Cautious optimism as Railway Field negotiations move forward

Councillors sounded a note of optimism as they were informed that the council is to meet with CIE again in the coming week, in relation to the ongoing dispute over the purchase of the Railway Field.

Director of services Barry Kehoe assured Monday’s Athlone Municipal District meeting (December 5 ) that progress is being made, and said he was hopeful of a positive outcome from next week’s meeting.

If the council can secure an agreement in principle to the road layout, they can proceed to a Part 8 planning process.

The Railway Field Road, which would run from the Crescent junction to St Vincent’s Care Centre, is regarded as an essential element in future traffic management plans for the town, particularly in the context of one-way system proposals which are currently on public display.

Cllr Aengus O’Rourke said it was “the first bit of optimism” he had heard in relation to the issue. While he said “the jury is still out” until the fruits of next week’s meeting are revealed, he is hoping for good news at last.

“I am very optimistic and hopeful that we will have good news for the new year,” he said.

Councillors are expecting an update on progress at their monthly Athlone Municipal District meeting in January.

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