MetroLink alone will not fly in solving airport rail problems


With all the discussion surrounding the potential €20 billion price tag for the Swords to Charlemont MetroLink via Dublin Airport, one point seems to be missing from the media and commentators.

arnród Éireann proposed linking Dublin airport to the long-distance network at a cost of around €500m today. It would also have solved the capacity problems between Connolly Station and Clongriffin, which slow Belfast and freight trains to a crawl as they are forced to follow stopped Dart trains into the city centre.

The proposed Dart+ Coastal North program does not attempt to solve this capacity problem, which is slowing Belfast Enterprise trains and will result in even slower timetables for what should be the island’s leading intercity rail service.

Can we please stop considering MetroLink as the only option for connecting Dublin Airport to the city center by rail? We can and should have both MetroLink and mainline rail services at the airport as they have at Manchester Airport. MetroLink is for commuters from Swords and North Dublin to connect to the city centre. The heavy rail link would be of national importance as rail services from all over Ireland could be connected directly to Dublin Airport. I would go so far as to say that if Eamon Ryan were to direct the National Transport Authority to order Iarnród Éireann to build the link tomorrow, we would have a rail link to and from the island of Ireland’s busiest port of entry well before MetroLink opened and to a fraction of
the costs.

Richard Loge

Mill Hill, London, UK

Why critics of Ryan look a little green

Fionnán Sheahan praises the Healy-Raes for beating up Eamon Ryan, but the reality is a little more nuanced (“House of Healy-Rae has a lot to teach Ryan about how to play on all sides of the green gallery”, Irish Independent, August 1). As told by local Fine Gael fan Frank Quilter The Kerryman In 2019 it was “Phil Hogan who helped approve the funding, he spent years as Minister trying to move the project forward”.

While Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil are more than happy to keep Eamon Ryan floundering in the media wars, the reality on the ground often goes a step too far for journalists anxious to continue perpetuating populist narratives.

Tom McElligott

Listowel, County Kerry

Sabina’s letter about Ukraine was relevant to Ireland’s past

The letter “The President’s wife has overstepped the mark with the Ukraine letter” (Irish IndependentAugust 1) reminded me of the ballad’s lyrics: “She got out, I got back in, I got out and she got back in and … they jumped on his whistles, bellows, whistles and all … and that made Lanigan’s ball a.” End”.

The suggestion that President Higgins should resign because his wife Sabina wrote publicly to a newspaper on an issue relevant to Ireland’s past is disproportionate if not as humorous as the texts in the Lanigan’s ball Ballad.

The Ukraine conflict arose out of the West’s refusal to engage in any serious dialogue with the Russian Federation, ignoring or ignoring its security concerns. The same misguided Western mindset applies to what is happening in relation to China. If I may turn your attention to Ireland (or Cuba for that matter) and the lessons that could be drawn from Ireland’s relationship with Britain (or America in the case of Cuba) which parallels what is happening in Taiwan and Ukraine.

For example, due to Ireland’s western proximity to Britain, certain of Britain’s European rivals – Spain and France – formed strategic alliances with the Irish in hopes of containing the British. The latter considered such alliances unacceptable and conquered and subdued Ireland; to the north (presumably because it was closer to Britain) they uprooted and expelled the native Irish population and replaced them with British. The consequences of this action are still having an impact today.

Michael O’Cathail


Édaein’s infectious pride in the kingdom is well founded

Édaein O’Connell’s piece from last Saturday (“Power of community helps us all lift up”) is a gem. So powerful yet simple that the topic of the article is obviously heartfelt.

The Irish Seanfhocail is so appropriate here – Is ar scáth a chéile a mhaireann na daoine.

Édaein is our Kerry Rose and we are immensely proud of her as our Representative and as ‘one of us’. She’s already brought so much fun and style to the Kingdom – and having the gift of expressing that and her pride in her community is a bonus indeed.

Éacht mór déanta ag Édaein cheana féin!

Aodán O Murchú

Lios Tuathail, Co. Ciarraí MetroLink alone will not fly in solving airport rail problems

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