Grid West project announces preferred corridor for high capacity power line

EirGrid has announced the emerging preferred route corridor for the Grid West project. The chosen 1km wide corridor, which will accommodate a new power line, starts north west of Moygownagh, runs west of Ballina, east of Foxford and Swinford, south of Charlestown and Ballaghaderreen before linking into the existing Flagford substation, near Carrick-on-Shannon.

The €240 million Grid West project will develop a new high capacity power line linking north Mayo to Flagford in County Roscommon. By connecting the electricity generated by the region’s huge renewable energy resources, the project will facilitate significant job creation and investment as well as contributing to national recovery and growth. The Grid West project is part of EirGrid’s Grid25 plan to upgrade the national grid between now and 2025 to deliver a sustainable, competitive and secure electricity supply to homes, businesses and industries.

Since May 2012, there have been three rounds of public consultation, an extensive evaluation of the feedback received and consideration of a range of technical, environmental, community and economic factors. A total of 16 route corridor options were studied in the Grid West Study Area, which covers parts of the counties Galway, Leitrim, Mayo, Roscommon and Sligo.

EirGrid also announced that there are some changes to the planned substation in the Bellacorick area of North Mayo. The 400kV power line will run from the existing Flagford substation near Carrick-on-Shannon to a proposed new substation in North Mayo, approximately 2.5km north west of Moygownagh. The connection of this new substation to the existing regional 110kV network will now be subject to further technical studies and subsequent consultation once the studies have been completed.

The Grid West Project Manager, Sean Meagher emphasised that no decision regarding the final route has been made. EirGrid asks the public and communities to view the work which has been carried out and share their views with the Grid West project team.

Five public open days will be held over the next two weeks along the emerging preferred route corridor. EirGrid will then commence engagement with landowners within the corridor to identify a possible line route and substation locations, which will be the subject of further public consultation next year. The open days will be held from 1pm to 8pm on Wednesday October 16 in Moygownagh Community Hall, on Thursday October 17 in The BMW Assembly, Ballaghaderreen, on Tuesday October 22 in The Gateway Hotel, Swinford, on Wednesday October 23 in The Mayfly Hotel, Foxford and on Thursday October 24 in The Landmark Hotel, Carrick on Shannon.

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