Written answers

Thursday, 4 December 2014

Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport

Road Network

Photo of Bernard DurkanBernard Durkan (Kildare North, Fine Gael)
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209. To ask the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if consideration has been given to increasing the traffic capacity of the M50; if the existing volume of traffic exceeds that for which the road was originally intended; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [46645/14]

Photo of Paschal DonohoePaschal Donohoe (Dublin Central, Fine Gael)
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As Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, I have responsibility for overall policy and funding in relation to the national roads programme.  The planning, design and implementation of individual road projects, such as the M50 is a matter for the National Roads Authority (NRA) under the Roads Acts 1993 to 2007 in conjunction with the local authorities concerned.

A substantial  upgrade of the M50 was completed in 2010. This resulted in the addition of a third lane in both directions from the M1 to Sandyford and a fourth auxiliary lane in places together with the development of freeflow junctions and the introduction of barrier free tolling.  This major investment has significantly enhanced the capacity of the motorway.  There are no proposals at present for further investment in additional capacity.

One of the conditions attached to an Bord Pleanála's approval of the upgrade was the publication of a scheme of demand management measures. The NRA in conjunction with the relevant local authorities published its M50 Demand Management Report in April 2014.

Looking to the future and increased travel demand  as the economy recovers further we will need to address congestion across the Greater Dublin Area (GDA) and not just on the M50.  In this context I have asked the National Transport Authority, as the agency responsible for strategic traffic management in the GDA, to work with the NRA and the GDA local authorities to prepare a report on congestion and to outline actions and investment that might be required in the short, medium and long term.  I expect the report to be completed within a few months.


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