THE Mayor of Limerick says the city council should “meet head on” proposals to increase the cost of tolls for using the Limerick Tunnel.
Cllr Jim Long was speaking after the National Roads Authority confirmed it has santioned 10 cent increases in tolls for trucks and lorries.
From January, two and three-axle vehicles will have to pay €4.60 to use the tunnel and and heavy trucks will have to pay €5.80 per trip.
There will be no increase for other classes of vehicles.
Announcing the new rates, the NRA said they were based on a Consumer Price Index formula which regulates tolls to ensure they remain in line with inflation per category of vehicle.
However, Cllr Long says the decision makes no sense especially as traffic volumes passing through the tunnel are below expectations.
“It is well flagged that the kernal of this problem is that they are not generating the revenue from the tunnel that they expected to; So it was inevitahble that they were gong to look for an increase and if the increase is imposed it will have an negative impact on the city,” he said.
Despite the proposed inreases Don O’Sullivan of Direct Route, which operates the Limerick Tunnel, said it remains value for money.
“There is very significant time savings and savings on fuel and wear and tear to vehicles - particularly to heavy goods vehicles using the road network and I think the users see the benefit of the facility,” he said.