Green Party leader Eamon Ryan has called for the planned Metrolink to be extended underground through UCD, as the deadline for a final plan on the route is extended to next year.
The MetroLink project is an estimated €3bn project which would see the development of a north-south urban rail service in Dublin, connecting destinations such as Dublin Airport and the City Centre on a proposed route between Swords and Sandyford. A large proportion of the MetroLink project is planned to run underground, rising above ground to run along the existing Luas Green Line.
The Luas Green Line will be upgraded to a “metro standard” as part of the project. Rethink MetroLink, a community group opposing the current plans, claim that the development of the MetroLink along the Green Line would leave it shut for at least 9 months and up to 2 years.
A map of the planned MetroLink stops (source: MetroLink.ie)
MetroLink is scheduled to open for service in 2027 and would see a 19 minute commute from Dublin city centre to the airport.
We do need to Rethink Metrolink. It makes real sense to think big about public transport in South Dublin. By continuing the tunneling machine, either to Tereneure/Tallaght or UCD Sandyford, we can keep the Luas green line open and spreads the gain to other suburbs. @RMetrolink https://t.co/qOJ9arxOQC
— Eamon Ryan (@EamonRyan) November 26, 2018
The campaign group has likened the current proposals to a “Berlin Wall” which would ruin communities and cause “commuter chaos”. Their alternative proposals would see the metro remain underground on the south side of the city and routed “through UCD and onto Sandyford”.
Communities ruined by “Berlin Wall” incl Windy Arbour. How will school children, cyclists, ederly, disable people cross with high speed driverless train track segregated along its length by a 4 metre high wall? @Shane_RossTD @campaignforleo @MurphyEoghan @LOVE_DUNDRUM @EamonRyan pic.twitter.com/R3B0J0d9RD
— Rethink Metrolink (@RMetrolink) November 28, 2018
A planning application to An Bord Pleanála is set to be submitted in the third quarter of next year with a decision anticipated in 2020. Construction is currently scheduled to begin in 2021. The project group anticipates that the light rail metro system would carry more than 50 million passengers per year.