Local TD, Denis Naughten has welcomed the allocation of funding to plan and develop local greenways across counties Roscommon, Longford and Offaly which have huge potential to promote tourism and create long term sustainable job across the region.
As part of this announcement €100,000 has been allocated for the “Lough Ree Greenway” Project to fund a concept and feasibility study for a 68km section of greenway from Tarmonbarry to Athlone.
The funding allocated today comes from the Carbon Tax fund and this was one of the provisions that I argued for as part of Budget 2020 and I welcome the fact that local communities across the midland counties will benefit from this announcement.
This funding is part of an overall strategy to utilise our bogs, public lands and public access to develop more walking and cycling routes across our region which will benefit local families as well as visitors. (see more here: https://denisnaughten.ie/2020/06/01/tourism-recreation-opportunities-on-our-cut-away-bogs/ )
“Bord na Mona has a land holding of just under 200,000 acres across the country, as a result, there is a considerable land bank where peat extraction has already ceased, which would naturally flood, and where work on rehabilitation can start including the provision of recreational facilities such as walking and cycling trails.”
“The decision has already been taken through Project Ireland 2040 to develop a 35,000-acre national wetland park on the Mount Dillon bogs in counties Roscommon & Longford, and today’s announcement of a greenway from Tarmonbarry to Athlone is part of this overall strategy”.
A further example of opening bog land for public access would be the Ballinasloe Parkland Project which would utilise the cut away bogs outside the town of Ballinasloe which it is envisaged will form part of the Dublin/Galway Greenway. Public access alone is already attracting over 50,000 visitors a year to Mount Lucas, Co. Offaly, highlighted Denis Naughten.
This investment compliments the allocation last month of €400,000 to enhance Irelands recently longest walking trail, the Beara Breifne Way, which includes the Hymany Way, Suck Valley Way, Lung Way and the Miners Way through Roscommon & East Galway” concluded Denis Naughten.