€357m for transport in rural areas and more cycle paths
TRANSPORT spending will be increased by €357m as the Government progresses Climate Action Plan projects in the 2020 Budget.
Some €9m will go to "sustainable mobility" such as cycling greenways and urban cycle pathways, said Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe.
Overall, €2.7bn was allocated to the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport for next year, a "substantial increase" overall of €384m on this year, he added.
"This will include investment in our rural transport network. This funding includes a portion of the 2020 carbon tax revenues to support the sector," he said.
He added there will be a doubling of local council street charging points and fast charging points at taxi ranks at transport hubs.
Funding will continue for capital spending on the BusConnects programme, MetroLink and the Dart expansion programme.
State spending will also go to: building work on the National Train Control Centre; construction of the long awaited train station at Pelletstown, and delivery of eight longer Luas trams next year and tram extensions to enhance passenger capacity on the Green Line.
Nevertheless, Fianna Fáil spokesperson for transport, tourism, and sport, Marc MacSharry TD, criticised the minister for not doing enough to reduce overcrowding on trains within the country.
"Things have become so bad, last month commuters were encouraged to stagger their train journeys due to overcrowded carriages," he said.
"We now have a transport minister admitting we may not be able to transport you to work safely or on time at peak hours," he said.
He acknowledged the Budget contained "important measures to meet climate action targets".