Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan T.D., Lord Mayor of Dublin, Hazel Chu, Mayor of South Dublin, Ed O’Brien and Cathaoirleach of Kildare Co.Co. Mark Stafford joined Iarnród Éireann’s CEO, Jim Meade formally opened the first round of public consultation on the Emerging Preferred Option on DART+ South West at Heuston Station recently. Funded by the National Transport Authority, under Project Ireland 2040 and the Innovation and Networks Executive Agency (INEA) with powers delegated by the European Union TEN-T core network, the DART+ South West project, as part of the DART+ Programme. The project will deliver an improved electrified network, with increased passenger capacity and enhanced train performance between Hazelhatch & Celbridge and Heuston and Glasnevin/Docklands area via the Phoenix Park Tunnel.
Locally the project will continue the four-tracking of the rail line from Park West & Cherry Orchard Station into Heuston, extending the works completed on the route in 2010. The Emerging Preferred Option is also compatible with future stations at Kylemore and Cabra, although the construction of these stations is not part of this project.
The first phase of public consultation on this project is now live. It is designed to present the Emerging Preferred option for provision of DART+ South West to communities and stakeholders along the route. All are encouraged to review the full details at www.dartplus.ie, which also features an interactive virtual room. A dedicated phone line, email address and online feedback form are all available at dartplus.ie. Due to the current public health restrictions, in-person consultation is currently not permitted. A series of webinars for communities along the route will commence next week.
Upon completion of this consultation, all submissions will be carefully considered by the project design team and these will be used to inform the subsequent design development. Once this design work is complete a second round of public consultations will take place. This will be followed by more detailed design work before the lodging of a railway order application to an Bord Pleanála, A statutory consultation period will take place after lodging of the application and it is expected that An Bord Pleanála will hold an oral hearing on the application, which will be open to all members of the public.
Speaking at the launch, the Minister for Transport, Eamon Ryan T.D said: We want to encourage more people to make the switch to public transport by making it faster, more frequent and more accessible. The Dart+ South West project is critical to our overall plans for Dublin and the surrounding counties. I encourage everyone to take the time to engage in this consultation process and feedback your views on how we can create a rail service that serves the needs of all its users”.