Minister Eamonn Ryan’s intention to undertake a Strategic Rail Review of the rail network to examine the strategic context for investment in the rail network on the entire Island of Ireland, is very welcome according to Tuam Independent deputy Sean Canney.
The decision follows on from the EY report on the Western Rail Corridor Phase 2 & 3 (Athenry to Claremorris) and this report the deputy says, highlighted the need for the strategic review.
The EY report was considered to be too focused and failed to look at the potential for freight and how the Western Rail Corridor would fit into a national strategy for rail development over the next 20 years. The EY report lacked any adequate strategic perspective, he claims.
“The Strategic Review will examine Inter Urban Connectivity, Inter Regional Connectivity including within and to different regions. The review will also examine international Gateway connectivity to airports and seaports and Freight connectivity . Investment in the region is essential for balanced economic growth and I welcome the Government’s commitment to consider the role of rail in rural Ireland and looking at inter-regional rail connectivity.”