Public Consultation for N2 Clontibret to Northern Ireland Border Road Scheme- DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSIONS 31 AUG

The N2 Slane bypass is a small section of an overall plan to build a single M2 motorway, the M2/A5, from Dublin to Derry in Northern Ireland. So far, the M2 motorway from Dublin to Ashbourne, Co. Meath, has been completed. The rest of the road is in various stages of development.

Save Newgrange group supports the Don’t Bypass the Bypass Campaign, and is encouraging the public to participate in the public consultation for the N2 Clontibret to Northern Ireland road scheme, by emailing objections to mcdonal@monaghancoco.ie before 31 August 2010.

We are also supporting the Alternative A5 Alliance, which is objecting to plans for the A5 Western Transport Corridor, which is the N2, from the border to Derry. Public consultation for that project is also under way, and information can be gotten from a5consultation@mouchel.com.

Objections to the N2 Slane bypass

Save Newgrange has objected to the N2 Slane Bypass on various substantive legal grounds, relating to the impact on Bru na Boinne World Heritage Site (which contains the Battle of the Boyne Site) and EU candidate Special Areas of Conservation (SAC), which is also protected by the Ramsar Convention. Other procedural objections relate to flawed public consultation, which was wrongfully limited to the Republic of Ireland. The N2 Dublin to Derry is a single road, which crosses the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland and becomes the A5 Western Transport Corridor.

“Starting at Aughnacloy on the Monaghan border, [the A5] slices its way through virgin countryside to join up with other schemes at Newbuildings, on the edge of Londonderry/Derry, and branches across into Letterkenny and East Donegal. With a total length of 55 miles it will be the longest single road project ever undertaken in Northern Ireland.” – see Slugger O’Toole, Information on the ongoing public consultation for the A5 is available from the Northern Ireland roads service.

Grounds for Objections to the N2 Clontibret to Northern Ireland Border Road Scheme


Click here to download detailed copy of Route Options map

Grounds for objections by Save Newgrange to the Clontibert scheme (and the A5 scheme) include:

Specifically, we object on grounds that the N2 Dublin to Derry is a single road, with transboundary effects, that has been the subject of ‘project-splitting‘. A single public consultation, involving both Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland authorities should have been held for the entire cross-border road, from Dublin to Derry, rather than subdividing it into sub-sections.

The public should to make submissions to Monaghan County Council, before 31 August 2010. Email your submission to Con McCrossan, Senior Engineer, cmcross@monaghancoco.ie C/O Leona McDonal mcdonal@monaghancoco.ie

[The following is the text of the Guide to Public Consultation, by Monaghan County Council]

N2 Clontibret to Northern Ireland Border Road Scheme

Route Corridor Options – Public Consultation – July 2010

Need for the Scheme

The N2 National Primary Route is a strategic corridor which links Dublin to Northern Ireland and the border counties. The N2 joins the A5 route at the border to provide linkage with Derry and Donegal. The N2 also links many towns and villages along its route. Transport 21, the capital investment framework for transport development over the period 2006 to 2015, identifies this section of the N2 as a strategic route to be upgraded.

Benefits of the Scheme

This Scheme will:

  • Improve road safety;
  • Reduce travel times;
  • Reduce congestion and traffic volumes, particularly in Emyvale and around Monaghan Town;
  • Improve access between Donegal, Monaghan and Dublin, facilitating business, trade and tourism; and
  • Improve links between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

Consultation Objectives

Following on from the first public consultation held in July 2009 for the Constraints Study, the main objectives of the second public consultation are:

  • Increase public awareness in the Scheme;
  • Present the route corridor options which are being considered;
  • Allow early involvement of the public in developing the proposals;
  • Highlight the key factors which play a role in the choice of route options; and
  • Explain what happens next.

The information displayed at the consultation event will also be available to view and download on the Monaghan County Council website www.monaghan.ie.

