All Ireland Transport Strategy needed now more than ever
Speaking from Meath today, Sinn Féin Regional Development spokesperson Foyle MLA Raymond McCartney has reiterated the demand for the Department of Transport and the Department for Regional Development to honour the Common Chapter commitments to deliver an All Ireland Development plan vis-à-vis road safety, improving the road infrastructure.
Mr McCartney said:
"In the light of the EuroRap - the EU Road Assessment Programme report launched this week; it is obvious that this country needs an All Ireland Transport Strategy that deals with improving road safety, rural - urban interconnectivity, environmental impacts to decrease emissions and to develop a 21st Century multi-modal network that can significantly reduce dependency on the motor car.
"The Cross-Border impact of this study has been well highlighted by the Minister responsible for Transport, Martin Cullen and Dr.Malcom McKibbin, the Chief Executive of the DRD Roads Service. I am calling on both Governments to seriously look at the post-Good Friday policy context and redress all the issues outlined in the report, to plan, implement and deliver the All Ireland strategy this relatively small island should have in place.
Raymond McCartney expressed his concern at the Minister's lacklustre remarks in relation to the introduction of 2+1 road programmes.
"The continued use of 2 + 1 roads, from a road safety perspective, is a dangerous substitute for dual carriageways. Both Road Agencies, the National Roads Authority (NRA) and the Roads Service NI must take more than a friendly stay in touch approach to devising an overarching transport plan.
"The EuroRap report suggests that 80% of accidents are attributable to low - medium risk road networks. These 2 + 1 capital works projects are an excuse for not putting in place the type of infrastructure that is required throughout urban and rural Ireland.
Working as part of the Sinn Fein electoral team to assist with Meath County Cllr. Joe Reilly's By-election, the Sinn Fein spokesperson commented on the impact of transport on all communities.
"I am amazed to see so much construction in Meath; the problems facing the people of Meath are not dissimilar to those facing people all over the country. The infrastructure must be planned to incorporate building communities and catering the needs of the disabled, children, commuters, tourists and all transport users." ENDS