Monday, November 21, 2022

The N25 Waterford Toll is to increase across all vehicle bands from New Year’s Day.

Photo: Google Maps

THE toll for cars using the N25 Waterford Bypass, which connects the county to the M9 motorway, is to increase from €2 to €2.10 on January 1, 2023.

This, according to Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) is “due to the inflationary impact during 2022)” and represents the second 10 cent increase on the toll in successive years.

The increase means motorcyclists will now pay €1.10 instead of €1, while the toll for buses and Large Goods Vehicles (LGVs) will rise by 30 cent, from €3.50 to €3.80.

Two/three axle vehicles will soon be charged €5.40, an increase of 50 cent with four axle vehicle drivers also facing the same increase, going from €6.30 to  €6.80.

The news came after a motion tabled by Cllr Mary Roche (now SD), called for the City & County Council “to prepare a case for presentation to the Minister for Transport seeking the buyout or relocation of the toll on the Waterford City Bypass”. The motion, tabled at the Council’s November Plenary meeting in Dungarvan, won unanimous support from her colleagues.

Cllr Roche said it would come as a surprise to no-one to declare that Waterford City “has become clogged up by traffic that, from what we can understand, doesn’t necessarily need to be going directly through the city. But because the bypass is tolled (such traffic) is choosing to come through the city and clog up the streets rather than take the toll.”

Cllr Roche added: “I have been meeting, through the Economic Development SPC (Strategic Policy Committee) with members of the retail community over recent weeks and months…and a lot of the talk is that customers are telling the retailers that they’re just turning around and going back because they are taking so long to get into Waterford…

“And while I don’t have any proof of it, I would argue that if you knocked on the windows of every car going down the Quay and asked them where they were going, I would say 70 to 80 per cent of them are not stopping in the city – they’re literally using it as a means to get through the city.”

In reply, City & County Council Director of Services (Roads) Fergus Galvin said the potential relocating of the toll booth would be “a matter for the State, for the Government”. He added: “As the motion has been passed, it’s up to us to look and see how we achieve that in terms of putting a case together…but we will report back to you on it.”

Cllr Roche, who thanked the members for their support, admitted that the prospect of the Council buying out the toll represented “a faint hope”.

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