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"Crunch time" for Waterford airport extension, David Cullinane says

"Crunch time" for Waterford airport extension, David Cullinane says "Crunch time" for Waterford airport extension, David Cullinane says
Mary O'Neill

Sinn Fein TD for Waterford David Cullinane says time is running out in terms of acquiring funding to extend the runway at Waterford Airport.

Deputy Cullinane was speaking to Damien Tiernan on Déise Today following news this week that over €16 million is to be invested in boosting the safety and security of a number of airports, including Donegal, Kerry, Shannon and Cork.

According to the government, one of the primary requirements for this latest round funding was that the airports had operational commercial flights, which is why Waterford hasn't qualified.

David Cullinane told Damien that the real problem is that we can't get commercial flights back until the runway is extended at Waterford Airport, and that it's "crunch time" in this regard.

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He referred to the fact that the original costings of the extension had been €12 million; €2 million of which was to come from local authorities, €5 million from Central Government, and €5 million from private investors.

However, the issue now, Deputy Cullinane says, is that with the significant increase in building and supply costs since those figures were arrived at, the current cost of the runway extension is coming in at around €15 / €16 million.

"We can't have a situation where this goes on for another couple of years... it's really a challenge for Waterford to get the runway built. The CEO (of Waterford Council) wants this built as quickly as possible and we can only hope these discussions with the private sector are fruitful. Money has to be put on the table," he said.

Have a listen to the full discussion on Déise Today, where Damien was also joined by Independent TD for Waterford Matt Shanahan.

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