Route Corridor Development

The development of route corridors forms part of a 3-stage route selection process as prescribed by the National Roads Authority (NRA) Project Management Guidelines (2010):

  • Stage 1 – Preliminary Options Assessment
  • Stage 2 – Project Appraisal of Route Options
  • Stage 3 – Selection of Preferred Route Corridor

The purpose of this process is to review the feasible route corridors at increasing levels of detail resulting in the selection of the Preferred Route Corridor for the Scheme. During Stage 1 feasible route corridors were identified and developed whilst avoiding significant constraints identified during the Constraints Study. The assessment of the preliminary options utilised the criteria of Engineering, Environment and Economy. This resulted in the number of options being refined to 4 primary corridors (coloured yellow, green, red and blue) along with 7 further composite corridor options generated through cross over links (shown in purple).

Please consider the route corridors shown overleaf along with the information on display and let your views be known.

Route Corridor Options

It is proposed to realign the N2 over a distance of approximately 28km between the recently constructed N2 Clontibret to Castleblaney ‘2+1’ Scheme to the south of Monaghan Town and the Northern Ireland border to the north in the vicinity of Aughnacloy.

Route corridor options have been identified commencing from the existing roundabout on the N2 at Clontibret in the townland of Kilcrow. From this point the corridors run in a northerly direction passing east or west of Castleshane (depending on the option). Continuing northwards the corridors cross the N12 and Ulster Canal east of Monaghan Town. Further north, the corridors cross the River Blackwater and the disused Ulster Railway to the east of the existing N2. The corridors then pass to the east of Corracrin and the west of Glaslough. From here the red and blue corridors run west of Emyvale whilst the green and yellow corridors pass east of Emy Lough. All the corridors cross the Mountain Water near Emyvale where after they converge at the termination point on the Northern Ireland border in the vicinity of Aughnacloy.

What Happens Next?

A detailed route selection study will commence and the route corridors being presented here will be assessed in accordance with the Stage 2 Project Appraisal procedure using the 5 common appraisal criteria of:

  • Economy;
  • Safety;
  • Environment;
  • Accessibility & Social Inclusion; and
  • Integration.

A Preferred Route Corridor has not been identified at this stage. It is envisaged that the Stage 2 appraisal will be complete by the end of 2010 at which time the Preferred Route Corridor will be announced and a public display will be held. It must be emphasised that the Preferred Route Corridor may be one of the proposed route corridors, an amalgamation of parts from more than one route option or an altered alignment involving one or more options.

Your Views are Important

Monaghan County Council wishes to consider all viewpoints in relation to the Scheme and the route corridors being examined. This is your opportunity to take part in the planning of the N2 Clontibret to Northern Ireland Border Road Scheme and your time spent on communicating your views would be appreciated. Detailed consideration shall be given to the comments and submission received.

Please examine the route corridors and let your views be known. You can either complete the accompanying comment sheet or write to the address shown using the freepost envelope provided by 7th August 2010.

All submissions received are a matter of public record, and as such are liable to be accessed and inspected by any member of the public under the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 1997 & 2003.

The Act, however, provides that such a record may be exempt from disclosure and access, if there is an understanding between the local authority and you, that the information supplied is given in confidence and on the understanding that it would be treated as confidential. If you wish to have your submission treated in this manner please clearly indicate this using the selection box provided on the comment sheet.

Further Enquiries on the N2 Clontibret to the border scheme:

All queries, questionnaires or comments in relation to this project may be addressed to:

Con McCrossan
Monaghan County Council
Roads Department (N2 Clontibret to NI Border),
Mtek 2 Building,
Knockaconny,
Monaghan,
Co. Monaghan
Tel. +353 (0)47 30558
cmcross@monaghancoco.ie
C/O Leona McDonal mcdonal@monaghancoco.ie

PUBLIC CONSULTATION DOCUMENTATION – MONAGHAN COUNTY COUNCIL

1st Public Consultation

Please see below documentation to download (pdf format) relating to the first public consulation. Some original files are large and it is advised only to download them if you have broadband access.

Brochure & Comments Sheet

Maps & Further information

  1. Master Study Area (pdf 20MB) (broadband recommended)
  2. Need and Benefits (pdf 70kb)
  3. Constraints Study Report (pdf 120kb)
  4. Environmental Constraints (pdf 15MB) (broadband recommended)
  5. Route Corridor Options Development (pdf 99kb)
  6. Route Corridor Options (Discovery Series) (pdf 19.9MB) (broadband recommended)
  7. Route Corridor Options (Aerial Photo) (pdf 2.8MB)
  8. What Happens Next (pdf 73kb)

Don’t Bypass the Bypass

Press Release: 16th August 2010

Irish State will pay close to €1billion for 25km of unnecessary Motorway

A major public information campaign, Don’t Bypass the Bypass, is raising awareness of a proposed major infrastructural project which will cost close to €1billion of Irish Taxpayers money. We are calling on the Government to exercise commonsense leadership and stop this flawed road project before any more money is wasted.

