Tuesday 16 October 2007

Council strikes €141m deal with consortium for 'new town' plan

Agreement has been reached for €141m worth of infrastructure -- including a link road to the M1 motorway -- for the expansion of Drogheda.

The North Drogheda Environs Group (NDEG), which consists of a number of property developers, including Manor Park Homes and Euro Construction, own 90pc of the 254 hectare landbank that makes up the Drogheda North Environs local area plan.

Under the package agreed between the NDEG and the council, a 30 acre regional sports campus, as well as significant upgrades of Drogheda's water and waste water infrastructure, will also be provided.

However, the construction of the port access northern cross road, between the M1 motorway on the northside of Drogheda and Drogheda Port, is the most significant piece of infrastructure included in the deal.

The new road will remove over 3,000 heavy goods vehicles which currently drive through Drogheda town centre on a daily basis.


In the past, the trucks making their way from the port have used rat runs through residential areas.

The environmental impact statement for the road is in draft form at the moment but will be published before the end of the month and will, with the compulsory purchase order, be submitted to An Bord Pleanala.

If an oral hearing is held by the board it could delay the start of construction, but the council is hopeful that it will begin next year and the road could be open for use in 2010.

A number of planning applications have been lodged with the council in the past two months for various developments in the Drogheda north environs.

At yesterday's council meeting, director of services for infrastructure, Joan Martin, told councillors that there would be no development of the lands by the consortium until work on the road starts.

"I assure members that the legal agreement will contain all the items contained in the master plan as agreed by you.

"The road will be built as a single contract and no development can commence until the road has commenced," she said.

Irish Independent

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