Athlone Town Mayor, Cllr. Aengus O’Rourke, has formally welcomed the allocations announced by Government under the Active Travel scheme which will see Athlone benefit from improved and more accessible walking and cycling infrastructure while at the same time help to stimulate the local economy.
“Athlone will benefit to the tune of €400,000 and I am particularly pleased to see €165,000 allocated to upgrade the road and hard shoulder area outside the National Learning Network site across from the Ericsson software campus in Garrycastle. This is an upgrade for which I have been requesting for a particular period of time. These works will include the provision of an off-road bus stop, pedestrian crossing and linked-up footpaths. This road side area is currently untidy and badly needs this significant investment.
“Also, the €70,000 to provide footpaths and new lighting for our secondary schools linking them more safely to the Greenway and our sporting facilities at Lissywollen is most welcome and necessary.
“This work will also provide a great opportunity to re-examine the possibility of running the school buses from the Athlone Town FC car park in the future, taking much of the peak traffic off Retreat Road. The Golden Mile has been used widely in recent months and has become a very popular walking route.
“A sum of €50,000 has been allocated to widen and enhance the footpath from Talbot Avenue to the ‘White Bridge’ which is additionally welcome. While all this investment is much required, we also need to see continued investment of this nature on a regular basis in our walking and cycling infrastructure around Athlone.
“We have fallen behind in this regard in recent years, so as a town we have quite a bit of catching up to do,” Cllr. O’Rourke asserted.