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19 Jan 2022

Council chief welcomes priority for Tipperary Bypass but worries over future of rest of N24 upgrade

Council chief welcomes priority for Tipperary Bypass but worries over future of rest of N24 upgrade

Tipperary County Council’s roads chief has welcomed the Transport Minister’s commitment to prioritise the Tipperary bypass section of the N24 upgrade but is worried the rest of the project will be put on the back burner.
This was the concern the council’s Director of Services for Roads, Transportation and Infrastructure Marcus O’Connor voiced at Tipperary County Council’s annual budget meeting.
Fine Gael Cllr Michael Fitzgerald highlighted at the meeting Transport Minister Eamon Ryan’s recent commitment that Tipperary Town bypass part of the Cahir to Limerick Junction N24 upgrade will be built before the rest of the project due to the traffic congestion clogging up the town.
He said they were delighted to hear this from the Minister in the Dáil but he wondered has Transport Infrastructure Ireland been notified of this and how will it impact on the overall project decision.
Mr O’Connor responded that the council anticipated the final route for the N24 Cahir to Limerick Junction will be selected sometime around Easter next year.
He said Minister Ryan wanted to prioritise that section of the road which was fine and it will be a political decision. However, he was concerned if the Government just moved to do the Tipperary bypass and didn’t complete the full project.
Mr O’Connor said the biggest problem on the Cahir/Limerick Junction section of the N24 was Tipperary Town but there were significant other problems on other parts of this stretch of the road that have to be addressed. Among them were the bad bends at Ballydrehid near Cahir, which was a very difficult section of the road. This area of the road outside of the town had the highest fatalities. But he stressed the council recognised Tipperary Town was the “hugest bottleneck” causing problems for the businesses and residents of Tipperary.
Tipperary Town Independent Cllr Annemarie Ryan reminded the council that its elected members also said they wanted the Tipperary bypass section of the project to be prioritised as part of the overall N24 upgrade in a motion they passed and sent to the Minister for Transport, Minister for Public Enterprise and Taoiseach.
Mr O’Connor stressed the council fully agreed with that. “I think there has been a bit of a meeting of minds on this issue. That whole scheme needs to go ahead but if there is to be a section picked out to do first, that should be the one,” he added.

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