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Government Announces Commencement of Construction of New Louth Narrow Water Bridge

Taoiseach Simon Harris, Tánaiste Micheál Martin and Minister Malcolm Noonan will today (4 June) visit the site of the long-anticipated Narrow Water Bridge in County Louth to announce that construction is commencing. They will be joined by Northern Ireland Minister for Infrastructure John O’Dowd MLA.

The landmark Narrow Water Bridge is a longstanding commitment of the Government, reflected in the Programme for Government and New Decade, New Approach agreement. An allocation of €102m + VAT is being made from the Shared Island Fund for the contract to deliver this project.

This ambitious infrastructure project will provide new tourism and connectivity potential to the east border region and is anticipated to aid local economic development by increasing employment levels and visitor footfall. It will be a lynchpin connection for cross-border active travel and recreational activities in the Carlingford Lough region including greenways, mountain bike trails, walking routes and beaches.

When complete, the 195m cable-stayed bridge will connect Cornamucklagh near Omeath, Co Louth with Narrow Water near Warrenpoint, Co. Down, providing a direct link between the Mourne Mountains and the Cooley Peninsula, where Carlingford Lough meets the Newry River. It is designed for vehicular, cycle and pedestrian traffic and will connect the A2 Newry to Warrenpoint dual carriageway with the R173 Omeath. It will also have the ability to open to allow for the passage of ships through and onto the Newry Canal.

Tánaiste Micheál Martin said, “When I first established the Shared Island Unit in the Department of the Taoiseach, there was one project that was always front and centre of my mind – the Narrow Water Bridge. This project is a clear physical manifestation of the philosophy underpinning Shared Island. It embodies our ambition for reconciliation, a closer relationship between North and South, and progress. Today is the realisation of a vision long shared across this stretch of water, delivering on the desire of both communities to reach out, to connect and to grow together.”

Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage Darragh O’Brien TD said, “In linking the Mourne Mountains in Co. Down with the Cooley Peninsula in Co. Louth, this bridge will serve not just as a physical infrastructure project but as a symbol of community, togetherness and hope. It is funded by the Shared Island Fund, and it embodies the vision, values, and purpose of that fund perfectly.”

Minister of State Malcolm Noonan TD said, “The project is already creating new opportunities and deepening connections between communities on both sides of the border. It is a testament to Louth County Council and officials in my own department and one that will endure as an outstretched hand of friendship between communities.”

Chief Executive of Louth County Council Joan Martin said, “I am delighted to welcome the commencement of works at the Narrow Water Bridge site, a project which will provide an unprecedented boost to the cross-border region as a whole. It has been a long-standing strategic priority for Louth County Council, which will deliver a key piece of infrastructure, improving access to the wealth of tourist attractions we have in this area. This historic bridge will stand as a symbol of the connections that bind communities north and south.”

(Source: Department of the Taoiseach)

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