Test run for latest Luas extension
The latest extension to Dublin's transport network has been given a test run by Transport Minister Leo Varadkar.
The Citywest Luas extension is due to open this summer, with five stops serving commuters from Belgard to Saggart in west Co Dublin.
It is estimated that from July two million extra passenger journeys will be made every year on the line, which already runs between Connolly Station and Tallaght.
Mr Varadkar said continued investment in transport projects would create construction jobs and improve competitiveness.
"It is estimated that 15,000 jobs are created for every €1bn invested in capital projects, and that the economic return for every €1 invested can be as much as €2 or even €2.50," he said.
"I have already directed that funds not used by the NRA on new projects this year should be identified and diverted to repairing badly damaged secondary national, regional and local roads.
"These measures will result in hundreds of contracts, mainly for small, local firms this year. And they will boost confidence locally."
The Railway Procurement Agency (RPA) said the 4.2km extension to its light rail link will deliver top quality public transport services to established communities and help develop the Citywest business area.
The €150m project will take passengers from Saggart to the city centre in approximately 55 minutes.
Elsewhere Mr Varadkar told a construction conference in Dun Laoghaire there will be a comprehensive review of capital spending with a view to developing a new National Development Plan for 2012.
"When it is agreed by Cabinet it will give certainty to the industry and agencies about which projects are going ahead in the next six years and which are not," he added.