Ireland is at risk of becoming a one airport nation.

Ireland is at risk of becoming a one airport nation.

Ireland is at risk of becoming a one airport nation.

Cork and Shannon Airports cannot be forgotten about while Dublin airport thrives.

I am questioning the details announced yesterday by Transport Minister, Shane Ross in relation to the possibility of Dublin Airport getting a third terminal. Mr Ross said a future report on air travel in Ireland will address the possibility of a third terminal at Dublin Airport. Will this come at the expense of Cork and Shannon Airports. Ireland cannot become a one airport nation.

With so much being invested in Dublin Airport and Minister Ross focused on the future of Dublin Airport, I wonder is there an equal focus on Cork and Shannon airports in terms of investment. Cork and Shannon Airports are vital in the development of Southern and Western Ireland and we need to make sure the Government is focused on their futures just as much as it is on Dublin Airport. We must be focused on regional development and Cork and Shannon Airports play a huge role in this.

We cannot allow Cork and Shannon Airports to be forgotten about. I am looking forward to seeing the detail in the report which will be released soon by the Department of Transport which is looking at the State’s airports up to 2050. I hope that there is as much of a focus on other airports around the country in that report as there is on Dublin Airport.

Mr Ross made the comments on Dublin airport when he was launching the transport strand of Project 2040 yesterday. Dublin Airport Authority (DAA) chief executive Dalton Philips said 85% of visitors to Ireland arrive through Dublin airport. He also said Dublin Airport is “full” and cannot add any more flights.

It is great to see Dublin Airport doing so well but there is more to Ireland than Dublin Airport and we have excellent airports at Cork and Shannon that need the attention of the Government in order for them to thrive.

Key actions mentioned in Project Ireland 2040 include a new runway for Dublin Airport, continued development of Cork and Shannon Airports, investment in Ireland West Airport Knock, and for smaller airports under the Regional Airports Programme. However there is no mention of a third terminal at Dublin Airport.


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