THE provision of a rail spur to Shannon Airport from the Limerick to Ennis rail line is being examined by the National Transport Authority for inclusion in the Limerick-Shannon Metropolitan Area Transport Strategy (LSMATS).

That was the response from Transport Minister Eamon Ryan to a Dáil question from Clare Fine Gael TD Joe Carey who asked when the examination  would get under way.

Deputy Carey, who is chairman of the Oireachtas Committee on Shannon Airport, was told that the issue of a rail spur from Limerick to Shannon Airport is being considered in the context of the (LSMATS).

“The strategy is being developed by the National Transport Authority (NTA) in collaboration with Limerick City and County Council, Clare County Council and Transport Infrastructure Ireland,” Minister Ryan explained.

“A draft strategy was published in September 2020 and was open for public consultation for eight weeks.  Since the conclusion of that public consultation exercise, the NTA has conducted further analytical work to inform the next iteration of the strategy.

“Among the issues raised during the public consultation were issues related to the role of rail in the region, including potential connectivity to Shannon Airport, and that role is under further examination by the NTA for inclusion in a revised draft Strategy. 

“I understand that the NTA intends to undertake a second round of public consultation to cover a revised draft strategy shortly.

“Following receipt of feedback from the second round of public consultation, it is intended to finalise the Strategy and publish it as the completed transport investment framework for the metropolitan area.

“When finalised, the strategy will set out the framework for investment in transport for the Limerick-Shannon Metropolitan Area for the next 20 years including proposals for rail investment,” Minister Ryan added.