By 2018, it will be possible to cycle from Dublin to Athlone almost entirely off-road

Minister Ross was at the opening of the Garrycastle to Whitegates National Cycle Network in Athlone on Friday 7th April.

Major Funding for the Dublin Galway Greenway

Supporters of the Dublin Galway Greenway project received excellent news when funding was announced to complete major sections of the route

2016 start for work on the Meath Kildare section of Greenway

According to Dail records the Minister expects that work will commence on the Meath and Kildare sections of the greenway in 2016.

Plans to Complete the Royal Canal Greenway in Longford

Longford County Council have issued proposals to complete the royal canal greenway connecting to the Dublin Galway Greenway.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

"No funds available to re-open railway lines for passengers or freight" says Paschal Donohoe


Minister states greenway on closed western rail route would "fully protect integrity of corridor"
 
Greenway supporters now look for county councils to listen to Minister and back greenway for the "tourism and business benefits" it will bring
 
The Western Rail Trail Campaign received an email from Minister of Transport Paschal Donohoe on June 22nd which reinforces previous correspondence from the Minister that his preferred option is for a greenway on the route of the closed railway from Athenry to Sligo in order to protect the ownership of the closed railway route until such time as a railway ever becomes possible.
 
Brendan Quinn of the Western Rail Trail campaign said "we are in touch with the Minister on a regular basis and this email reconfirms what Minister Donohoe has said on a number of occasions that the Government has no plans to re-open the railway and that a greenway will protect the route, furthermore  this is the first time Mr. Donohoe has referred to both passenger and freight options for the railway"
 
The Minister makes three key points in his email (copy attached to this press release) quoted below:
"There is no Exchequer funding available to re open rail lines, either for passengers or freight, anywhere on the network". "Iarnr√≥d √Čireann has confirmed that when Greenways are being developed along closed and abandoned railways, there is specific provision in the licence agreement to ensure that the corridor could be brought back to use as a working railway, should it be required at a future date.". "In addition to the tourism and business benefits that Greenways bring, the development of a Greenway along a rail corridor would of course also fully protect the integrity of the corridor in the event of its future reopening as an operational railway."

"The Minister has confirmed what Greenway campaign groups in Sligo, Mayo and Galway have been saying for many years" said Quinn. The Minister added in his email that it is a matter for local authorities in the first instance to initiate proposals for a greenway on the route.  Quinn said "Sligo county council are on board and have approved the idea of a greenway on the route, and is currently looking for funding for a feasibility study.
 
Unfortunately it's a different story in Mayo and Galway where both county councils are refusing to accept the potential for tourism which a greenway from Sligo to Athenry could bring to the west.  We cannot understand why Mayo and Galway county councils are so opposed to this jobs initiative" says Quinn.
 
We have tried to explain to the councils what a greenway on the route of the closed railway line from Sligo to Athenry will do for the west. Firstly, The potential to link in with the proposed Sligo, Leitrim, Cavan and Fermanagh greenway from Sligo to Enniskillen opening up a direct cycle route to the West of Ireland for tourists from the North. Secondly,  to connect with the Great Western Greenway at Turlough House near Swinford connecting Enniskillen with Achill by continuous greenway. The third benefit would be to connect with the Dublin Galway greenway near Athenry to create a continuous greenway from Dublin to Mayo and Sligo.
 
Quinn added "The latest email from the Minister puts the ball firmly in the county councils' court. They can either embrace this jobs opportunity or they can continue to be in denial about a railway that clearly is not going to happen anytime soon, if ever.  The greenway option now appears to be the only show in town."
 

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Greenway Updates June 2015

In the last few weeks, a number of news stories related to the Dublin Galway Greenway came into prominence.


Earlier in the month, we heard from Councillor Tom Farrell on the Shannonside FM news welcoming the significant progress being made on the Athlone to Mullingar section of the Dublin Galway Greenway. Councillor Farrell expressed his views that the opening of new Athlone to Mullingar cycleway will “re-unite Co Westmeath”.


In the last week, however, there has been mixed news on the hope of having a speedy resolution to the controversial route options on the Connaught part of the route. The Connaught Tribune reports that TD gives pledge that cycleway won’t go ahead without the support of locals. In a effort to keep everyone onside we suspect that the route on the Galway side of the greenway may start to slow now as negotiations and concessions commence.


But in an interesting development, the Connaught tribune has a story that reports that the Athenry and Sligo greenway group suggests Apple i-Way between Athenry and Sligo. As reported before by this website, joining the Longford greenway with a link to a future  Athenry and Sligo greenway could be a more realistic answer to getting a coast to coast Dublin Galway greenway.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Dublin City Council opens Public Consultation on Royal Canal Greenway



Dublin City Council has opened its plans for Royal Canal cycleway for public consultation. The 10 million Euro project, which is part of the Dublin Galway greenway, aims to provide a cycle and pedestrian route from Ashtown to Dublin City along the route of the Royal Canal.

The project is being planned in 4 phases with the 1st phase (Guild Street to Sheriff Street Upper) already constructed. The other 3 phases consist of

  • PHASE 2: SHERIFF STREET UPPER , DUBLIN 1 TO NORTH STRAND ROAD, DUBLIN 1
  • PHASE 3: NORTH STRAND ROAD, DUBLIN 1 TO PHIBSBOROUGH ROAD, DUBLIN 7.
  • PHASE 4: PHIBSBOROUGH ROAD, DUBLIN 7 TO ASHTOWN, DUBLIN 15  

In addition, for all 3 Phases of the Scheme the proposed works includes the provision of new public lighting, CCTV, gateways to prevent inappropriate motor vehicle access and other ancillary services along the entire route. An Ecological Report and Built Heritage & Conservation Report has also been provided. Plans for the proposed development may be inspected for a period of 6 weeks from Thursday 28th May at the offices of Dublin City Council, Public Counter, Planning Department, Block 4, Ground Floor, Civic offices, Wood Quay, Dublin 8 and at the following locations:

  • Charleville Mall Library, Charleville Mall, North Strand, Dublin 1.
  • Phibsborough Library, Royal Canal Bank, Phibsborough, Dublin 7
  • Cabra Area Office, 97 New Cabra Road, Cabra, Dublin 7.
  • Cabra Library, Navan Road, Cabra, Dublin 7


For more detailed see the Dublin City Council website:
http://www.dublincity.ie/main-menu-services-planning-planning-news/royal-canal-greenway-part-8