The Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government, Eoghan Murphy, TD, today (Wednesday) launched the Donabate Distributor Road which is the first LIHAF project under the Rebuilding Ireland programme to reach the construction stage.
The Minister, along with the Mayor of Fingal, Cllr Mary McCamley, and Fingal County Council Chief Executive, Paul Reid, turned the first sod on the 4km road which will run in an easterly direction from the R126 Hearse Road on the south-west of Donabate village, across the Dublin-Belfast railway line, before heading in a northerly direction to reconnect with the R126 on Portrane Road.
The Donabate Distributor Road is scheduled to take 18 months to complete and will create a much-needed alternative road crossing of the railway line with the construction of a new bridge as well as creating better access to Donabate and Portrane and alleviating traffic congestion in the village. It will also improve access to the strategically important National Forensic Mental Hospital in Portrane when this national facility becomes operational in two years’ time.
The cost of this LIHAF project will be €14.15m with €10.61m (75%) being funded by the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government with match-funding of €3.54m (25%) from Fingal County Council. MEIC Ltd has been appointed as contractors.
The Donabate Distributor Road is part of the Donabate Local Area Plan 2016-2022 which is designed to deliver social and physical infrastructure to the area in order to create sustainable communities. As well as a phased delivery of a wide range of house types and sizes there are also plans for the development of commercial and recreational facilities including the Donabate Recreation Hub, the Broadmeadow Greenway and the Corballis Nature Park.
The Distributor Road will lead to the provision of 1,200 units by 2021 with an anticipated potential build of 2,200 units being provided in the long-term. That figure includes the construction of approximately 1,000 mixed tenure housing units on Council-owned land.
The Minister officially launched this LIHAF scheme at a reception in Donabate Community Centre. He said: “The whole purpose of this scheme that is behind the Donabate Distributor Road is that it is actually about using a small bit of public money to do a bit of both. To do both public housing and private housing together and to open up new lands, open them up more quickly to get these houses built.”
The Mayor of Fingal, Cllr Mary McCamley, said: “Around 3,600 new homes are envisaged within the Donabate Local Area Plan and the new Distributor Road will make a lot of that possible, including 1,000 mixed tenure homes on Council-owned land. The new road will also ease traffic congestion in Donabate village and make access to Portrane, Balcarrick and Corbalis much easier.”
The Chief Executive of Fingal County Council, Paul Reid, said: “This is the first of three LIHAF schemes which we have received approval for and when finished they will facilitate the construction of 6,900 new homes in Donabate, Swords and Baldoyle by the public and private sector. The Distributor Road is a key strategic aim of the Donabate Local Area Plan which provides for the future sustainable growth of the town through the implementation of three phases of development across land parcels located to the north, south, east and west of the existing town centre.”
Last March, Fingal County Council secured LIHAF funding for three strategic projects within the county, with a resulting projected yield of 2,800 housing units by 2021 and long-term potential to facilitate the provision of 6,900 units.
As well as the Donabate Distributor Road investment, €6.18m was allocated for works in the Baldoyle Stapolin area which will lead to 800 housing units by 2021 and 1,500 beyond that. The third Fingal project is the upgrade in the Oldtown-Mooretown area of West Swords which will facilitate 800 housing units initially and 3,200 eventually, for an investment of €4.9m towards a road.