Funding confirmed for Kildare Greenways – Nov 9

Clauda Dalby writes about Kildare Greenways in the November 14 edition of the Liffey Champion.

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€2.9m funding confirmed for Kildare Greenways

Funding amounting to €2.9m has been allocated to extending the Grand Canal Greenway by 15km from Aylmer Bridge to Sallins.  The announcement was made on Monday November 9, by Ministers Eamon Ryan and Hildegarde Naughton.  A total of €63.8m was allocated for Greenways across the country, which is the highest single annual amount ever allocated to Greenway funding. 

Cllr Joe Neville told Liffey Champion on Monday that this is a great opportunity for Celbridge and Ardclough in particular.

“Being able to cycle in a safe area brings a number of health benefits – for teenagers, adults, kids” he said “commuters could conceivable cycle from Celbridge towards Dublin”.

Citing the Dungarvan Greenway as an example of a successful tourism venture, he says that the Grand Canal Greenway opens the county of Kildare to lots of tourism.  

“We need to ensure we are marketing all areas and benefiting from everything we have” he said “We have two canals here in this district that we have basically ignored for the last few years, we need to see a benefit from them.  There’s some hope that that is the case people could cycle out on a Saturday afternoon rather than drive somewhere.

What’s more important as councillors we need to see structures are in place to enable people to get out of their cars. Increased vehicle usage on our roads has a negative impact on their use by pedestrians and cyclists.  There’s no point in telling a 12-year old to go off on their bike without safe bike lanes.”  said Cllr Neville. 

“Should we have less reliance on cars: yes.  It’s up to councils and the state to put things in place so that roads can be safe.  For now, designated walking and cycling lanes will allow people to connect with nature and spend time in fresh air.  Greenways allow us to see the natural amenities and see nature at work in a safe environment.  Eventually, it will be possible to cycle all the way from Dublin to the Shannon.” 

A tender for the Greenway works is currently being prepared by Kildare County Council.  Work is due to commence in 2020 and completion expected by the end of 2021. 

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The stretch of Greenway discussed here will be on the South Bank of the Grand Canal.  Starting at Aylmer’s Bridge, west of Hazelhatch to Lock 13 at the Lyons Estate, then onto Henry Bridge at Ardclough, Ponsonby Bridge at Baronrath, Devonshire Bridge at Killeenmore, Lock 14 and Lock 15 and then to the Railway Bridge and into Sallins.