Deputy Joe McHugh
Fine Gael TD, Joe McHugh, has announced that the government has approved €15M in funding to finally rectify the ‘Blue Banks’ road on the N56.
Tenders for the construction of the road between Coolboy and Kilmacrennan will be issued in the coming weeks, Minister McHugh said.
It follows a case made to Government by the Donegal Deputy that a new water main from Lough Salt to Letterkenny should be constructed by Irish Water at the same time as a new road.
Joining the two schemes and fast-tracking the new road will save taxpayers’ money.
Cycle lanes in both directions will be included in the reconstruction and upgrade of the 3.15km stretch of road.
Minister McHugh has received confirmation his lobbying for the road has paid off.
“I am absolutely delighted with this news and I am delighted to be in a position as Government Minister to announce it,” said Minister McHugh.
“This busy section of road serves north and west Donegal including Glenveagh National Park, Gaoth Dobhair, Creeslough, Rosgoill, Dunfanaghy, Falcarragh and the Wild Atlantic Way.
“Funding of €12.56 Million has been allocated for the new road with another €2.71 Million for Irish Water to replace both the existing principle water supply from Lough Salt to Letterkenny and the distribution mains for the entire area including Rathmullan.
“This scheme will finally remove the notorious ‘Blue Banks’ bends from the N56.
“Donegal is playing catch-up with the rest of the country. Everyone knows that. I am determined that under this Government Donegal gets its fair share of infrastructure spending.”
Minister McHugh thanked Minister Shane Ross, Transport Infrastructure Ireland, Irish Water and the National Roads division of Donegal County Council for their vision for the project.
The Donegal Fine Gael TD added: “Completing these projects in tandem will save money, time and inconvenience to road users. The new water main will be completed in 2019 with the road works going on at the same time.
“Tender documents are ready subject to a few minor amendments and the road works will go out to tender in the next couple of months.
“This is a great day for Donegal. This will help to create jobs in the construction phase, and just like at Cockhill Bridge, I am hopeful local sub-contractors will be involved with a great deal of the work."