The N6 Kilbeggan to Athlone national road scheme which was officially opened this week, is great news for business in the midland and west regions, it was claimed at the opening.
The new high quality dual carriageway commences at the western end of the completed N6 Kinnegad close to Kilbeggan scheme at Kilbeggan and connects to the eastern end of the existing Athlone Bypass.
Three towns and villages — Kilbeggan, Horseleap and Moate— are bypassed by the new road. As a result, there will be a reduction in travel time due, in particular, to the bypassing of Moate where delays of up to 45 minutes have been experienced on a regular basis at peak times.
Officiating at the opening ceremony Noel Dempsey Minister for Transport, said the opening of the N6 Kilbeggan to Athlone scheme is fantastic news for local people and other road users.
“This new road, which was delivered on time and on budget, will remove 10,000 vehicles per day from the bypassed towns and villages of Kilbeggan, Horseleap, and Moate.
“It will improve the quality of life for those living in these areas and make their local roads safer while at the same time cutting driving times on the Dublin to Galway route.
“I look forward to watching the boost that this new road will deliver for the local commercial and tourism industries.”
Peter Malone, chairman of the National Roads Authority, said that the opening of this scheme is hugely significant in the development of the key east-west axis from Galway to Dublin, one of Ireland’s premier business and tourism arteries.
“The completion of this 29km project means that motorists will now be able to travel all the way from Dublin to west of Athlone on 114 km of continuous motorway or dual carriageway.
The completion of this scheme sees 60 per cent of the entire 189km major inter-urban route from the capital to the City of the Tribes open to traffic.
The remainder of the route is under construction and is on schedule for completion in 2010. New roads of this high standard will deliver fast and reliable transportation of goods and services and will help address the challenges presented as a result of economic and demographic development.”
The entire major inter-urban route from Galway to Dublin will be complete by 2010. The schemes currently under construction are the N6 Athlone to Ballinasloe scheme which is due for completion next year, the 56km N6 Ballinasloe East to Galway project will be completed in 2010, and the N4 Lucan Bypass Upgrade scheme will be finished in 2009.
The N6 Kilbeggan to Athlone project was funded by the Irish Government under the National Development Plan, 2007-2013 and part financed by the European Union.