Minister of State Hildegarde Naughton officially opened the 3 projects. The N69 Listowel to Abbeyfeale section of the North Kerry Greenway, the Tralee to Fenit Greenway and the N70 Brackaharagh road in Caherdaniel are now officially open to walkers, wheelers, cyclists and road users.
The Programme for Government has committed to delivering a substantial programme of Greenways and cycling and walking infrastructure all around the country. These new projects in Kerry were funded by the Department of Transport and delivered by Kerry County Council and Transport Infrastructure Ireland, providing sustainable connectivity in the region.
The N69 Listowel to Abbeyfeale section of the North Kerry Greenway includes a 10.5 kilometre stretch of greenway from Listowel to the Limerick County Bounds. The Greenway has been developed along a disused railway line and will link to the Great Southern Trail which extends from Abbeyfeale for 50 kilometres into County Limerick. When the Listowel to Fenit phases of the Greenway are complete, it will extend over 90 kilometres in length from Limerick to Fenit.
The Tralee to Fenit Greenway consists of the construction of a 11.2 kilometre Greenway on the Tralee to Fenit old railway line. It stretches from the townland of Ballynahoulort in Tralee to the village of Fenit. The Greenway will provide locals with a sustainable transport corridor linking Tralee town centre and Tralee Train Station to Mounthawk at Bracker O’Regan Road. It will also give tourists and recreational cyclists a safe route to enjoy the views over Tralee Bay and provide a key link with the trans-European EuroVelo Route.
The N70 Brackaharagh Project includes upgrade and widening of a 1.2 kilometre section of the N70 National Secondary Road and construction of a new segregated cycle way. The N70 forms a significant part of the Ring of Kerry tourist route and provides an important link from the Iveragh Peninsula to the National Primary Network and to other transport modes.
Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan said, “I was in Kerry in late June where I met with County Council officials and public representatives and opened a section of the Tralee to Fenit Greenway. At that time, I stressed the importance of moving quickly to re-think how we get around, by making our roads safer and by putting in place segregated cycle and walking networks to ensure that more people can choose to walk, wheel or cycle. It is a testament to Kerry County Council that these 3 projects are now finished and ready to open. We all know that Kerry attracts many visitors, but these projects are for locals first and foremost, to make it easier and more enjoyable for them to move around, with and without a car.”
Minister of State Hildegarde Naughton said, “we have allocated approximately €60 million for Greenways alone this year as well as over €285 million in walking and cycling infrastructure around the country to enable people to safely choose to walk or cycle instead of using the car. The opening of these projects in Kerry today are just some of the many infrastructure schemes we are committed to progressing over the lifetime of the government.”
“These 3 projects will allow those living in the vicinity to travel for school, work or to local amenities on foot or bike as well as providing an important recreational feature which will support the local tourism offering and foster economic growth in the local area.”
Peter Walsh Chief Executive TII stated, “the Tralee to Fenit Greenway, the N70 Brackaharagh ‘Active Travel’ project and the N69 Listowel to Abbeyfeale Greenway all deliver sustainable active travel transport options for residents and visitors alike, whilst providing a safer environment for all road users.”
Cathaoirleach of Kerry County Council, Cllr John Francis Flynn said, “this is a historic day for the county. The opening of 2 new Greenway routes and the route at Brackaharagh not only enhances the reputation of Kerry as a prime location for walking and cycling infrastructure, it also greatly enhances our tourism offering as well as the local economy. We can look forward in anticipation to the development of the South Kerry Greenway and the linking of the various routes which will enable users to enjoy the county’s beautiful landscape.”
Chief Executive of Kerry County Council, Moira Murrell said, “I want to acknowledge the support of the Department of Transport in funding these Greenways and I want to thank local landowners and local communities for their cooperation and support. I also thank the staff of Kerry County Council who have worked for so many years to develop these essential amenities.”