Athlone rail underpass to be installed over Easter weekend

Story by Adrian Cusack

Thursday, 11th April, 2019 4:30pm

Athlone rail underpass to be installed over Easter weekend

Work taking place on the new Greenway underpass at Montree, Athlone, on Monday. Photo: Ann Hennessy

The Easter train line closure in Athlone will last for three and a half days, Irish Rail has confirmed.

Trains will cease operating in the town towards the end of next week in order to allow for the installation of the €4m Greenway underpass beneath the railway line in Montree.

The new piece of infrastructure is designed to be a significant long-term asset for cyclists and pedestrians, but it will bring short-term disruption for commuters who are planning to travel by train over the Easter bank holiday weekend.

An Irish Rail spokesperson told the Westmeath Independent the line closure in Athlone would last all day on Good Friday (April 19), Easter Saturday, Easter Sunday and "up to lunchtime" on the bank holiday Monday.

As a result, train passengers will be provided with bus transfers between Tullamore and Athlone, and between Athlone and Ballinasloe or Roscommon.

The line closure has been planned for several months and work has been taking place on site since early January. 

The new underpass will form part of the Greenway's extension from the White Gates on the Ballymahon Road to the banks of the River Shannon at Athlone Marina. 

Jons Civil Engineering Ltd is the contractor carrying out the work and it has been constructing the underpass structure on site in advance of its installation.

To date, Westmeath County Council has only been granted funding for the underpass itself, but it's expected that funding will be provided to allow the remainder of the work between the White Gates and the Marina be completed before the end of this year.

“We're hopeful that we can get it done before the end of the year. The rest of this section will only be a fraction of the cost of the underpass itself,” said council official Barry Kehoe in January.


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