frequently asked questions
The N11/N25 Oilgate to Rosslare Harbour Scheme is the improvement of the N11 and N25 national primary routes, starting from the southern end of the M11 Gorey to Enniscorthy Motorway Scheme and finishing at Rosslare Harbour. This scheme will improve the safety and reduce journey times along the route.The development of this scheme is subject to the relevant approvals and funding being granted.
Rosslare Europort is the State’s second largest passenger port, and the fourth largest port in terms of overall tonnage. Significant growth is forecast in the coming years which will further increase the Port’s strategic importance for trade, business and tourism. The capacity and resilience of the access to the Port is critical to sustaining this strategic connection with the UK and continent. Improving access to Rosslare Europort is compatible with national, regional and local policies and plans
The project aims to meet the objectives of the National Development Plan 2018 –2027, the National Planning Framework –Project Ireland 2040 and the Wexford Development Plan. The need for the project will be tested by the level of service provided to road users by the network now and into the future with a focus on road safety, road capacity, journey times, operational performance and network deficiencies.
The constraints study and option selection process is being revisited due to the nine year time lapse since the previous processes were completed in 2011. The studies completed at that time will be utilised for the current studies and will be complemented with up to date studies to identify any changes to the natural and built environment in the intervening years. Any changes to relevant legislation, policies, standards and guidelines will also be assessed. This will ensure that critical decisions on the project are made on the basis of up to date information and assessments.
The Study Area is the defined area under consideration within which potential options for the development of the scheme will be identified, developed, and assessed. Defining the Study Area is one of the earliest and most significant aspects of the option selection process. The Study Area should be large enough to encompass all scheme options that may be potentially feasible but not so large as to unnecessarily include large areas that realistically will not be directly impacted by the project.
The development of the study area is cyclical in nature as the findings of the constraints study and public consultations may instigate a re-evaluation of its extent. Also, as options are developed if it is found that there are potentially viable options outside the study area it can be reviewed and amended if necessary.
Once a study area has been defined all constraints within the area are identified to inform the identification of feasible scheme options and to facilitate the systematic assessment of the potential impacts associated with the options.
A constraint is something that could impose a limit or restriction on the development of the project or impede its progress. Constraints may be divided into three principal categories, namely:
- Natural Constraints -naturally occurring landscapes and features, including underground features e.g. mountains, rivers, aquifers, conservation areas;
- Artificial Constraints -forming part of the built environment including underground features e.g. housing, schools, community facilities, groundwater wells, landfills, services and utilities, roads, rail, walking and cycle trails, archaeology and cultural heritage;
- External Constraints –planning and environmental legislation and guidelines, design standards, policy, procedural, financial, and legal issues.
The Constraints Study identifies the nature and extent of constraints within the Study Area, at an appropriate level of detail. These constraints are then documented and mapped so that potential scheme options can be developed to take account of such constraints. The public consultation process is an important part of the constraints study as it allows the study team to garner local knowledge and information on constraints.
Scheme options have been developed taking account of the constraints that have been identified within the Study Area. The initial development of scheme options is guided by a number of factors including the following:
- Options that are responsive to identified problems and objectives;
- Options that are noticeably different and offer different choices;
- Options that are developed with environmental, safety and social considerations in mind from the start;
- The adoption of an incremental approach to the development of options. Such an incremental approach in this case involves options that encompass the continued use of the existing road corridor, investment to improve the existing road corridor and the development of a new road corridor.
Feedback obtained from the public consultation and ongoing surveys and environmental/engineeringassessments will be considered by the Project Team and, if appropriate, option corridors may be adjusted. Optioncorridors are initially typically shown 300m in width to allow for adjustments to route options as described above. The adjustments to the route alignment options will generally occur within the option corridorbut in some instances the option corridormay need to be increased.
The scheme options are to some extent interchangeable. Combinations of different sections of option corridorsmay also be examined if it is thought such combinations of sections could result in a better overall scheme.
The project team is now engaging with the public on the finding of the constraints study and the scheme options that have been identified. All feedback received will be considered by the project team and a Post-Consultation Report will be published on the project website. This report will summarise the consultation process and the matters raised during the consultation.
