Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Bridge to finally open on January 29
The longest bridge in Ireland linking county Kilkenny to county Wexford, just kilometres from Waterford, is to officially open later this month.
The announcement comes as huge relief to commuters who have had to deal with close to three years of traffic delays close to the site. The original scheduled opening date was April 2019.
The Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Bridge will be officially opened by An Taoiseach Leo Veradkar on Wednesday, January 29.
A spokesperson for Kilkenny County Council said: “The 15km scheme represents an investment in the order of €230 million in the South East region and will generate significant benefits to the region, particularly in terms of shorter and safer journeys for road users and improved accessibility to New Ross and the wider region.
“The project incorporates the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Bridge over the River Barrow, which at 887m, is Ireland’s longest bridge and the longest bridge of its kind globally. The extremely ambitious design of the bridge sets it apart, and it is set to become one of the most iconic structures in the country.
“The opening of the scheme will ease chronic traffic congestion and tailbacks in New Ross, particularly during peak times, with travel time savings of up to 30 minutes providing significant efficiencies on the strategic N25 route from Cork to Rosslare Europort, while also supporting the future growth and sustainability of the South East region.”
The new stretch of the N25 and the Rose Fitzgearld Kennedy bridge will open to the public on Thursday, January 30 at noon.
The construction of the bridge has been beset with problems and delays and will open nearly a year past its original completion date. One construction worker died following an accident at the site last autumn, while late last summer repairs had to be made to one of the 11 bridge supports after crumbling and defective concrete was found.
The bridge will connect Pink Point, Glenmore in Kilkenny to Stokestown in Wexford, and it the longest “extrados” type bridge in the world.