government, full planning permission was secured, land was acquired and a Rail Procurement Order was obtained. Therefore, there is nothing but a sheer lack of political willingness holding back this project from getting started right away.
“It is frustrating and deeply regrettable that more than half a decade has been wasted by Fine Gael’s inaction. North Dublin is being repeatedly ignored.
“Giving the project a new name will do nothing to restore the public’s faith in it ever being delivered,” concluded O’Brien.
- Government re-announce 7 year old plan launched by Fianna Fáil -
Fianna Fáil TD, Darragh O’Brien has said that the people of North County Dublin have been left waiting too long for a project that has been in the pipeline year after year.
It has been reported today that once again, changes are expected to be made to the long promised, long overdue transport project; Metro North.
Commenting on today’s reports, “The transport link to the airport and on to Swords is absolutely essential particularly as traffic gridlock continues to heighten across the city and surrounding suburbs.
“The Government bought themselves five years to dawdle by suggesting that they were reviewing the project.
"Subsequently, Paschal Donohue TD announced ‘Metro-Lite’ which was essentially a scaled back, less serviceable design of the original plans adopted by Fianna Faíl many years ago.
He added, “When we made moves on developing Metro North while in Government, Fianna Fáil secured full planning permission, acquired land and obtained a Rail Procurement Order.
“On that basis, Minister Ross should not encounter any delays in getting the project up and running immediately. There is no reason that this project cannot get started right away.
"Dublin Fingal has the youngest population in Ireland. A huge cohort of the 300,000 people living in our area rely daily on public transport and have seen no improvements whatsoever in the system over the past two Fine Gael led Governments. If anything we have gone backwards.
“It has taken Government seven years to finally see sense and revert back to Fianna Fáil’s original project plan.
“It is frustrating and deeply regrettable that seven years have been wasted by inaction and a lack of political will from this Government. Once again, North Dublin has been ignored.
“Much work will be needed to restore the public’s faith in this transport system ever being delivered. Repeated promises are no longer enough,” he concluded.
The Deputy was speaking yesterday during a special Dáil debate on the matter secured by Fianna Fáil’s team of Dublin TDs.
He said, “In the past 6 years there has been almost a 10% increase in the size of our local population, yet the Government have presided over significant decreases to essential resources in the area.
“In particular, I have been consistently campaigning for increases in Garda presence for the past 5 years since the number of Gardaí in our area have been cut by over 20%.
“Swords has transformed in recent years into one of the busiest districts in the Capital and the area has lost over 10 full-time Gardaí, In that regard I appreciate that the Minister has acknowledged this pressure and allocated 5 community Gardaí to the area.
“The further 5 which will be stationed in Balbriggan will go some way towards restoring a Garda presence to police and protect the town.
"I must acknowledge however, that information received by Fianna Fáil strongly indicates that there has been a steady decline in the number of Gardaí stationed in Fingal and across Dublin which must be reversed. Donabate and Portane; a population of over 11,000 remains without any Garda presence.
"Fine Gael has presided over a continuous erosion of the capacity of Gardaí in Dublin. All the while, the Minister's own constituency has experienced an increase - It is doubtful that this is some strange coincidence.
"The people of Fingal dealt with the full closure of Rush Garda Station, which remains closed despite any recent showboating to the contrary. The downgrading of Malahide and cuts across the board to Garda numbers have adversely impacted our area.
"Protecting the people of Dublin Fingal may not be a matter of priority to those in Government but I will continue to raise the importance of restoring a full Garda presence in the county.
Communities across Dublin Fingal will suffer if this Government presides over any further hit to Garda resources and must be better protected by Gardaí adequately targeting crime prevention and rebuilding public confidence," concluded Deputy O'Brien.
My colleague Cllr Brian Dennehy and I have received a notice from Fingal County Council in relation to an application has been received from Lusk Athletic Club for permission to temporarily close roads in the Lusk area for the purpose of holding a 4 Mile Road Race.
It is proposed that the roads will be closed from 2.00pm to 5.00pm on Sunday 4th March 2018.
The roads in question are:
• Chapel Green
• Chapel Road
• Quickpenny Road from Chapel Green/Post Office Road to he junction with Man O War/ Ballough Road
• Skerries Road/R127 (junction of Station Road to Skerries Road Roundabout).
• Rathmore Road/ R127, Northbound Lane, (Skerries Road Roundabout to Station Road Roundabout).
