New N4 road significant milestone for Sligo and the North West Officially Opened by An Taoiseach Micheál Martin, T.D.

Today An Taoiseach Micheál Martin, T.D. will officially open the new N4 Collooney to Castlebaldwin Roads Project in County Sligo. This is one of the first key National Roads Projects to be delivered under Project Ireland 2040’s Regional Connectivity objective.

The new €140 million, 15km Roads Project will significantly improve safety for communities and road users; reduce journey times and improve journey time reliability, between Dublin and Sligo, and make Sligo and the North West more accessible for investment and tourism. It opened to traffic in August 2021.

An Taoiseach, Micheál Martin, T.D. said “This project is about enhancing people’s quality of life. It will significantly improve road safety for local communities and for everyone travelling between Sligo and Dublin. The new road will also be a catalyst for sustainable regional growth and development, encouraging further investment and employment opportunities in Sligo and the North West. It will enhance the quality of life of this community, improving accessibility and making this an even more attractive a destination for investment and a place to work and live.”

Minister of State at the Department of Transport, Hildegarde Naughton, T.D. said “the opening of the N4 today is not only an important milestone for Sligo, the communities and businesses that it serves; so too is it critical from a road safety perspective. Tragically, in the past three decades we have lost 30 lives on the old N4; I am confident that the 15km of new National Primary Road will make it a safer place for commutes to work and school, or for travel to visit friends and family in the decades ahead. While it is impossible to put a price on any one life saved on our roads, Government’s investment of €140 million on this vital piece of infrastructure will result in 27 fewer fatalities and 87 fewer serious injuries by 2051, based on current predictions.”

Welcoming the project Cllr. Paul Taylor, Cathaoirleach of Sligo County Council said “This is an important project for everybody in Co. Sligo. Removing cars and trucks from the old N4 and designating it a Local Road with a new cycleway makes local communities safer and enables people to choose walking or cycling for short local journeys. It also has the potential to be a game changer by helping to boost the local economy, bring jobs to the region and make Sligo a better and safer place to live, travel, and work in.”

Cormac O’Rourke, Chairman of Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) said “A project like today’s N4 Collooney to Castlebaldwin is prime example of the upgrades needed to the national roads network to deliver on TII’s remit to enhance safety and improve efficiency under the Government’s Project Ireland 2040 plan. TII continues to deliver, along with our Local Authority partners, the needed road safety improvements throughout the historic national roads network, along with maintaining the existing network. This national and local collaboration formally establishes the commitment to deliver on all the National Road elements contained within Project Ireland 2040.”

Chief Executive of Sligo County Council, Martin Lydon said “Sligo is a designated Regional Growth Centre in the Government’s Project Ireland 2040 plan. Enhancing and upgrading accessibility between urban centres and their regions, and ensuring compact growth is at the core of Project Ireland 2040. By improving journey time reliability between Dublin and Sligo, the new section of the N4 will position Sligo as being more attractive for economic development and will encourage future investment, job creation and tourism.”

The project was delivered by Sligo County Council’s TII National Roads Project Office, fully supported by Transport Infrastructure Ireland. The Employers Representative was Barry Transportation, and the contractor was Roadbridge, with Fehily Timoney, Byrne Looby, and Clandillon as Contractor’s Designers.

Road users travelling on the main Dublin to Sligo road now automatically enter the new dual carriageway at Castlebaldwin. The new road then continues for 13.8km, to Collooney, from where it joins the existing dual carriageway at the N4/N17 roundabout, 12km from Sligo. The project includes just under 1km of National Road single carriageway. There are 12 bridges in the new road scheme, including four over bridges, six under bridges, and two river bridges.

N4 Collooney to Castlebaldwin Project Facts

  • One of the first new National Roads Project under Project Ireland 2040’s Regional Connectivity objective
  • Replaces the old road where 30 people died over three decades
  • Predicted to result in 27 fewer fatalities and 87 fewer serious injuries by 2051
  • 15km of new National Primary Road comprising 1km single carriageway from the Curlews Bypass to a new roundabout at Castlebaldwin, followed by just under 14km of dual carriageway to Collooney
  • 3.4km of greenway (cycling route)
  • Potential to develop an 11km segregated cycling route alongside the old N4
  • Project value €140 million
  • Construction started in 2019 and took just 2.5 years to complete.

Sligo Facts

  • Identified as a Regional Growth Centre in Project Ireland 2040
  • Project Ireland 2040 was launched in Sligo – in 2018
  • 65,535 population (2016 census)
  • 37% of population under 30
  • 10,000+ students attend Sligo’s 3rd level college and university
  • 500,000+ tourists (2019)
  • Tourists stayed 4,630 nights (2019)
  • €150m expected in tourism by 2023
  • 1 Gigabit broadband in Sligo City
  • 232 micro businesses on the Local Enterprise Office (LEO) Client List
  • 67km to Enniskillen
  • 54km to Ireland West Airport
  • 207km from Dublin