Government Must Show More Ambition For The West And Reopen The Western Rail Corridor – MacManus
Sinn Féin MEP Chris MacManus has said that the Government must show more ambition for the West of Ireland and reopen the Western Rail Corridor. The Midlands Northwest representative was speaking after attending last weekend’s conference on regional development hosted by West on Track at the Ard Rí House Hotel in Tuam, Co Galway.
MEP MacManus said:
“I want to commend West on Track for organising this event. There was a very impressive line-up of speakers, each of whom have considerable expertise in different aspects of regional development, and their contributions were very informative and insightful. It was fantastic to see such a large crowd of over 250 people in attendance, including representatives from all political parties and none.”
“The West and Northwest are lagging behind the rest of the country and we need critical infrastructure and public services like the Western Rail Corridor if we are to reverse the decline of our region and attract new business and investment, as highlighted by the various speakers. A reopened Western Rail Corridor would link every key population centre in the West to the rest of the country, enable more people to commute sustainably and can play a crucial role in the development of Knock Airport as a major transport and logistics hub.”
“We know from Dr John Bradley’s report that the reopening of the Western Rail Corridor is achievable and can happen in a very short period of time if the political will is there. While we hope that the all-island rail review recommends it’s reopening, it is our firm view that the justification already exists for the reopening of the line and that no more reports or analyses are needed. That is why in our alternative budget for this year Sinn Féin provided for initial capital funding to kickstart the Western Rail Corridor project.”
“At European level I am working to ensure that the West of Ireland is restored to the TEN-T Core Network, so that critical infrastructure projects like this can benefit from EU funding, allowing us to direct more investment to communities across the West and Northwest where it is badly needed.”
“It is time for the Government to take regional development seriously, show more ambition for the West and reopen the Western Rail Corridor.” ENDS