Over €8 million allocated to greenways and recreational projects

The Government has allocated over €8 million in funding to 18 strategic projects under the 2018 Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme.

The announcement was made today (Tuesday, November 20), by the Minister for Rural and Community Development, Michael Ring.

The Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme is part of the Government’s Action Plan for Rural Development and provides funding for the development of new outdoor recreational infrastructure and the maintenance, enhancement and promotion of existing outdoor recreational infrastructure in Ireland.

The projects being supported by today’s announcement include:
  • A walking/cycle track on a disused railway line between Clifden and Oughterard, Co. Galway;
  • A new cycle corridor from Lough Key Forest Park to the town of Boyle, Co. Roscommon;
  • A coastal walking route from Youghal Town Centre to Red Barn in Co. Cork;
  • The development of an 18ac municipal park in Killeens, Co. Wexford.

The grants will support a mix of large scale repairs and upgrade measures and new strategic trail development measures, with grants of up to €500,000 each under the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme.

Making the announcement today, Minister Ring said: “I am delighted to announce funding of €8.14 million to 18 projects that encapsulate the diversity of work that is ongoing across the country to provide high-quality recreational infrastructure for visitors and locals alike.

Railway cycle track

“The funding also includes support for the development of a walking/cycle track along the existing disused railway corridor between Clifden and Oughterard in Galway, as well as an iconic trail over 19km along the southern edge of Clew Bay between Belclare and Louisburgh.

In addition, funding will support the development of a new cycle corridor from Lough Key Forest Park and Activity Centre to the town of Boyle, assisting it to realise its tourism and economic development potential.

Approximately €30 million has now been allocated to over 500 projects under this scheme since 2016 to improve walking trails, greenways and other recreational amenities for communities and visitors all over Ireland.

The minister added: “Local authorities, state agencies and communities have spent significant time and effort developing the project proposals over the last number of months and I am very happy to be able to provide the financial resources necessary to support so many projects, whether at local or regional level.”

The funding announced today builds on the €1.8 million that was allocated earlier this year to 128 smaller scale local projects under the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme.

“I will be making further announcements at a later stage in relation to mid-sized projects which have applied for funding under a separate strand of the Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme.”