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The DART+ West programme would see the Maynooth rail line electrified Sam Boal/
Public Transport

Dart+ West project is approved by Government and will enter planning system in 2022

The final cost of the project is set to be between €969 million and €1.1 Billion

THE DART+ WEST programme, which would see rail link improvements to Maynooth and infrastructure upgrades at both Connolly and the Docklands, has been approved by the Government.

The plan, which is funded under the National Development Plan, will also see the Maynooth line electrified and a new rail depot built near Maynooth to house additional Dart trains.

Approval of the project will see it move into the statutory planning system, with Iarnród Éireann currently considering submissions received during a recent public consultation process.

Iarnród Éireann are set to apply to An Bord Pleanála for a Railway Order in 2022.

The Dart+ West project is part of the Government’s overall Dart+ programme, which will see the length of the Dart network increase from 50km to 150km and double the passenger capacity to 52,000 people per hour.

The final budget and delivery schedule for Dart+ West will not be known until later on in the planning process, with the Government estimating its cost at between €969 million and €1.1 Billion.

The overall Dart+ plan will see rail lines to Drogheda and Hazelhatch electrified to allow for the Dart, as well as improvements to the existing Dart line to Greystones, like the removal of level crossings.

Transport Minister Eamon Ryan said that it was a “hugely significant decision” and that it will help transform public transport.

“This is a tangible demonstration of progress, which will transform public transport and help us meet our climate goals,” said Ryan.

“Dart+ will double capacity and triple the length of the commuter network in the Greater Dublin Area.

“Dart+ West, which will electrify the line to Maynooth is the first step and will also facilitate the  development of the entire programme.”

Anne Graham, CEO of the National Transport Authority welcomed approval of the Dart+ project, saying that it will improve service frequency for those who use the Dart.

“Under Dart+, passenger capacity and service frequency will be vastly improved for people across the rail network in the Greater Dublin Area,” said Graham.

There are a total of five seperate projects within the Dart+ programme: Dart+ Fleet, Dart+ West, Dart+ South West, Dart+ Coastal North and Dart+ Coastal South.

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