To ask the Minister for Transport if preliminary work has begun on the proposals for light rail systems for Limerick and Cork; if so, the work that has been undertaken; when he expects draft proposals to be produced and placed on public display; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
- Jack Wall. (Nominated by: Thomas P. Broughan).
For ORAL answer on Tuesday, 5th February, 2008.
Ref No: 3407/08
Answered by the Minister for Transport
The Agreed Programme for Government foresees feasibility studies being completed within two years into LUAS-style light rail systems in Cork, Galway, Limerick and Waterford.
My Department has agreed with the Limerick local authorities that the terms of reference for the proposed Limerick Planning, Land Use and Transportation Study will include an examination of the feasibility of introducing light rail transit and / or bus rapid transit.
I understand that the Limerick local authorities hope to engage consultants by the end of April to work on this study.
The Cork local authorities have, in recent weeks, commissioned consultants to update the Cork Area Strategic Plan. At the request of my Department, the terms of reference for this update include a requirement that the review of the transportation strategies should include consideration of the feasibility of introducing light rail transit and / or bus rapid transit.
It is my expectation that both Cork and Limerick will have completed feasibility studies on light rail and bus rapid Transit by mid 2009. The publication and consultation on the feasibility studies will be a matter for the relevant local authorities.