Government approval for the tender for the long-awaited Macroom bypass has not been granted, sparking fears of a hold-up on this and other pieces of infrastructure in the Kerry-Cork region.

Last August, the Government was reported to be committed to delivering on the near €300 million piece of infrastructure which will improve connectivity between Cork and Kerry and reduce travel times by around 15 minutes.

The Cabinet was expected to approve funding in September.

Tenders for the N22 Baile Macroom Road Development were returned on 28 June by Cork County Council and the tender assessment process is nearing completion.

However, "the award of the contract by Cork County Council is subject to Government approval, which is not yet in place," the council confirmed today.

The timeline for construction, following the appointment of a contractor, is approximately three years. 

The total scheme budget is estimated at €280 million.

Kerry TD Danny Healy-Rae said speculation has been mounting in Kerry that the bypass is being held up.

"I am extremely concerned and I have reason to be concerned. It seems to me there is no movement on this and other projects, like the Kilcummin sewerage scheme in this region.

"I raised the bypass in my budget speech and I got no reply," Mr Healy-Rae said.

The bypass has been sought for three decades.