Lack of funding for south Westmeath roads

Cllr John Dolan is frustrated at the lack of investment planned for the N55 and the N62 roads in the south of the county.

He was speaking as county manager Barry Kehoe revealed the projects which are likely to benefit from the council’s Three-year Capital Programme for 2014-2016. While projects such as the Garrycastle Bridge realignment, sections of the N52, and improvements to the N4 featured strongly, there was no mention of these particular national secondary routes.

Cllr John Dolan said he was disappointed with the lack of projects on the list for south Westmeath.

“The N55 and the N62 are two of the busiest roads in the county, and I don’t see a penny here for these. There is a lot of traffic in the south of the county, and we are definitely the poorer end of the county as regards capital spending on roads. If there are worthy projects, they should be appearing in this list.

“If you look at the section of the N62 that’s in Offaly, obviously Offaly County Council think it is a priority,” he added.

County manager Barry Kehoe said that works on the N55 and N62 would be provided for in the capital plan under the more general heading of ‘NS Improvement Works’, which allocates €750,000 per year for the next three years for all the county’s national secondary routes.

In contrast, €850,000 is allocated for the N52 alone in 2014.

“We rely on the NRA, and they do their assessment on a national basis. I would hope to see significant investment in the next three years,” said Mr Kehoe.

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