05 Oct 2022

Tipperary rail line looks on track to have work completed in 2022

Tipperary rail line looks on track to have work completed in 2022

Tipperary rail line looks on track to have work completed in 2022

There was encouraging news this week for those behind the campaign to upgrade the Ballybrophy to Limerick rail line
The line covers Roscrea, Cloughjordan, Nenagh, Birdhill and Castleconnell in county Limerick.

For the past 20 years, the North Tipperary Community Rail Partnership has been campaigning - with some success- to have the line upgraded to allow for higher speeds and for improved services, including a lunchtime service.

Over the past number of years, the line has been subject to intermittent closure as Irish Rail worked to replace the old track with continuous welded track (CWT), which would allow for increased speeds.

It closed for a number of weeks last year and is currently closed again while track work is carried out.

However, this may be the last closure as Deputy Alan Kelly has been told in a Dáil reply that, consideration is being given to complete the work this year.

The Labour leader had submitted two Parliamentary Questions to Minister for Transport Eamonn Ryan on a new timetable for the service to include a lunchtime train and seeking funding for the track upgrade.

“I can confirm to the Deputy that track relaying on the Ballybrophy line is provided for within this year’s Infrastructure Manager Multi-Annual Contract (IMMAC) work programme,” said Minister Ryan.

He pointed out that, last year, 7.5miles of track was relayed, leaving a total of 12 miles outstanding.

“This year’s work programme planned an additional four miles to be relayed by the end of the year. However, consideration is now being given to expediating the delivery of the programme to ensure that the entire outstanding 12 miles is completed in 2022 and I am hopeful that will be achieved this year,” he said.

In relation to the line getting an extra lunchtime service, Minister Ryan responded that, while he had responsibility for policy and overall funding in relation to public transport, he was not involved in the operations of public transport.

He said that the National Transport Authority (NTA) had statutory responsibility for securing the provision of public passenger transport services nationally and for the scheduling of these services in conjunction with the relevant transport operators.

“I have, therefore, forwarded the question to the NTA for direct reply,” he said.

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