A Galway East TD has rubbished claims that the development of the much-awaited Gort to Tuam motorway will not go ahead and branded the rumours as “not well founded”.
Minister of State for training and skills, Ciaran Cannon, made the comments on Tuesday while welcoming the announcement by the National Roads Authority that funding to the tune of €4.5 million will go towards pushing the Gort to Tuam motorway project forward. Minister Cannon described the news as a clear indication that the major road project “remains very much a priority for our Government”.
Speaking following the announcement Minister Cannon said the significant announcement will “allow the NRA to carry out certain preparatory works in anticipation for the final contract being awarded later this year or early next year.”
“Minister Varadkar announced a major cull of national roads projects in November of 2011 citing a major lack of resources as a result of the economic downturn. The Gort to Tuam motorway was one of only three projects nationally to survive the cull. Despite that vote of confidence in the west by the Government, there has been much speculation in recent weeks that the project had been mothballed but today's announcement of further investment indicates that the project is still very much on track.
Minister Cannon concluded: "I remain in constant communication with both Minister Varadkar and the Taoiseach on this issue as we all agree that this final section of motorway is a vital piece of infrastructure for the west of Ireland. The announcement is a major milestone in the development and it sends out a very strong signal of intent from the Government that this project will shortly become a reality. At this point in time the NRA's energies are focused on furthering a project at Newlands Cross. Once that is under way I am confident that we will see things happening quite quickly on the western front.”