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Dunshaughlin services

(Seirbhísí Dún Seachlainn)

Dunshaughlin
Dún Seachlainn
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Road:M3 between exits 5 and 6
Signposted from the road?It will be
Opening:2025
Grid reference:N 98125 48941
Services type:Two sites located between junctions, with no public connection between them

⚠️ Please note that this service area is not yet open.


In 2015, the new Transport Infrastructure Ireland began plans for a new network of motorway services. Dunshaughlin (name not confirmed) was being investigated. Their plan to have it open by 2019 has fallen by the wayside, and it has been suggested that no progress has been made since 2017.

To further complicate matters, Applegreen received planning permission for an "off motorway service area" in May 2023. It will be built to the north-east of M3 J6 at Knock, accessed from the link road, and will compete directly with any state-owned Dunshaughlin services, if one is ever built.

Applegreen have a habit of building motorway service areas to beat the state: they did this at Lusk, and at Wicklow. Documents show that they intend to provide a Burger King, one more food unit, a shop, a play area and 36 electric vehicle charging points. They have called it a 'multi million euro development' that will create around 25 jobs, and will be based on their site at Enfield.

The Applegreen site had previously had its planning permission quashed in 2016 due to land zoning issues: they sought permission again in August 2022. Circle K objected to this on the basis that it would "seriously impact on the vitality and vibrancy of Dunshaughlin".

Circle K's predecessor, Topaz, had previously had permission refused for their own service area further down the M3 at J5, Dunboyne. An Bord Pleanála ruled that the junction could be unsuitable, and that TII's Dunshaughlin site was better and already at the "preliminary" stage - though TII have since confirmed that they had suspended all work on Dunshaughlin services in 2020, and the situation won't be reviewed until 2027.

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