The Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Mr. Shane Ross T.D. has announced that the N5 Ballaghaderreen to Scramoge Road Project has obtained planning approval and is to progress to construction.
Minister Ross said: “This new national road will provide essential links between communities. As well as a new carriageway the project will include an additional 13km of side roads and existing road improvements, 17 at-grade T-junctions and 5 roundabouts. Good roads mean safe roads for all who use them. This new project improves safety for all road users including pedestrians and cyclists and supports the Government’s Road Safety Strategy. It will also eliminate sections of the N5 that have a collision rate twice above the national average.
The road network is the workhorse of our social and economic infrastructure. All of our bus services rely on our road network, the bulk of our freight is carried by road, and crucially, our road network links towns, cities and villages together boosting employment and investment.”
The project comprises the construction of 34km of new single carriageway road that will extend from the western end of the existing N5 Ballaghaderreen Bypass to the townland of Scramoge in County Roscommon, bypassing the towns and villages of Frenchpark, Bellanagare, Tulsk and Strokestown.
During the economic downturn Roscommon County Council continued to develop a plan to improve the N5 corridor. As a result, a business case was produced and it concluded that the construction of a new road to replace the existing N5 route was required.
Transport Infrastructure Ireland approved the business case for the project in December 2017 following technical appraisal reviews carried out by both the Department of Transport Tourism and Sport (DTTaS) and the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform (DPER). Approval was also given to Roscommon County Council to commence the statutory planning process and the scheme was submitted to An Bord Pleanála (ABP) in December 2017, along with the associated Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO).
An oral hearing into the proposed road development was convened by ABP on the 9th & 10th October 2018 in Strokestown and the Board confirmed approval for the scheme on 16th January 2019.
After concluding statutory public notifications process Roscommon County Council notified all affected landowners of the CPO becoming operative on 21st of March 2019. Roscommon County Council will continue to liaise with land and property owners as the road project proceeds.
Following the expiry of the period in which a party may apply for leave to seek a judicial review of ABP’s decision under the provision of the Planning and Development Act 2000 as amended (latest date being 23rd April 2019), Roscommon County Council are now in a position to proceed with the N5 Ballaghaderreen to Scramoge Road Project.
Currently, technical consultancy services are being procured to assist the Roscommon National Roads Office with the preparation of the main construction contract documents, the procurement process and the administration and monitoring of the main construction contract. During 2019, a series of advance works contracts will commence including archaeological investigations, ground investigations, boundary fencing, tree felling and additional clearance works. TII will support Roscommon County Council to achieve contract award before the end of 2020. Following receipt of tenders and subject to Government Approval to proceed the main construction contract will take three years to complete.
The total estimated investment value of the N5 Ballaghaderreen to Scramoge Road Project is approximately €200million.
This project is a key deliverable identified in Project Ireland 2040, improving access to the North West region of the country. When completed it will replace one of Ireland’s more deficient sections of national primary road.
Benefits of the Project
The anticipated benefits of this road project include: –
· Provides a safe and modern road to meet the requirement of the EU Regulations relating to the TEN-T network;
· Improves the environment of Strokestown, Tulsk, Bellanagare and Frenchpark by the removal of through traffic and in particular HGVs;
· Improves safety for all road users including pedestrians and cyclists and support the Government’s Road Safety Strategy;
· Eliminates sections of the N5 that have a collision rate twice above the national average.
· Reduces the cost of travel for business and improve journey times and journey time reliability along the N5;
· Provides a consistent high quality road along the N5 corridor to encourage and support investment and employment in County Roscommon and the west and north-west regions; and
· Avoids adverse impact on the existing internationally important archaeological site of Rathcroghan.