Minister launches public consultation process on the development of a new Greenways Strategy and announces funding for greenway projects in three counties
The Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Shane Ross T.D, today launched a public consultation process on the future development of Greenways. The Minister published a public consultation paper on a “Strategy for the Future Development of Greenways” and is inviting submissions from interested parties on the issues raised in the paper by 14 July.
“I’m delighted to publish this public consultation paper which aims to seek the views of all those interested in the development of greenways in Ireland” said Minister Ross. “The paper discusses a wide range of issues surrounding the development of greenways and poses a number of questions to prompt further debate and inform the development of an overarching Strategy for the future development of Greenways. The public consultation paper sets out the policy context for Government investment in Greenways, including their value from an economic, health, community and rural and regional regeneration perspective. It also references the significant tourism benefits that can accrue as well as providing a more sustainable transport option for many communities. Importantly, the paper seeks views from interested parties on some of the more contentious issues that have arisen in the development of some greenway projects and asks what approach should be taken to such issues in future.”
He went on to say “Some of the Greenways that have been developed to date have been outstanding success stories for their localities. One of the most well-known, of course, is the Great Western Greenway in Mayo and, more recently, we have seen the level of interest that the Waterford Greenway has garnered since it’s opening in March this year. We have an opportunity, through our commitment in the Programme for Partnership Government, to build more Greenways throughout Ireland and to provide more localities with the opportunity to benefit from such investment in the same way that communities in Mayo and Waterford have.
The Minister continued “Since becoming Minister I have been inundated with requests from all around the country for funding for Greenways. It is important that we target our investment in greenways that will deliver the most for their communities and for the country at large. The outcome of this public consultation will inform the development of a new Greenways Strategy to ensure that future funding is spent on the right projects, in the right areas and at the right time. To make sure that we take the right approach in future we need as many people as possible to give us their views during this public consultation process. I am particularly pleased to be launching this consultation paper on the same day that I launch National Bike Week which starts on Saturday June 10th and continues to Sunday June 18th this year. There are events happening all around the country that will provide an opportunity to remind people of the fun and freedom that cycling provides.”
The Minister also announced funding for a number of greenway projects underway saying – “I am also pleased to announce further funding for the Galway to Dublin Greenway to progress elements of the Greenway in Counties Kildare and Meath; this will build on the work started last year in those counties and will see people able to cycle all the way from Maynooth to Athlone by early 2018. I am also pleased to announce funding for the completion of works on the Waterford Greenway, this Greenway with its stunning views, tunnels and Aqueducts has really captured the public’s imagination since it opened recently. Waterford City and County Council has done a fantastic job in partnership with community interests to deliver this project and I congratulate them on their achievement. I am pleased to be able to provide funding to help complete works on this outstanding Greenway.”
Additional Information for Editors:
Public consultation Process on Greenways Strategy:
The public consultation paper is available on the Department’s website
As set out in the public consultation paper, submissions can be made electronically to email@example.com or by post to:
Sustainable Transport Division
Department of Transport, Tourism & Sport
The closing date for submissions is Friday 14th July.
Details of Funding announced for Greenway projects:
Local Authority Details of Project Funding awarded
Kildare/Meath Maynooth to Westmeath Border (Galway to Dublin Greenway) Continuation of works commenced in 2016 €4.5m in 2017
Waterford Waterford Greenway (completion of works including additional surfacing, Bilberry Road extension and accommodation works) €1.6m