Cork tramlines to be integrated into village redevelopment

Historic tramlines are to be integrated into the redevelopment of Blackrock Village in a move that has been described as ‘welcome and sensible.’

The Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr Des Cahill, has said he was delighted to confirm that an amendment has been made to the existing plans in order to incorporate the tramlines into the redevelopment.

The old tramlines were uncovered about eight inches below the road surface during initial exploration works for the Blackrock Village Renewal Scheme.

The tramlines operated on the route from 1898 to 1931, running from Tivoli to Blackrock, in addition to other lines across Cork city from Blackpool to Douglas and Summerhill to Sunday’s Well.

Run by the Cork Electric Tramways and Lighting Company, the trams ceased operation in September 1931 due to the increasing popularity of buses.

Works are currently underway on the long-awaited renewal project, which has finally overcome several years of delays to get off the ground.

Funding shortfalls, architectural delays and the discovery of the tramlines all threatened to derail the project since it was first proposed, though phase one of the works finally began earlier this year.

The plan will see Blackrock Harbour redeveloped as a large, open, paved plaza, with priority for pedestrians and cyclists.

The historic tramlines will now be incorporated either into this plaza, or on the adjacent road.

 The old railway/tram tracks and paving stones unearthed underneath the road in Blackrock village. Inset: A tram in Blackrock. The tramlinesoperated from 1898 to 1931, when they ceased due to the popularity of buses. Picture: Eddie O’Hare
The old railway/tram tracks and paving stones unearthed underneath the road in Blackrock village. Inset: A tram in Blackrock. The tramlines

operated from 1898 to 1931, when they ceased due to the popularity of buses. Picture: Eddie O’Hare

The Lord Mayor welcomed the news.

“It is a very sensible thing to do. The public wanted it done, and now it is being done, and it will integrate, quite happily, the old and the new.”

Mr Cahill said that attentions will now turn to ensuring that funding is committed to complete the project.

To date, some €1.3m has been allocated, but the total cost is closer to €2m.


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