The PPP for the M3 has been signed
An Irish Times report, Thursday, March 8, 2007, by Tim O'Brien says that the PPP for the M3 was signed on Wednesday March 7. A dark day for Tara, the Gabhra Valley and for Ireland.
Contracts for the construction of one of the State's most expensive
motorway sections yet, the controversial M3 motorway in Co Meath, have
been signed by Siac Ferrovial and the National Roads Authority. The
cost of the road, including land, is €900 million.
Siac Ferrovial, an Irish-Spanish consortium trading as Eurolink, has
already commenced preparatory works and has moved machinery on to a
site compound at Dunshaughlin. Construction of the 60km of motorway and
50km of ancillary roads is now expected to get under way in earnest.
A spokesman for Minister for the Environment Dick Roche said there were
no outstanding issues in relation to archaeology to delay the start of
At €900 million, the road is more expensive than all schemes so far
except the upgrade of the M50 where the addition of a third lane and
upgrade of the junctions is expected to cost €1 billion. In comparison,
Dublin Port Tunnel cost some €750 million - although the contractor is
seeking additional payments - and the Shannon Tunnel in Limerick has a
projected cost of about €570 million. The South Eastern Motorway, the
most expensive section of the M50, cost about €500 million.
Opponents of the M3 have not ruled out another legal challenge and in
the last month transport researcher Brian Guckian has lodged complaints
against Ireland with the European Commission and the European
Parliament over four Irish motorway projects, including the M3.
He told The Irish Times yesterday his complaint related to defects in
the environmental impact assessments of the M3, the proposed M7/M8
motorway in the midlands, the Monkstown Ring Road in south Dublin and
two schemes on the N6/M6 between Athlone and Galway.