Sinn Féin TD for Louth and East Meath Imelda Munster has called on Louth County Council to give the utmost priority to the application for funding for the Northern Cross Route under the LIHAF programme.
The window for applications opened on 1st February, and is due to close on 31st March.
Deputy Munster said:
“This is the third opportunity to apply for funding, with the council previously submitting two unsuccessful applications.
“The Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government, following a proposal I made to the Minister after the last unsuccessful application, organised a workshop on the 5th February last, and I was glad to hear that two senior staff members of Louth County Council were in attendance.
“It is imperative that the new application fits the new defined criteria, and it’s also imperative that this is a case of third time lucky for the application.
“Once Louth County Council have confirmed that the application has been submitted, and once I have seen a copy of same, I will pursue it with the Minister to ensure that this vital piece of infrastructure, that has been in planning since 2006, can finally get the go-ahead from government.
“We can no longer put up with daily gridlock in Drogheda. This is about a vital piece of infrastructure and sustainable planning, and it is a must for Drogheda.
“We’ve waited long enough.”
Sinn Féin TD for Louth and East Meath Imelda Munster has called for the Minister for Housing, Eoghan Murphy TD, or officials from his department, to meet with officials from Louth County Council in order to progress funding for the Northern Cross route, after his department rejected the council’s appeal for funding for the project under the Urban Regeneration and Development Fund. His department originally rejected the application earlier this year.
Deputy Munster said:
“I wrote to the Minister this week asking him to meet with officials from the council to address the issues that affecting the funding application, as it is vitally important that this project gets the go ahead as quickly as possible.
“I raised this matter in the Dáil twice in the last two weeks, to ensure that this government is aware of the importance of this road and the fact that it is central to the Northern Environs Plan.
“Under the Northern Environs Plan, Louth County Council would open up lands for housing development, something this government is constantly advocating.
“Without this road Drogheda will continue to face daily gridlock with HGV traffic coming into the town centre.
“We can’t plan for the development of thousands of houses without having the infrastructure in place. This route is central to the Northern Environs Plan, which the people of Drogheda have been waiting for since 2006.
“This government and the last government have failed to deliver this project for Drogheda. I would hope that the Minister will listen to my proposal and take the initiative to work constructively with the council to secure funding for the project.
“We’ve been waiting over thirteen years at this stage. In that time gridlock has worsened in the town and the housing crisis has escalated. It’s time we got moving on the Port Access Northern Cross Route.”