Western Transport Corridor
from Killarney to Letterkenny urged by
Wednesday Februry 11th 2004
In its latest submission to Government, the IEI has
called for the development of a Western Transport Corridor
and is also backing the establishment of a single,
all-island energy market.
The Government has been urged to begin planning a quality
Western Transport Corridor from Killarney to Letterkenny
similar to the Eastern Corridor which, on completion of the
current National Development Plan, will see high quality
road and rail linkages running from Belfast to Rosslare.
This call has come from the Institution of Engineers of
Ireland which says this Western Corridor is critical to
achieving key objectives of the National Spatial Strategy
such as balanced regional development, and countering the
social and economic pull of the Greater Dublin Area.
"Without such linkage, the NSS will remain just another
strategy without substance and much of the western half of
the country will become more and more unsustainable as
Dublin pulls investment and population to itself", according
to the Institution's director general, Mr. Paddy
The proposal is made in submissions to the Government and
the Northern Ireland Administration on "Delivering
Sustainability", which also focuses on a number of
all-island issues including energy policy. The IEI wants an
all-Ireland EU Energy Region established with a single
energy market and a single regulator.
"There would be distinct benefits, from both an
environmental and a customer viewpoint, North and South, in
treating the energy market on the island as a single
integrated market technically, operationally and
economically", according to Mr. Purcell.
The submission also deals with the implications of global
warming and the likely impact of climate change in Ireland,
including sea level rises and increased frequency of extreme
"Decisions about what crops to grow, what landscapes to
protect, where to build transport corridors in coastal
zones, how we design and maintain our water and sewerage
infrastructure, and - perhaps most importantly of all -
where to build new residential areas urgently require to be
'climate change proofed'", the IEI submission says.
The Institution of Engineers also calls for a review of
physical planning policies, and in particular the
replacement of "green belts" with what it terms "green
wedges" or "green lungs". The IEI claims that green belts
"are not compatible with transport corridors if maximum
benefit is to be gained from the infrastructure