Written answers

Thursday, 28 November 2019

Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport

Rail Network

Photo of David CullinaneDavid Cullinane (Waterford, Sinn Fein)
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226. To ask the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the status of the strategic development plan for the cross-Border enterprise rail service between Belfast and Dublin; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [49485/19]

Photo of Shane RossShane Ross (Dublin Rathdown, Independent)
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The 'Strategic Development Plan' referred to by the Deputy was a joint initiative of both Iarnród Éireann and Translink and was not a plan developed by my Department. As such it represents the ambition of both companies in relation to their corporate development of the Enterprise service over the next 20 years.

Within Project Ireland 2040, there is a commitment to conduct an evaluation of the economic benefits and value for money of high-speed rail on the main inter-urban rail network (including the Dublin to Belfast line) against improvements to existing and planned line speeds along the lines.

I can confirm to the Deputy that my Department has commenced preparatory work in relation to the proposed evaluation and the study itself will be commenced in 2020.

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