The scheme options are then assessed taking into account the comments and submissions received, After the initial scheme options are assessed under the headings ‘Engineering’, ‘Environment’ and ‘Economy’, some options may be eliminated and the remaining options are further assessed under the following criteria;‘Economy’, ‘Safety’, ‘Environment’, ‘Accessibility and Social Inclusion’, ‘Integration’ and ‘Physical Activity’. If the initial assessment results in the creation of options which are significantly different to those presented at the initial public consultation,a second public consultation may be held.
An Option Selection Reportis then prepared which presents the assessment and findings of the option selection process and identifies the preferred scheme option. The Option Selection Report and the preferred scheme option will be also presented to the public for information.
Once the selected scheme option is confirmed, a design will be developed within the scheme corridor. The design will be subjected to an environmental evaluation to identify potential environmental impacts and mitigation measures. The project will also engage with those who own, lease or rent properties and/or lands directly impacted by, or in the vicinity of the scheme. The design and environmental evaluation will be sufficiently developed to facilitate submission of the scheme for planning approval to An Bord Pleanála.
The option corridors for this project are initially 300m in width. The option corridor does not represent the actual final width of the road scheme or the extent of lands that are needed. The corridors give an idea of the area within which the final road alignment will be designed. For example, the final road,whether it is anew motorway or dual carriageway, may be approximately 40m to 80m wide. In some instances, the option corridor may be increased at particular locations, typically to accommodate engineering needs, environmental assessments or to address feedback provided by the public consultations.
Cost estimates have not yet been prepared for the scheme options. Feedback from the public is required before proceeding with the assessment and evaluation of the options. Cost estimates will then be prepared for each of the options and will be evaluated under the ‘Economy’ criterion as described above.
The upgrade of the N11 and N25 has been identified within a list of key projects in the recently published National Planning Framework and National Development Plan. However,the advancement of the scheme is subject to ongoing funding and statutory approval.
Given the extent of the scheme it is likely that some residential property will be affected, and it is possible that a very small number may need to be purchased to facilitate the scheme. Each property is considered a constraint and in so far as possible, the scheme will seek to avoid and/ or minimise impacts on residential properties. If property acquisition is needed to facilitate the project, Wexford County Council and the project team will engage directly and comprehensively with affected property owners.
It is likely that any lands required for the scheme will be acquired by a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO). If any part of a person’s private land / property holding is included in the CPO, the land / property owner is entitled to appropriate compensation. This may also be the case for a person who may have an interest in any land/ property identified in the CPO. Compensation will be provided in accordance with CPO legislation. A guide to the CPO process and the legislation is provided by the Citizens Information Website.
A planning corridor is currently in place for the scheme following the previous option selection process in 2011.This planning corridor will remain in place unless or until a different corridor is confirmed from the current option selection process. Wexford County Council is conscious that residents within the current planning corridor in particular would like greater certainty with regard to the final confirmation of the selected option corridor and any changes that may have to the planning corridor. The project is working to progress and complete the option selection process in order to provide such clarity.
As some planning applications may affect the scheme,all relevant planning applications will be reviewed and each application will be considered on a case by case basis and a considered opinion will be formed in relation to the potential impact on the scheme.
The status of bypassed sections of national road has not yet been decided. Generally bypassed sections of national roads are reclassified to regional or local roads following the completion of new sections of the national route.
Public participation is an important and integral part of the development of the project and is specifically catered for at various stages during its development. Meaningful engagement is important to ensure that those with an interest in, or potentially impacted by the scheme are kept fully informed and that their vital feedback taken into account. A number of public consultation events and other stakeholder engagements will proceed during the development of the project. This process will provide an opportunity for the public to highlight any views or special interests to be taken into account in developing the scheme. Public views and feedback will play an important role as the scheme develops. The Project Team will consider inputs from members of the public, such as submissions received through the public consultation process, or identification of local issues.
In accordance with current Covid-19 guidance, and in order to protect the public and project staff from the risk of the transmission, it is not possible to hold a public event at this time. Instead we are holding an online public consultation event on this project website and via leaflets distributed to properties within the study area. For more detail on this process, please visit the Public Consultation section of this website.
To allow the project team to manage the inflow of queries and review and consider them fully, we are asking that such queries be submitted before 4pm on the 10th July. The project team will then endeavour to respond to the query as soon as possible, and within 24 hours if possible. General queries can continue to be made after this time via email, post and phone at the contact details provided on the website.
In order to consider all feedback received and prepare a post-consultation report, we would ask that all feedback forms (online or postal) be submitted before 5pm on Monday the 3rd of August.
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