Simon Harris criticises suspension of N81 works

Minister for Health Simon Harris has expressed his disappointment with the decision of Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) to suspend planned works on the N81.

On Friday, WicklowNews reported that the planned upgrades to the N81 Tallaght to Hollywood Cross route had been ‘suspended indefinitely’ with TII citing ‘cuts in funding’.

In a press release, Minister Harris said: “I understand that TII has competing priorities however it is vital that our main roads in Wicklow are not left behind.

“The N81 road is in a very poor state and it is priority issue in the Blessington area. There are also plans to increase housing in this area and therefore it is absolutely crucial that we have proper infrastructure to support any development. The road in its current state is not suitable for existing traffic volumes therefore any additional developments would only add to the growing problem.”

According to National Road Authority statistics, the daily average traffic volume on the N81 between Blessington and Tallaght was over 11,000 last year.

So far this year, the daily average traffic volume on the same route is over 10,000.

Minister Harris said that he had communicated his concerns to TII and the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport Shane Ross.

WicklowNews has reached out to Transport Infrastructure Ireland and the Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport for comment.

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