The project relates to a proposed 25km Motorway from North Monaghan (Clontibret) to the Border (at Aughnacloy Co Tyrone),announced by Mr Bertie Ahern in 2007 as part of the N2 Dual Carriageway initiative from Derry to Dublin. Our concerns with this project are as follows;

  • · Large sections of the N2 have recently undergone major road improvements and towns along the route have already been by-passed. The new road is expected to replace a 32km section of road of which:
  • 13km is excellent quality highway,
  • 3km is a brand new Monaghan Town Bypass (costing €26 million) and completed in 2006.
  • The remaining 14km section (Monaghan/Emyvale Bypass to Aughnacloy) was granted planning permission in 2004 and substantial consultancy work has been carried out on this proposed roadway. It was expected to cost €50 million. The project would now seem to be shelved.
    • This new road proposal will bypass the recent Monaghan Town Bypass.
    • €500million (£400stg million) was pledged by the Irish Government to the Northern Ireland Executive to improve the northern section of the Derry – Dublin route with no return to the Irish exchequer.
    • The proposed stretch of road will carve through complicated ‘Drumlin’ country costing up to €12 million/km –a total of €300 million before taking account of any budget overruns.
    • No official costings or cost benefit analysis have been published to justify this expenditure.
    • This proposed project is being advanced at a vigorous pace by the Monaghan County Council and Grontmij, Consulting Engineers despite the fact that the country is in the depth of a deep and prolonged recession.
    • Traffic flow analysis taken from the NRA statistics show 8.7% decrease in volumes from peak in 2007 to 2010 on this road. The maximum recorded volumes of 6,029 vechicles/day in 2007 fall well short of 10,000 required to justify investment in a motorway.
    • A new motorway north of the border, linking Ballygawley to Newry and then the
    • M1/Dublin is already the preferred route for Derry/Donegal motorists travelling to Dublin and this will not change even with the proposed new motorway.
    • Householders and families will face eviction and negative equity to facilitate a motorway that is not required.
    • Farming enterprises, including many small holdings will have their lands divided by this proposed roadway and this will adversely affect the viability of the farming unit.
    • Some farmers will lose homes and farm buildings that have been farmed by the family for generations.
    • Consultants have failed to adequately explore the option of utilising and upgrading the existing road framework as outlined in the “Public Consultation in relation to the Constraints Study – July 2009” as per NRA guidelines.
    • Very poor consultation techniques and misleading documentation have kept this project hidden from the general public since 2007.
    • To date, no communication has taken place with landowners/householders and business owners that may be affected.
    • This road, a proposed Dual Carriageway, will connect to large sections of newly constructed Single Carriageway along this route.
    • This proposed road goes through densely populated communities and villages with devastating consequences.
    • This proposed road will have detrimental effects on Monaghan’s tourism industry, its lakes, forests and historic/picturesque villages.
    • Inadequate timeframes have been given to the general public to make informed submissions. Public pressure has resulted in the closing date being extended to 31st Aug 2010.
    • Due to holiday commitments of senior Monaghan County Council Road Section Executives during the month of August, citizens wishing to make enquiries before making their submissions are not getting answers.

    The improvements to the 14km stretch of road (Monaghan/Emyvale bypass to Aughnacloy) were announced by the Government and NRA in September 2006 and heralded by them as ‘the main arterial cross border connection from Derry to Dublin’. It was expected to cost €50m. By 2007 it was shelved in favour of a new motorway project and the cost to the Irish Taxpayer has ballooned to €800 million. This country is in deep recession and the main focus of any Government spending should be Value For Money.

