Date Published: 11-May-2011
By Declan Tierney
The much delayed Gort to Tuam motorway has been thrown a lifeline – a Spanish based consortium has approached the National Roads Authority expressing an interest in constructing the 57 kilometre stretch and work could commence by the end of the year.
It has been learned by The Connacht Tribune that it is the same building company that built the M6 motorway from Galway to Ballinasloe which was opened in early 2010.
FCC Construction, which has its base in Madrid, have written to the National Roads Authority expressing an interest in constructing the M17/M18 motorway along with the Tuam bypass.
Last autumn the NRA announced that the consortium of BAM Beatty Balfour were the preferred consortium to construct the motorway from Gort to Tuam but it emerged that finance became a major issue and the signing of contracts was delayed on no fewer than six occasions.
It is understood that the financial backers were ‘jittery’ about investing in a country with a sovereign debt and were worried about being paid back for the project over a 20 year period.
The National Roads Authority then spoke to two other consortia who had tendered for the project, which will cost in the region of €500 million. But both of these are understood to have difficulty raising the finance for the project.
Much to the relief of the NRA, they received correspondence from FCC Construction offering to build the motorway – this company has made €1 billion in profits over the past year from lucrative capital projects across Europe.
But before any contracts can be signed with FCC, the NRA must put the M17/M18 motorway project out to tender again and seek expressions of interest from construction companies. In the current economic climate, the Spanish company are likely to be the only respondents.
.Already, the Government has spent in the region of €120 million on the motorway project, with the vast majority of this going on the compulsory acquisition of lands along the route.
Read more in today’s Connacht Tribune
Galway ‘Park and Ride’ could become permanent
Date Published: 07-May-2013
A park ‘n’ ride scheme from Carnmore into Galway city could become a permanent service if there is public demand.
That’s according to the Chief Executive of Galway Chamber of Commerce, Michael Coyle.
The pilot scheme will begin at 7.20 next Monday morning, May 13th.
Motorists will be able to park cars at the airport carpark in Carnmore and avail of a bus transfer to Forster Street in the city.
Buses will depart every 20 minutes at peak times and every 30 minutes at offpeak times throughout the day, at a cost of 2 euro per journey.
Tuam awaits UK hay import as overnight rainfall adds to fodder crisis
Date Published: 09-May-2013
Tuam is now awaiting a third import of hay from the UK as overnight rainfall has increased pressure on farmers struggling to source fodder.
A total of ten loads are expected at Connacht Gold stores throughout the West with a load expected at the Airglooney outlet this evening or tomorrow.
Farmers throughout the county have been struggling to cope with the animal feed shortage and a below than normal grass growth due to unseasonal weather conditions.
Overnight rainfall in the Galway area has also added to the problem making ground conditions in many areas are quite poor.
Joe Waldron, Agricultual Advisor with Connacht Gold says farmers in short supply can contact the Airglooney outlet on 093 – 24101.
Transport Minister urges end to Bus Eireann strike action
Date Published: 12-May-2013
The Transport Minister is urging drivers at Bus Éireann to engage in talks with management, in an effort to bring their strike action to an end.
There were no Bus Éireann services operating out of Galway today as a result of nationwide strike action by staff affiliated with the national bus and rail union.
Up to 20 Bus Éireann drivers are continuing to picket outside the bus depot at the docks in the city this evening.
Drivers from other unions have decided not to cross the picket line and go into work today – causing the disruption to be even worse.
Bus drivers are protesting against five million euro worth of cuts to their overtime and premium pay – cuts which Bus Eireann says are vital to ensure the future viability of the company.
The majority of services nationwide are disrupted, and the union say strike action will continue until management are willing to go back into negotiations.
However, it’s not expected to affect school services next week.
Galway bay fm news understands that around 70 percent, or over 100 Galway bus Eireann drivers are affiliated with the NBRU.