Egis wins contract to modernise Cork rail

L-R: Padraig O'Sullivan TD; Piers Wood, country managing sirector, Alstom; AJ Cronin, delivery manager, Cork Area Commuter Rail Programme; Michael McGrath, minister for finance; Jim Meade, chief executive, Irish Rail, Andrew Doyle, operations director, Egis Ireland and David Stanton, TD

Egis has been awarded a four-year project to support Iarnród Éireann (Irish Rail) in modernising the existing signalling, electrical and telecommunications (SET) systems in Cork. 

The global consulting, construction engineering and operating firm will work on the initiative which is set to vastly improve the railway network in the region.

At the launch, held at Kent Railway Station in Cork, finance minister Michael McGrath TD endorsed the overall Cork Area Commuter Rail Programme.

He said: “This is a significant milestone for the commuter rail network in Cork. 

“The investment is one of many planned projects planned to boost Cork’s rail offering and public transport network. 

“Upgrading Cork's signalling system is a crucial step forward to facilitate the proposed capacity and service frequency increases planned for the region and will be of considerable benefit to users of the rail network”.

As an integral part of the Cork Metropolitan Area Transport Strategy (CMATS) 2040, this project focuses on the heavy rail network of the Cork Area Commuter Rail Programme. 

The signalling and communications improvements will help the planned increases in rail capacity and service frequency, bolster the signalling system’s reliability, and support Iarnród Éireann’s continued safe operation of the railway. 

AJ Cronin, delivery manager, Cork Area Commuter Rail Programme at Iarnród Éireann, said: “This is a hugely significant step forward for Cork’s public transport infrastructure.

“In partnering with Egis, we are confident in their capacity to deliver this transformative project, boosting our rail services while aligning with our strategic mission for sustainable growth. 

“We look forward to the positive changes this collaboration will bring to our community, making rail the preferred mode of transport.”

This upgrade project, involving the three main railway corridors in Cork, forms part of a larger development plan including multi-modal integrated transport hubs, additional rolling stock, and new stations with park and ride interchange points. 

Notably, the upgrade will cater to the significant expected growth in commuter numbers and lay a strong foundation for Cork’s future transportation needs.

The Egis team, which includes experts from both Ireland and the UK, will also integrate key staff from JB Barry & Partners, following the recent acquisition of the Cork-based engineering firm by Egis. 

Andrew Doyle, operations director at Egis Ireland, said: “This project signifies a landmark moment not just for Egis and Iarnród Éireann, but for the entire Cork community. 

“The upgrades will bring a seamless, improved railway experience to the region, with enhanced service reliability, frequency, and capacity. We are delighted Iarnród Éireann has placed its trust in us for this important project.”

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