The National Transport Authority (NTA) has said it “is not the case” that key projects in Dublin are to be delayed or deferred.
The authority has moved to clarify and “correct any misinterpretations” following the publishing of the Greater Dublin Area (GDA) Draft Transport Strategy.
The strategy indicated that the MetroLink project for Dublin was to be postponed for another 10 years.
However, the NTA said it has not proposed any change in the timeline for the 19km railway service between Swords, Dublin Airport, and Dublin city centre.
“The pathway for delivery for MetroLink is the same today as it was before the GDA strategy was published this week. MetroLink is still scheduled to go to planning next year and is still scheduled to be constructed as soon as possible after that,” the NTA said.
The NTA said it is “not proposing any deferral of the four Luas projects provided for in our current strategy”.
The strategy had proposed that major rail projects including Luas lines to Finglas, Lucan, Bray and Poolbeg would not be expected to be delivered until after 2031.
The NTA said: “Luas to Finglas is still due to go to planning in 2024 and constructed in the years after that.
“The other three Luas projects are all still on the same schedule they were on before we published our Strategy this week. We have not proposed any deferral to any of these schemes.”
The NTA added that it has not and will not propose any deferral of the DART+ projects.
However, some changes have been proposed.
“For example, there are potentially eight new Luas lines that we believe will be necessary in the decades ahead and it is our view that provision should be made for those starting now,” the NTA said.
“There is a new rail line proposed to serve Navan for projected population increases in the years ahead.
“DART services are to be further extended, beyond what is currently proposed under DART+ to places like Wicklow, Kilcock, and Sallins.”
Earlier today, Taoiseach Micheál Martin said it is not true that the MetroLink has been delayed by 10 years, and vowed that the project will be built.
Mr Martin told the Dáil that funding for the project provided in the National Development Plan (NDP) is the “ultimate guarantor that we will get MetroLink built”, with a planning application set to be submitted next year.
Speaking during Leaders’ Questions, he said: “This idea that has kind of been spun out there, that somehow it has been shelved for 10 years, is just not the truth.
“It’s going to planning in early 2022. It has to go through public spending codes and the various approvals.
“I don’t think anybody here would expect otherwise.
“The fact that the NDP has a 10-year envelope and has a 10-year framework, I think, is the ultimate guarantor that we will get MetroLink built.
“That is our determination as a Government.
“So, far from shelving anything, work is proceeding at pace to get the MetroLink going in terms of all of the necessary decisions that need to be taken.”