Three additional phases of work on the N56 are set to go to construction between now and mid-2020.
Deputy Pat the Cope Gallagher Leas Cheann Comhairle said he received confirmation from Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) of the project plans.
He said he had highlighted the need to bring the entire N56 to the necessary standard to make it safe and accessible.
Just as importantly, he said the route should be fit for purpose for the traffic volume which use it on a daily basis.
The next phases of N56 which are to go to construction or tender over the next number of months are:
- N56 Frosses Crossroads to Inver Bridge has already a contractor appointed and works will commence in late autumn. This is the second phase of the Turrishill to Inver Bridge upgrade works of the N56, with the first phase already open to traffic. The entire project when both phases are completed will cost €16 million.
- N56 Dungloe to Cloughbolie, tenders are to be sought for this phase of the works in the third quarter of 2019, with a contractor to be appointed after the tendering process is completed.
- N56 Letterilly to Kilraine Junction, TII have indicated to me that tenders are to be invited in the first quarter of 2020. Both this section and the Dungloe to Cloughbolie section are budgeted for in the current capital budget of the TII.
Meantime, a further section of the N56 is to benefit from a pavement and road improvement grant, the section of the N56 Loughanure to Crolly is currently being progressed through the TII pavement programme.
"The works on the N56 are welcome news and will greatly benefit the communities that depend daily on the N56 for their routine life or work," Deputy Gallagher said.
"These projects are a combination of years of lobbying for this improvement works to be carried out; further phases of the N56 must be planned for now, that is in addition to the current works underway and the phases which are to be tendered for.
"The N56 is the lifeline for road access for the entire south and west of Co Donegal, the road is critical for the sustainable development of the entire county but most especially the south and west of Donegal, and as such investment must be continued to be prioritised for the N56 in the years ahead.
"I am impressing upon the TII and Government to proceed and plan the next stages of the N56 Inver to Five Points, Kilraine to Ardara and the next phase of the N56 from Kilmacrennan.
"It is important that advance preparatory works are prepared, as the process of preparing roads for upgrading is a lengthy and time consuming process."