The Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage and local Fingal TD Darragh O’Brien has welcomed the plans approved by Cabinet for the MetroLink preliminary business case.
Minister O’Brien said the plans for the ‘megaproject’ were exciting and will transform public transport in North County Dublin.
Details of the project which have been announced include the projected capacity, running times and number of stops along the line. It will consist of a fully segregated railway running from north of Swords to Charlemont in the south of Dublin City Centre. The route will include 16 stations including Dublin Airport, Fosterstown, Swords Central and Seatown.
The plans are for trains every three minutes during peak periods. This can rise to a service every 90 seconds by 2060 with the system capable of carrying up to 20,000 passengers per hour in each direction.
Minister O’Brien said he absolutely understood people’s weariness from previous announcements but that the project was now becoming a reality.
“The MetroLink project is finally moving in the right direction. Subject to the planning and procurement processes, MetroLink could commence construction in late 2025 and then be operational in the early 2030s – something which the people of North County Dublin are very much looking forward to,” he said.
“This Government is committed to the funding and delivery of MetroLink as quickly as possible. It will be truly transformative for the people of Swords and the wider North County Dublin are,” he concluded.
Dublin Fingal TD, Alan Farrell said, the news that the business case for MetroLink has been approved by Cabinet is welcome, but overdue, the Government should ensure the next steps are completed without undue delay.
Deputy Farrell said, “The best time to have built MetroLink was following the Forfas report of 1974, the next best time is now.”
“Everyone in the north county knows just how important this project is. It will not only transform the transport system in the area, but serve as a gamechanger for the entire country.”
Deputy Farrell continued, “MetroLink will be the first fully automated transport system in Ireland, carrying hundreds of thousands of passengers, connecting Dublin airport, hospitals, universities and the city centre. Serving 20,000 passengers, each way, every hour in the initial years. This will also see arrivals every 3 mins at peak hours in both directions.”
“The next phase will see TII lodge a Railway Order with An Bord Pleanála this September. With no unnecessary delays and the required Government approvals, MetroLink could commence construction in late 2025, such that it would be operational in the early 2030s.”
“MetroLink will also create jobs, approximately 8,000 during the construction phase alone. It will also offer cleaner ways of traveling; MetroLink provides a unique opportunity to remove thousands of cars from our roads on a daily basis, significantly reducing private car usage and associated carbon emissions.
“It will provide over 1 billion carbon neutral, fully electrified, passenger trips by 2050.”
Deputy Farrell added, “The systems used in the MetroLink project are the future, it’s our job to make it a present-day reality.”