The Tralee – Fenit ‘Goldway’ mentioned in the Dáil.

The Tralee to Fenit Greenway was mentioned in the Dáil yet again recently this time during a debate on the finance bill.

Minister Brendan Griffin was waxing lyrically about the benefits of Greenways while welcoming the extra €50 million allocated for greenway development in the budget, lets hope we see some of that funding down here next year !

I am glad that an extra €50 million has been allocated to greenway development, which has sustainability written all over it. There is huge potential for additional greenways. Research shows that every euro spent on greenways has a massive return in terms of economic activity. An example of that is the greenway from Westport to Achill. I was on the route from Newport to Mulranny in 2010 and it was a short, quiet greenway. I went back in 2013 and when I was sitting in a hotel in Achill waiting for a taxi to bring me back to Westport after completing the greenway I wrote a blog entitled “Why greenways should be called goldways”. Activity on the route included taxi hire, cafés, bicycle hire and many other little shops doing very well out of it. There is great potential to do even more in that regard. Members know of the Dungarvan greenway, which is going very well, and there is much more potential in terms of canal banks, old railway lines and various other assets. In terms of old railway lines, I am particularly familiar with the south Kerry line from Farranfore to Valentia Harbour and lines from Tralee to Fenit and Kilmorna to Listowel. Not only are those assets available but we have an obligation to those gone before us who built those fantastic feats of engineering by hand to make the most of those resources. Not to do so would be a terrible waste. Those fantastic feats of engineering were put in place in the late 1800s when there was little machinery to assist in their construction. We have an opportunity to make the most of them for this generation and for future generations and need to grasp that opportunity. I am, therefore, glad that €50 million has been allocated for drawdown in 2019, 2020 and 2021 and will be working on that within my Department.

You can read the full thread here.

 

Photo – Minister Griffin walking the yet to be developed part of the line north of Mounthawk in 2013.

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Brendan Griffin walks the line

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Joe Cotter [ St. Brendan’s Park Residents Committee], Brendan Griffin [TD] and Mike o’Neill [Fenit Development Association]
Kerry TD Brendan Griffin paid a visit to the newly developed Tralee section of the greenway yesterday and  also took the time to walk along the as yet undeveloped sections of both the Fenit line and the North Kerry line towards Ballyroe .

Earlier this month Brendan was was at the other end of the line when he inspected line near the Limerick border as well as the GST extension on the Limerick side of the border. As a member of the Oireachtas Transport Committee he has vowed to do all that he can to ensure CIE to protect this valuable state asset.

Brendan has been vocal on these issues in the past and his recent article  Why Greenways should be called Goldways…  shows he truly understands the the value of these projects.

Minister for Transport indicates support for the Greenway

Brendan Griffin TD raised the development of a cycle-walk way between Tralee and Fenit in the Dail recently, in reply Minister for Transport Alan Kelly gave his support and confirmed the fund for the project remains in place despite the recent difficulties.

I am fully supportive of the Tralee to Fenit Greenway. Given the project’s potential to contribute to both sustainable transport goals and to local tourism, the funding commitment from my Department remains in place. While the route is primarily a matter for Kerry County Council to progress, I understand that they are experiencing difficulties due to encroachment onto CIE lands. I therefore raised this specific issue with CIE and have communicated the need to ensure such encroachment is addressed.