Underground rail system for Dublin ruled out.

A new report examining alternatives to the Light Rail System has ruled out an underground rail system for Dublin city. The report, conducted by French consultants at the request of the Minister for Transport, Energy and Communication, Michael Lowry TD, finds in favour of the proposed Luas light rail tram system over the digging of tunnels throughout the city.

Director of the Luas project, Donal Mangan, outlines the criteria for the selection of the consultants and is confident in the credibility of their findings.

The consultants presented a picture of Lyon France to show what building an underground rail system would involve. However, their findings are not accepted by everyone and the report has its critics. Declan Martin of the Dublin Chamber of Commerce says that the report has not considered all options for tunneling. He also believes that it presents a "worst-case scenario" which would involve digging up Grafton Street.

It has not considered alternate routes.

The report found that even if a short stretch of Luas line were to be put underground, Grafton Street could be closed for 18 months.

Authors of the report say that Luas will help reclaim the city streets from the car

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 8 August 1996. The reporter is Cathy Milner.