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The N28 Cork Motorway

M28 Motorway - Cork

Irish Examiner Press Statement: "The way has been cleared for one of the biggest infrastructure plans in recent Cork history, the M28 motorway between Cork and Ringaskiddy, after legal challenges to the €250m project reached their end in Irish courts."

In 2018, A group opposed to the construction of the M28 outlined their strategy afterAn Bord Plenala's decision to give the green light to the Cork/Ringaskiddy motorway.

The M28 Steering Group which represents up to 10,000 residents in the area had planned to mount a judicial review to the decision.

Leave to Appeal Promptly Blocked:

A legal challenge had been brought by residents to An Bord Pleanála’s green light for the planned 14km M28 motorway but the High Court (November 2020) refused residents of areas such as Douglas, Maryborough Hill, and Rochestown, known as the M28 Steering Group, leave to bring the case to the Court of Appeal. The last option open to residents was a petition to the Supreme Courtbut it is understood that the highest court in the land has now declined that option.

Government briefed on Road:

The Irish Examiner reported that the Cabinet was briefed on the M28 (possibly by the Minister for Transport) on the 2nd of March last.

30 Million euro Land Preparatory Works:

€30 million land bank preparatory works are ready to begin. Supporters of the motorway say the project will ignite new economic and industrial life in the region by unlocking a major IDA landbank in the area and supporting the Port of Cork's move downriver to Ringaskiddy. This will, in turn, free lands in the city's docklands for development.

Land acquisitions and preparatory works are expected to take three years before the bigger project of the motorway itself begins in 2024. If the planned timeline for construction is then adhered to, the M28 would open in 2027.

Towns Affected by the M28:

10,000 residents in the Maryborough Hill, Rochestown, Carrs Hill, (A Graveyard for thousands who died in Cork during the Great Famine) Bloomfield, (West and probably East), Clarke’s Hill, and the Douglas area, (in 1898, the Cork Electric Tramways and Lighting Company built a route from Cork City to Douglas which operated until 1932) are affected. Noise, traffic, pollution, and environmental damage are some of the issues involved.

Cork Chamber of Commerce: 'Essential piece of infrastructure'

Cork Chamber said the Supreme Court decision is “highly significant” in that it now paves the way for the M28 Ringaskiddy upgrade to move ahead without further delay.

This essential piece of infrastructure, which is of national and regional importance, has been long delayed generating huge frustration. The residents and daily commuters along this corridor can now look forward to infrastructure that is fit for purpose in terms of capacity and safety.

The Cork Chamber of Commerce and the M28:

'We fought the good fight'

No Further Options, according to M28 Steering Group:

Chair of the M28 Steering Group, Ger Harrington, said it was a devastating blow but that the community would accept it. "We left nothing out on the pitch, we fought the good fight, and exercised our constitutional right. The Supreme Court has sided with the Court of Appeal, and we will have to accept that. Our fears are legitimate, but commercial and political factors won out."

Further Appeals?:

According to the Irish Examiner leave to appeal to the European Court of Justice on the matter is not possible.

The M28:

Winding its way through southeast Cork city, the N28 is a modest rural road trying to play it big. It connects the Cork Southern Ring Road, N40, to the port of Ringaskiddy, a terminus that plays a major part in Ireland's pharmaceutical industry. Over the years, the road has come under increasing pressure from lorry traffic generated by the port, as well as suburban development along both sides.

In the coming years, this freight traffic will increase dramatically, as in May 2015 permission was granted by An Bord Pleanala to allow the port of Cork at Tivoli docks to move to an expanded Ringaskiddy. The new location is further out in the estuary and so is more easily accessible by large container ships. The first phase of this move will be completed by 2018.

The Trans-European Network Route:

In 2014 the N28 was designated a Trans-European Network route, which would require it to be upgraded. It was not confirmed at the time whether it would be improved to motorway standard - but at the end of 2015, this was confirmed, with the official launch of the M28. There would be a short section of new single carriageway covering the last mile to Ringaskiddy, where a Motorway Services Area would be provided. The timeline is 2021 to 2024.

Source 1: Way cleared for construction of M28 motorway in Cork - https://www.irishexaminer.com/news/munster/arid-40236191.html

Source 2: National Primary Route 28 -


Source 3: https://www.redfm.ie/news/cork/opposition-to-m28-planning-next-step-against-cork-ringaskiddy-motorway/

Source 4: M28 Cork to Ringaskiddy Project -


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