Cash for a railway trail that ends nowhere

At the launch of the study by the Commission for the Economic Development of Rural Areas (Cedra), on Monday last, the Taoiseach Enda Kenny lauded the Great Western Greenway in Mayo for its contribution to the local economy and to the regeneration of the area.

The Government is to be commended for announcing funding, last week, for similar initiatives along old rural railways in Waterford, South Kerry and Galway.

However, the Great Southern Trail [GST] Greenway, which has been developed for a length of 50km in Co Limerick, along the former Limerick to Tralee railway, ends in a cul de sac at the North Kerry border; a mere 10km from the town of Listowel. The local authority responsible for continuing with the development is Kerry County Council.

This route wasn’t successful in the recent allocations. When Transport Minister Leo Varadkar opened the extension, from Abbeyfeale westwards to the Kerry county boundary, in February, 2013, he expressed the wish that the initiative by Limerick County Council would be continued onwards to Tralee/Fenit by Kerry County Council. The present situation is ridiculous, with €300,000 having been spent on a 3km extension from Abbeyfeale to nowhere.

Liam O’Mahony

Newcastle West

Co Limerick

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