Following a long spell of harsh economic conditions, Ireland is growing again. Active in the country for around a decade, Egis has continued to lay the foundations for its achievements, primarily resulting from its expertise in the roads sector.
With a total of 4.8 million inhabitants unevenly distributed across its 85,000 sq. km of territory, Ireland is one of the least densely-populated countries in Europe. This sparsity and the relatively low level of urbanisation [half of Ireland’s population still lives in a rural environment] explains the importance of the road network to the country.
Since the turn of the century, Egis has taken to modernising Irish roads through wide-scale activity in the areas of road operation and
maintenance. The group is involved in a dozen projects in Ireland, the most iconic among them the operation of the Dublin Tunnel, a contract which was recently extended to include the operation of Cork’s Jack Lynch Tunnel. The management of these tunnels comes in addition to the 450 km of motorway already under Egis management in Ireland.
Egis hits the road in Ireland
In spite of the economic recession, Egis has gradually forged itself a solid reputation in Ireland, earning the trust of large public sector authorities. The group has displayed its merits in the field of engineering, carrying out preliminary design studies for an eastern bypass motorway around Dublin, as well as several design, engineering and works supervision assignments for the construction of a dual carriageway between Nenagh and Limerick.
At the same time, Egis has reinforced its operating activities by acquiring majority shares in three Irish operating companies: Northlink (M1 motorway to Dundalk – 56 km), Midlink (M7/M8 motorways to Portlaoise – 43 km) and Southlink (the N25 Waterford bypass – 23 km). Egis additionally bought 100 per cent of the First Route Management Company, which provides assistance services to the three abovementioned companies and to the Eastlink operator based in Dublin. “The Irish motorway network is one of the most recent in Europe and is still expanding,” states Steve Preece, managing director at Egis Projects Ireland. “Egis very quickly became an essential figure in motorway operations in Ireland, offering services in the management of both motorways and national roads, whose development and maintenance are a strategically important issue for the country.
“Since 2006, under our brand Easytrip, we have developed electronic tolling, automatic car park access and vehicle fleet management solutions, to make life easier for road users,” explains Steve Preece. “With more than 195,000 customers today, we enjoy a unique position in the market to the point of becoming the leading supplier of services for the payment of electronic tolls and parking charges using a single customer account.”
Capitalising on these achievements, Egis has since extended its offering to other types of projects, such as the maintenance of intelligent transport system (ITS) equipment, the Irish national safety camera service and the supervision of resurfacing works in the south of Ireland.
A well-established recovery
Today, the Irish economy is recovering at a brisk pace, aided by a gradual upturn in foreign and domestic investment. In the transport sector, €850 million is to be invested in the upgrading of the motorway and national road network.
“Considering this encouraging economic trend, Egis is starting to take another look at opportunities for getting involved in the engineering sector in Ireland and also in the UK, in particular in roads and railways,” explains Matthieu Loussier, director for Europe and Central Asia at Egis. Public bodies such as Transport Infrastructure Ireland have put forward plans for approval on a €10 billion spend over the next 20 years, covering all aspects of travel from roads to light rail with a projected increase in movement of 25 per cent. “In the area of transport, Ireland’s new priority is to reduce road congestion via mobility, without infrastructure expansion. Egis naturally possesses all of the necessary expertise to contribute to these plans,” adds Matthieu Loussier.
At the same time, ports are continuing to grow and the port of Dublin has announced expansion plans which are likely to require the improvement and rationalisation of its entire road network. Similarly, the air travel sector is looking promising, linking in with the emergence of new technologies such as remote towers for air traffic control, or the continuous improvement of management and safety systems. “Egis has had its own aviation consultancy business since 2013 (Helios) which for example assisted the Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) in drawing up a business case for the modernisation of air traffic management systems, and helped Dublin airport in its work to come into compliance with the new regulatory standards of the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). In the longer term, Egis and the IAA are considering working increasingly closely on a range of projects outside Ireland, just as they are currently doing for the review of air traffic management system safety in Thailand.”
Egis Projects Ireland
24 Northwood House
Northwood Business Park, Dublin 9
Tel: +353 1 469 1200