• Station Road/ R128, from Station Road Roundabout to Dublin Road.
• Main Street
• Post Office Road
Alternative routes available for vehicular traffic are as follows:
Motorists on Chapel Road will not have access to Chapel Green.
Vehicles will need to divert via Church Road, Barrack Lane and Ministers Road to access the west side of the village.
Traffic wishing to use Quickpenny Road should use Ministers Road and Church Road to access the rest of the village.
Traffic that wishes to gain access to Lusk should divert to the R132 and enter Lusk via Ministers Road and Church Road.
Local access only for traffic to the Main Street or areas off the Main Street will be required to wait until there is a gap in the participants before being directed towards Skerries Road Roundabout.
It will not be possible to travel south on Main Street until all participants have completed the race.
Vehicular traffic from Lusk Village Housing Estate will be diverted to leave the estate via Raheny Roundabout out on to Rathmore Road/R127 when gaps appear among the participants.
Traffic wishing to access Skerries from the R127/Rathmore Road will have to travel via Rush.
Pedestrians, Emergency Vehicles and local access will be facilitated by local marshals.
Diversion signage and marshals will be in place for the duration of the closure.
Any person may lodge an objection online through the Consultation Portal, at https://consult.fingal.ie, or in writing to the Senior Executive Officer, Balbriggan Swords Operational
Area, Fingal County Council, Grove Road, Blanchardstown, Dublin 15, to arrive no later than 4.00pm on Friday 9th February 2018.
- Ability of FG to deliver on national development projects has to be questioned –
Fianna Fáil TD for Fingal, Darragh O’Brien says countless households across North County Dublin could be left without access to high speed broadband as a result of the Government’s mismanagement of the National Broadband Plan.
He made the comments following the news that Eir is the latest bidder to leave the tendering process.
O’Brien said, “It is a widely held belief that a lack of efficient broadband connection is an issue that only affects rural parts of Ireland but that is simply not the case.
“In reality, there are large swathes of broadband blackspots in Fingal some areas of which are adjacent to Dublin Airport; a major transport hub that serves millions of passengers each year.
“It’s quite shocking to consider that such a vast area which has a dynamic local economy from technology and finance to the agri-food sector, is left without a high speed broadband connection.
“Fingal has a population of over 300,000 and is the fastest growing county in Ireland. Many of those who have moved to the area would like the convenience of working from home but because of the shortage of broadband around their home they have no choice.
He added, “Our local economy drives millions in investment and businesses based in Fingal should be able to expect full access to efficient services such as basic broadband.
“This Government cannot claim to prioritise the growth of indigenous business and at the same time allow the National Broadband Plan to flounder for years by shifting targets and deadlines at every juncture.
“Minister Naughten has failed to prioritise the roll out of high speed broadband to countless households in the direct vicinity of one of the Capitals largest satellite towns.
“It appears as if the NBP is hanging by a thread and I am not at all confident that it can proceed with just one bidder.
“Fingal has the youngest age profile of any county and in today’s day and age of a technological literate society, to be left without access to broadband is incomprehensible.
O’Brien presses Minister for update on St Molaga’s new school build
Temporary prefab accommodation is not fit for purpose
Fianna Fáil TD, Darragh O’Brien has said that appropriate permanent accommodation must be developed at St Molaga’s National School, Balbriggan as a matter of priority.
In information received by the Deputy through Parliamentary Question, the Minister for Education Richard Bruton confirmed that a meeting has been arranged with school authorities for early this month in relation to the project.
Speaking following a visit to the school earlier today, Deputy O’Brien said, “For some time now, a large staff of teachers and management have been providing a top class education to close to 500 pupils in substandard conditions.
"The school population has continued to increase while it’s been placed on the major school building list for 2019-2021. From my own observation of the current school accommodation this morning, it is glaringly obvious that there is a critical need for this build.
“The Government’s inaction in relation to the required upgrade has deeply frustrated the whole town of Balbriggan and the wider Fingal community.
“Progress must be made before pupils and staff are left in substandard, inadequate teaching and learning environment. Providing additional prefab accommodation to manage demand is neither a sufficient or long-term solution.
“While the Minister had confirmed that Department officials are currently preparing the project brief, the appointment of a design team must be fast-tracked to get this upgrade underway.
He concluded, “We have already had to wait far too long for this essential development. At our meeting earlier today I personally committed to working with the Board of Management and parents to make sure this project goes ahead.”