A new design for Dublin's Metrolink will shelve plans to close part of Dublin's Luas Green line the National Transport Authority has confirmed.

The new line will now extend south only as far as Charlemont.

The NTA has also confirmed it will be using a single bore tunnel that will reduce cost and disruption.

In a statement, the NTA says it has decided that the planned upgrade of services on the Green Line from Sandyford will be necessary because of increasing passenger numbers but not for up to 20 years.

The NTA has also decided not to use Na Fianna GAA pitches in Glasnevin for construction and to build a smaller underground station on the neighbouring grounds of Home Farm soccer club.

Other changes include a decision to move the underground stop on O'Connell St from the beneath the road to under the nearby site of the old Carlton cinema, which is due to be developed as a shopping centre.

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This is being done to reduce the impact on bus, Luas and vehicular traffic on the street.

For the Tara Street stop, residents and apartments owners in the College Gate apartment block will be offered a compensation package while the NTA says it will work with Dublin City Council to find another site for Markievicz Swimming Pool and Leisure Centre.

Part of St Stephen's Green will be "impacted" on the east side because of a decision to move the station south and west to streets open and to avoid a major sewer.

In Ballymun, the station will be moved to under the old shopping centre as it is believed to a better location and will less disruption.

The changes follow a period of public consultation during which Taoiseach Leo Varadkar publicly called for a change to plans to use Na Fianna pitches, which are in the constituency of Minister for Finance Pascal Donohoe.

Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy and local TDs objected to the effect on Ranelagh, which would have included the closure of Dunville Avenue and which local people complained would be like a "Berlin Wall".

Minister for Transport Shane Ross said he held "crisis talks" with the NTA after it was claimed that the upgrade of the Luas Green line to Metro would mean it would be closed for up to four years.

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