Early opening for major section of M8 Dublin to Cork route
The M8 Fermoy to Mitchelstown scheme opens today (25/05/09) 9 months ahead of schedule. At a cost of €174m this 16km motorway came in on budget and was funded by the Irish Government under the National Development Plan 2007 – 2013, with part funding by the European Union from the Trans – European Transport Networks Budget.
- Runs between Carrigane north of Mitchelstown and Moorepark north of Fermoy in county Cork
- Cuts at least 10 mins. off average journey times from Cork to Dublin
- Will be used by 16,000 vehicles per day
The scheme was officially opened by the Minister for Transport, Mr. Noel Dempsey T.D., who, in welcoming the project said:
“Completion of this particular project represents the achievement of a number of important targets. This road has opened 9 months ahead of target, it provides improved access to the region, improved road safety and it is a further significant step towards the development of the entirety of the Cork-Dublin motorway identified in the NDP 2007-2013 and Transport 21.
Even in these times of significant economic constraint this Government is determined to continue with our roads building programme. This year alone we are spending almost €2 billion on our national, regional and local roads building programme. This year eight major road projects, totalling 156 km of dual carriageway, will open to traffic delivering safer more efficient journey times for motorists.
The benefits of this scheme to the whole region will be very significant. Expected travel times for motorists will be reduced by up to 10 minutes saving time and hassle. The improved accessibility of the region will stimulate further development and economic activity and it will also improve access to recreational and cultural facilities. Very importantly, the new road development will eliminate the potential for head-on collisions as a result of overtaking manoeuvres.”
Mr. Peter Malone, Chairman of the National Roads Authority, said:
“The opening of the M8 Fermoy to Mitchelstown project is an exciting stage as it almost completes the main Dublin to Cork corridor.
Just 14km of the M8 remains unopened to traffic but the final link is on schedule for completion next year. There is now 77 km of continuous modern roadway from Dublin to south of Portlaoise and 130km from Cullahill in County Laois to the Dunkettle Interchange in Cork.
Travel times between the two cities have been greatly reduced, road safety enhanced and access between the regions considerably improved.
This will provide a much needed boost for the country’s commercial and industrial sectors. Tourism will also be a winner as tourists from home and abroad will enjoy a safer and shorter journey with certainty of travel time.
In these difficult economic conditions the National Roads Authority remains committed to delivering national road schemes on time and on budget. All five inter-city links connecting Dublin with Cork, Limerick, Waterford, Galway and the Border will be open to traffic next year providing the country with a top class national road infrastructure.”
For further information contact:
Sean O’Neill Head of Communications NRA