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Mon May 27 2024

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Design funds secured for Irish rail expansion

21 Jul 20 The European Union has awarded a grant worth €8.8m (£8m) for design work to expand the Dublin Area Rapid Transit (Dart) network.

The European Commission has confirmed the award of the funding for the design phase of the upgrade of the Kildare Line, which is part of the Irish government’s Dart Expansion project. The investment was secured under the EU's Connecting Europe Facility (CEF).

Minister Eamon Ryan said: “I am delighted that the Kildare Line Design phase of Dart Expansion is being supported by the Connecting Europe Facility. Dart Expansion is set to double the capacity of our rail network and will facilitate an important reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and a shift towards a climate resilient society. For the Kildare line, the project will facilitate more services, greater capacity and electrification, as well as enhancing the infrastructure into Heuston Station - one of the busiest rail corridors in the country.”

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Minister of state Hildegarde Naughton added: “The government is committed to prioritising plans for the delivery of major public transport projects including Dart Expansion and BusConnects. The current rail system in Dublin is approaching capacity, and without investment, will leave the railway struggling to accommodate the population growth projected for the region. I am pleased that this project has secured financial backing from the EU.”

Jim Meade, chief executive of Iarnród Éireann, said: “The Dart Expansion project will ensure the communities we serve - both on the Kildare line and nationally - will gain from better rail services, and a more sustainable future. The support for this Design phase continues the support we have seen over decades from the European Union for the development of rail infrastructure and services in Ireland.”

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