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Protecting infrastructure such as the Tuam to Athenry railway line is one step in ensuring that future investment and development in the west is not put at risk, that is according to the majority of county councillors who fiercely disagreed with suggestions that hopes of one day reopening the line should be abandoned and a greenway put in its place.
Viewed as one of the most enjoyable networking events of the Midlands business calendar, this year’s MidlandsIreland.ie Best in Business Awards is just a week away.
Nominations for the MidlandsIreland.ie Best in Business Awards are now being sought. Hosted by the Midlands Gateway Chamber these annual awards, now in their third year, celebrate excellence and innovation in businesses across the Midlands.
President of Midlands Gateway Chamber, John Humphries said this week “We’re not gone away you know!”.
The Tuam to Athenry section of the Western Rail Corridor is still very much a viable option and is a valuable piece of infrastructure for the west of the country that should be protected, that is according to county councillors who voted this week to remove it from the Galway County Walking and Cycling Strategy which had proposed it as a possible walking and cycling greenway.
Last week’s decision by Minister for the Environment Phil Hogan to scrap the National Spatial Strategy has left the Midlands in limbo, according to Deputy Robert Troy.
Put the Midlands at the top of your list for development, is the message being sent from the new president of the Midlands Gateway Chamber to the Irish Government.
Rail passengers from Galway will be using bus services between the city and Athenry this weekend.
In a statement this week, Senator Lorraine Higgins has urged for swift action to be undertaken in alleviating the traffic congestion which has been caused by train delays at Athenry. She insists that “Irish Rail must adopt an imaginative solution to the persistent traffic chaos that ensues when trains are delayed at Athenry. Unless something is done immediately, the town will lose significant trade to neighbouring areas.” When trains on the Galway/Limerick and Dublin/Galway are delayed on the single track system, it has a significant knock-on effect, not just on arrival and departure times for passengers.”
It was a rocky week for the West on Track campaigners who seemed to have taken a severe blow on Tuesday when the Minister for Transport, Tourism, and Sport Leo Varadkar was quoted in The Irish Times as saying that the line would not be extended from Athenry to Tuam.