    We are calling on the Irish Government to stop this unnecessary project now and we are urging ALL citizens to respond to a public submissions period by sending their views to:

    Closing date for submissions is 31st Aug 2010

    For further information contact:

    Noel Murphy, Spokesperson; dontbypassthebypass@hotmail.com

    Mobile: 087 6560363

    www.dontbypassthebypass.com
    DBB Facebook

    THE A5 WESTERN TRANSPORT CORRIDOR

    According to the Roads Service of Northern Ireland:

    “The A5 Western Transport Corridor (A5WTC) is the longest single roads project ever undertaken in Northern Ireland. The new route is one of five key transport corridor upgrades identified in the Regional Transportation Strategy (RTS) for Northern Ireland. The scheme also represents a significant link in longer-term plans to improve connections between Dublin, Londonderry and Donegal. The Irish Government have pledged a contribution of £400m to help fund major roads programmes in Northern Ireland, including the A5WTC.

    In July 2009 Transport Minister Conor Murphy announced the Preferred Route for the scheme, marking the achievement of the second key milestone for the project agreed between the Northern Ireland Executive and the Irish Government. Following this, the Minister recently outlined how the project would be moving forward and explained the next important steps:

    “Currently we are gathering information from the landowners on land use and livestock and machinery movements. Most landowners have been helpful in giving ground investigation contractors access to their land to carry out tests. This information will by key in helping the designers reduce landtake, mitigate the impacts on land owners, reduce the footprint of the dual carriageway and help assess the suitability of alternative alignments.”

    “Maintaining access to all areas of their land is essential. Minor realignments of the route are already being considered in response to the information being provided. Public consultation has been and will continue to be, an important part of the scheme developments and all suggestions and comments will continue to be fully considered.”

    The information gathered through future meetings with landowners will inform the development of the Preferred Route to the Emerging Specimen Design, which will be presented at Public Exhibitions in summer 2010. This will be followed by the publication of Draft Statutory Orders and an Environmental Statement in autumn 2010, with a Public Inquiry in 2011. There will also be a formal consultation process in advance of the Public Inquiry, during which all affected parties and others may make comments and lodge objections to the Draft Orders and Environmental Statement. These comments and objections will then be heard at the Public Inquiry in 2011. It is anticipated that work will commence in 2012 and be completed in 2015.

    Further information on the A5 Western Transport Corridor:

    LandAspects
    The Consultation Manager
    Shorefield House
    30 Kinnegar Drive
    Holywood
    County Down
    BTI8
    9JQ

    Telephone 0845 602 6422
    +44 (0)28 9042 3954 (outside UK)

    Email: a5consultation@mouchel.com

    Alternative A5 Alliance statement of purpose

    The group of individuals, formed at a meeting on December 5th 2009, met together for the first time on Saturday January 9th, at the Newtownstewart 2000 Centre.

    The meeting was arranged to involve other interested parties including legal, political and farming interests and a number of concerned members of the public were present. The object of the group—now called the ‘Alternative A5 Alliance’—is to oppose the massive overkill proposal for a limited-access dual carriageway and to propose the sustainable alternative of a 3-lane road from Aughnacloy to L’Derry, coupled with a reinstated railway, from L’Derry to Portadown.

    It was agreed that the present proposals offer an outdated approach to the modern transport needs of the North-West region. The present proposals totally neglect the need to bring transport projects in line with current EU and international thinking and for responsible requirements of cutting CO2 emissions and protecting the environment.

    The Alternative A5 Alliance Committee discussed the following action points:

    • co-ordinating the active opposition to the present wasteful and destructive proposed A5 dualling project;
    • mobilising land-owners, business owners, and householders affected adversely by the proposals;
    • bringing on board environmental groups, animal and wildlife protection, rural amenity and human rights groups to promote the sustainable alternative;
    • putting in place lobby groups to seek political support at the highest level;
    • advising on the legal challenges to be made on the obvious dereliction of legal responsibility by the government authorities pursuing the present damaging proposal;
    • establishing funding for the campaign;
    • seeking a professional consultancy to prepare a report on the actual transport needs of the north-west;
    • providing economic and engineering basis for the sustainable alternative ie. The re-establishment of a modern user-friendly rail link between L’Derry and Portadown and thus with connections to Dublin and Belfast, with all the attendant real economic and environmental benefits and the upgrade of the existing A5 to a 2+1 modern road.
    • organising public information events.

    Support the Alternative A5 Alliance on Facebook

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