Taoiseach hails the new road as a catalyst for regional growth
Taoiseach Micheál Martin officially opened the new N4 Collooney to Castlebaldwin Road Project on Monday as a memorial was erected close to the route to remember all the lives lost on the old road.
The N4 Action Group had campaigned for over 30 years for the new route which opened to traffic in August.
It’s one of the first key National Roads Projects to be delivered under Project Ireland 2040’s Regional Connectivity objective.
The new €140 million, 15km project will significantly improve safety for communities and road users; reduce journey times between Dublin and Sligo; and make Sligo and the North West more accessible for investment and tourism.
An Taoiseach said: “This project is about enhancing people’s quality of life. It will significantly improve road safety for local communities and for everyone travelling between Sligo and Dublin.
“The new road will also be a catalyst for sustainable regional growth and development, encouraging further investment and employment opportunities in Sligo and the North West. It will enhance the quality of life of this community, improving accessibility and making this an even more attractive destination for investment and a place to work and live.”
Minister of State at the Department of Transport, Hildegarde Naughton said: “The opening of the N4 today is not only an important milestone for Sligo, the communities and businesses that it serves; so too is it critical from a road safety perspective.
“Tragically, in the past three decades we have lost 30 lives on the old N4. I am confident that the 15km of new National Primary Road will make it a safer place for commutes to work and school, or for travel to visit friends and family in the decades ahead.
“While it is impossible to put a price on any one life saved on our roads, the Government’s investment of €140 million on this vital piece of infrastructure will result in 27 fewer fatalities and 87 fewer serious injuries by 2051, based on current predictions.”
Cllr. Paul Taylor, Cathaoirleach of Sligo County Council said: “This is an important project for everybody in County Sligo. Removing cars and trucks from the old N4 and designating it a Local Road with a new cycleway makes local communities safer and enables people to choose walking or cycling for short local journeys.
“It also has the potential to be a game changer by helping to boost the local economy, bring jobs to the region and make Sligo a better and safer place to live, travel, and work in.” Construction started in 2019 and took just two and a half years to complete.
Cormac O’Rourke, Chairman of Transport Infrastructure Ireland said it was a prime example of the upgrades needed to the national roads network to deliver on TII’s remit to enhance safety and improve efficiency under the Government’s Project Ireland 2040 plan.