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Galway City Council accused of ‘dragging its feet’ on greenway

Galway City Council has been accused of ‘dragging its feet’ in relation to the development of the Bearna to Salthill Greenway/Cycleway facility, by Connemara Area councillors.

Green Party councillor, Alastair McKinstry, said at Tuesday’s Connemara Area meeting in County Hall that the ‘city had been sitting on this project literally for years’ without advancing it.

Cllr. Tomás Ó Curraoin (Rep. SF) said it ‘was the same ould jazz over again’ as regards this project. “It’s a case of rules and more rules – unless Salthill is done first, it will never happen,” he said.

He added that putting in a cycle lane along this route wasn’t going to damage any wildlife while there was also plenty of room along the Prom [Salthill Promenade] to provide the facility.

“Projects like this can go ahead from Donegal to Kerry and across Spain and France. Every country in the world is doing projects like this and yet we can’t do it heere in Galway,” said Cllr. Ó Curraoin.

Cllr. Dáithí Ó Cualáin (FF) asked ‘when would the day come’ when we’d have solutions to problems rather than stoppages, while Cathaoirleach Noel Thomas (FF) said that a Greenway/Cycleway would have a ‘very, very minimal impact on the environment.

“What a project like this will achieve is to open up the SAC (Special Area of Conservation) and allow people to see the value of it,” said Cllr. Thomas.

Galway County Council Senior Engineer, Rachel Lowe, said that some of the key issues for the project had been identified in a consultant’s assessment [Atkins] relating to the impact on an SAC and the cost element of having to acquire private lands.

She said that the project hadn’t been brought forward yet to the planning stage but she understood that the City Council were employing extra ‘Active Travel’ staff to work on it.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune:

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