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Ambitious Public Transport Plan for Wicklow

Green Party TD for Wicklow Steven Matthews on launching his ambitious transport plan for Wicklow Town to Bray has said “It’s time for urgency, delivery and joined up thinking for public transport and active travel, cycling and walking for Bray to Greystones to Kilcoole to Newtownmountkennedy to Newcastle to Wicklow and Rathnew. I have an ambitious proposal, funding is available, and I am pushing acceleration in the construction of better transport and greater options for thousands of residents along this route”.

“This plan will see an electric train service to Wicklow Town with stops at Kilcoole, Newcastle and Greystones South. There will be connected cycling and walking routes from each location to the electric train service. There will also be a coastal trail which avoids the sensitive ecological areas for recreation for residents and visitors linking the coastal towns and public transport stops. The plan also allows for connectivity between Kilcoole and Newtownmountkennedy and for a dedicated link from Rathnew to Wicklow Railway Station”.

“Minister Eamon Ryan recently called on the local authorities to think bigger and act faster on delivery of active travel and launched the ‘Pathfinder’ proposal. My proposal perfectly fits this call for vision, ambition, and delivery of integrated transport options for Wicklow residents”.

“I am working with the Department of Transport, the National Transport Authority, Transport Infrastructure Ireland and Wicklow County Council to deliver the various aspects of this integrated travel plan over the next 2 years which will be a gamechanger for transport in the area”.

“The transport plan is divided into three interconnected objectives consisting of Active Travel links to public transport, an Electrified rail service including extra railway stations and a Coastal amenity trail”.

“This will require coordination and cooperation between different transport agencies but having continuously engaged with all the stakeholders I am confident it will have support and necessary funding. This will deliver a transport system to reduce car dependency, reduce emissions and offer Wicklow residents the public and active transport options they need but that have been neglected and ignored for many years”, concluded Deputy Matthews.

Notes for Editor

1. Active Travel to connect towns to public transport

Provide a safe cycle path from Kilcoole Town to Kilcoole Railway Stop.

Provide a safe cycle path from Newcastle to Newcastle Railway Stop.

Provide a safe cycling & walking route from Charlesland to a new Sth Greystones Railway Stop.

Further provision for active travel link from Kilcoole to Newtownmountkennedy.

Provide safe cycle path from Kilcoole to Newcastle (avoids most sensitive location on coastal route).

Provide dedicated active travel route from Rathnew to Wicklow Railway Station

These active travel routes will provide clear and safe access for commuters, students and recreational and community access to North Wicklow and Dublin area via an improved frequency electrified rail service to Wicklow Town with extra stops.

2. Electrified rail service to Wicklow Town including extra railway stations

Provide an electrified rail service between Greystones and Wicklow Town served by a battery electric train (Battery Electrical Multiple Unit BEMU, due in service 2025).

Construct an extra rail stop at Greystones South/Charlesland with an active travel link to Charlesland area and improve the existing rail stop at Kilcoole and re-open a stop at Newcastle. (all stops are served by an active travel link to population/town centres provided for in point 1)

Provide an electric train charger in Wicklow Town Railway Station

3. Coastal Trail Recreational Amenity– East Coast Trail Greystones to Wicklow

I have worked with the Department of Transport to secure the funding for the coastal trail proposed between Greystones and Wicklow Town to proceed to Environmental Impact Assessment, detailed design and planning stage. There are ecologically sensitive Natura sites on the coastal route especially between Kilcoole and Newcastle which may need to be avoided.

The route between Greystones and Kilcoole is the easiest to complete and could proceed relatively quickly on an existing coastal path and link to the active travel link to Kilcoole in point 1.

The next coastal section, Kilcoole to Newcastle (ecologically sensitive, Tern colony, Birdwatch Ireland sanctuary and SAC) should be avoided and connectivity could be provided by off- road or other land route.

The remaining coastal section Newcastle to Wicklow is also part of the SAC but may it be possible to provide a coastal trail. An active travel link from Newcastle to re-opened rail stop is provided for in points 1 & 2.

The proposal provides for recreational access along the scenic coastal route between Greystones and Wicklow whilst accounting for avoidance of most ecologically sensitive locations.

There is ongoing work to connect Dun Laoghaire’s coastal route via Shangannagh development, Bray former Golf Club lands development, Bray Harbour railway underpass, Bray Seafront, on to R761 segregated cycle path to Greystones.

The entire route from Bray North to Wicklow & Rathnew is attractive to visitors and residents alike, it links towns and provides economic return and provides access to the route via public transport at multiple points.

The active travel link to Kilcoole Rail Stop should be extended to Newtownmountkennedy to the ‘Mountains to Sea’ route for a cycling walking trail linking several settlements on route to Roundwood. There is also good access to way marked and hill walking routes across Wicklow from several points and proposed railway stops.



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