Belfast Telegraph

Dublin to Cork railway upgrade as Government unveils transport spending package

Tens of millions of euro will be spent improving the country's road and rail network, it has been announced.

Under the spending plans, improvements will be made to the Dublin to Cork railway, trains are to be upgraded and new buses are being bought.

Transport Minister Paschal Donohoe said the 100 million euro investment package is aimed at plugging a massive spending hole caused by the financial crash.

"Following on from our economic collapse, the level of funding where land transport is concerned has been dramatically reduced," he said.

"Where land transport is concerned investment fell from a peak of three billion euro in 2008 to a historic low level of 850 million euro in 2014."

Mr Donohoe said there was not enough money to spend on maintaining, managing and renewing the existing transport system in recent years.

The new investment, rubber-stamped by Spending Minister Brendan Howlin, includes:

:: 29 million euro for upgrading trains.

:: nine million euro towards improving journey times on the Dublin to Cork rail line.

:: 20 million to replace and expand the State bus fleet to meet a growing demand.

:: two million euro to expand the Dublin Bikes scheme to Grangegorman and create new cycle lanes and facilities.

Another 34 million euro will be ploughed into improving national, regional and local roads.

Some 4.2 million euro has also been set aside for tourism-related projects, including the ongoing development of the Ancient East corridor and the Wild Atlantic Way.

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