The section of M9 between Carlow and Kilcullen was (unofficially) due to open on Thursday 17th December. A more official date was published by AA and the Irish Times of Monday 21st December at 2pm with Motorway open to traffic by 3pm. However this opening of the new Motorway section has apparently been delayed until 8th Jan 2010. Today, the Irish Times reported that the “€300 million motorway from Kilcullen, Co Kildare, to Carlow is to open next Monday, some nine months ahead of schedule. The 27km stretch of motorway will provide a bypass of Castledermot and a new national secondary road to Athy town via the junction at Mullamast in Co Kildare.” There are many sources on the web which now state that “the opening of the Kilcullen-Carlow link has been deferred until January by request of the Transport Minister.” This makes total sense because the the Ministers are on Christmas holidays from this Friday … and they don’t come back to work until way after Christmas because they got an extra weeks holidays. So it seems that the comfort and “Holiday Time” of a minister is better than a few people being killed or injured on a stretch of road which is 80Km to 100Km but where cars overtake you at 120Km with no Garda speedchecks. Last year on this stretch of road there were a multitude of crashes one of which claimed the lives of 2 people in one crash. It will be interesting to see if the NRA will step in or if Minister Noel Dempsey will back down and cut the ribbon on the date specified. The fact that a finished and totally usable 27km stretch of Motorway lies unused just because a Minister will not go and cut a ribbon just to get his photo in the paper is disgraceful. …And they say our government is overpaid and out of touch? There’s more proof!