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Government's commitment to fund development of Metro North project
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2 July 2008


To ask the Minister for Transport if the allegations contained in a newspaper article (details supplied) in relation to Metro North, where a source is quoted as saying, Metro North will be the first to go, are true; and if he will make a statement on the future of the project and the timescale for completion.

- Róisín Shortall.

Irish Daily Mail, Thursday June 26, 2007, Page 1.

Ref No:   26148/08

To ask the Minister for Transport if he will confirm the Government's commitment to fund the development of the Metro North project; when construction of this project is due to commence; when construction of this project is due to be completed; when is it due do open; the amount it is expected to cost; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

                                                                                                Joan Burton

For WRITTEN answer on Wednesday, 2nd July, 2008.

Ref No:   26286/08

Answered by the Minister for Transport

Noel Dempsey



I propose to answer Questions 177 & 178 together.

The Government remains committed to the implementation of the Metro North project which is a critical element of the Transport 21 strategy to transform the public transport system in the Greater Dublin Area. 

The primary purpose of Metro North is to provide a high quality public transport service for north Dublin.  It will serve a number of important generators of traffic the Mater Hospital, DCU and Dublin Airport.  More importantly the successful implementation of Fingal County Council's development plan, particularly in the greater Swords area, hinges on the delivery of Metro North. 

The Metro North project is progressing well- the tender documents were issues to the four PPP bidding consortia in mid May, the Railway Procurement Agency (RPA) has held meetings with the consortia recently. The bidders are putting their bids together with a view to submitting them towards the end of this year.

Detailed planning and design work on the project is ongoing and the RPA expects to lodge an application with An Bórd Pleanála for a railway order in the current year.

The target date for completion of the project is 2013.  However, this date will be critically determined by the outcome of both the planning and procurement processes.  These processes will also determine when the main project will commence, when a contractor will be appointed, when the project will be completed and when operations will commence.

In January 2008, the Government approved the funding structure for the Metro North PPP, including an Exchequer provision for advance works ahead of the main PPP contract.

I am not in a position to publish the estimated capital cost of the Metro North project in advance of the completion of the public procurement process.  The publication of such commercially sensitive information prior to the completion of the competitive procurement process would prejudice the State's capacity to derive maximum value for money in respect of the project.