Enniskillen bypass could be completed by 2024

THERE may not have been any big funding announcements yet, but with advanced works on the Enniskillen bypass progressing, the long-awaited project is currently on track to be completed within the next three years.
However there have been warnings the current situation at Stormont may complicate the release of that funding, putting the brakes on the project once again.
At the start of the year the first diggers moved in to prepare the way for the much needed project, which has been promised to the people of Fermanagh in some form or another for the past 30 years.
Funding of £2 million was released for these advance works however, with the cost of the full project forecast to be between £25-50 million, a lot more funding will need to be released for it to progress.
The project is expected to go out to tender this month, with a view to possibly beginning full construction in March next year. It is expected to take around 20 months to complete. That means, in an ideal world where everything stays on schedule, the Enniskillen bypass could actually be finished by November 2024.
Roads expert Wesley Johnston has been keeping a close eye on the project, providing regular updates on his ‘Northern Ireland Roads Site’ blog.
Last week Mr Johnston gave an update on the advanced works near the Sillees river on the western end of the project and near the River Erne at the eastern end. These works have included vegetation cutting, which had to be done before the end of hedge cutting season, and the fencing around the vested area.
“The next step will be to release the main construction tender,” he said. “However with the current problems at Stormont it may not be possible to release the tender without the planned budget in place.
“This raises the possibility that the Enniskillen Bypass could reach the point of having all its advance site works complete but then be unable to proceed to construction due to the Stormont situation. This is an issue for local political representatives to watch closely.”
Last May Infrastructure Minister Nichola Mallon announced her commitment to the bypass project and her Department’s intention to proceed with it.
Commenting before the beginning of the advanced works in January, Minister Mallon said she “acutely recognised” the need for the project, and welcomed the beginning of the works.
“The bypass will provide a new transport link to the southern side of the town, improving the connection between the A4 Dublin Road and the A4 Sligo Road,” she said.
“It will also help to significantly alleviate traffic congestion in Enniskillen town centre, reducing delays, improving average journey times by approximately 50% and improving road safety.

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