Saturday 21 April 2018

‘Metro project to give Swords a cutting edge for the future’

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Michael Savage and his sister Philomena at JC’s Supermarket in Swords
Michael Savage and his sister Philomena at JC’s Supermarket in Swords
Siblings Robert, Michael and Philomena, with their cousin Barry Savage, who run JC’s in Swords
Shoppers at JC's supermarket in swords

Laura Lynott

A FAMILY which has run a business empire traced back as far as 1913 says that Swords will finally become one of the most important areas on the capital’s map in 2027, with the ambitious Metro plan.

The Savage family has campaigned long and hard for the Metro and can finally see the dream is on the way to becoming a reality, thanks to Project Ireland 2040, which proposes Swords’ first train line by 2027.

The proposed service would finally connect north Co Dublin to Dublin city, Dublin Airport, DCU, the Mater Hospital and to the Southside, opening up a world of potential opportunity for tourism and business.

The €3bn Metro can’t roll into Swords soon enough, bringing with it the promise of new jobs, a better quality of life and reduced congestion, say residents and business owners.

Michael Savage, MD of JC’s Supermarket in the village, said his family and business partners – sister Philomena, check out supervisor; Niall, the general manager; Robert, trading director; Raymond, who is on the shop floor, and brother Cronan, who is in the off-licence – have all had the Metro on their wish list for many years.

“I personally made an observation a couple of years ago that we needed the Metro in Swords and it’s been our ambition to connect our home, the place we work and we love, to the rest of the city,” Michael (42) said.

“All across Dublin, other areas are well connected to the city but Swords wasn’t and, given the amount of people who live in Swords, we deserve better transport options.

“This will help the people of Swords get to work quicker and easier, help tourists find us on their way from Dublin Airport. It will connect us to the rest of our city in a much better way.

“I’m delighted. Swords is a fantastic place to live and I love it.

“The people are like no other people and we’ll now be connected to the rest of our city.”

JC’s Supermarket employs 130 staff, while the family’s bar, The Lord Mayor’s Pub, and their off-licence employ 30 more.

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“This plan makes so much sense,” Michael said.

“We’ve waited so long for it – take the cars off the road and give everyone a better quality of life.

“The only way to get to Dublin city or the airport right now is on the road and it’s congested.  

“Give us the option to get on the train and get round the city and everything improves.

“More people will come to live and work in Swords, more will come to shop, to enjoy tourism here – it’s a great part of Dublin and we want to see it opened up to many more people.

“But don’t make this an electoral box of chocolates – make this a vision that is really, truly, going to become a reality.

“I want to know that my nine-year-old daughter will live in a Swords where she can hop on the Metro to college, where the entire city is so easily available to her. I want this to be a Swords where the future is bright for all of our children.”

Anthony Cooney, from Fingal Chamber of Commerce, said:   “The Metro will add a huge boost to the local economy.

“From the construction phase, it will put a lot of money into the economy and there will be lot of feeder industries that could then enter into Swords,” he added.

“Businesses will find it more attractive to base their offices here because it will be so much easier to travel in from the city and airport.

“Tourism will be improved because suddenly Swords will be opened up to those travelling from the airport.

“We have Swords Castle and a cultural quarter here that’s being developed. Tourists would never have seen such gems before because our transport network bypassed them.”

Some €26m has already been earmarked for the regeneration of the cultural quarter and Swords Civic Cultural Centre as part of the area’s Capital Plan.  

Fingal County Council is planning to open up the new areas in 2020. The space will include a new exhibition and theatre section and a library.

Swords Castle is being rejuvenated as part of the project and, if the Metro plan goes ahead, the village will already have had years to prepare for more visitors on the rail line.

“The benefit to the Swords economy will be significant and people are very excited locally,” said Mr Cooney.

“We’ve waited a long time for the Metro and this time we truly hope it’s going to finally happen.”

For more information on Project Ireland 2040 visit the official website 

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