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Monday 22 September 2014

Greenways: New 40km path for Midlands

Paul Melia Environment Correspondent

Published 15/05/2014 | 12:28

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A 40km dedicated bicycle track is to be built between Athlone and Mullingar as part of the latest round of funding for Greenways.

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Public Transport Minister Alan Kelly said the €4m cycle path between the midlands’ towns will run along a disused railway corridor that was once a branch of the old Midlands Great Western Railway.

The scheme is part of a grand plan to build a continuous off-road greenway between Dublin and Galway. Some 40 construction jobs will be created.

Funding for schemes in Galway, Waterford, Tipperary, Clare, Roscommon, Kildare, Limerick and Roscommon are also being funded under the €10m package announced today.

"Ireland can become one of the world's greatest countries for cycling tourism,” Mr Kelly said.

“Developments like the Athlone-Mullingar Greenway will help attract tourists from all over the world. Between construction and increased tourism activity along the route - we estimate about an additional eighty jobs will come to the local economy. Two of Ireland's key midland towns will be connected by bike for the first time and it is a terrific way to utilise old railway corridors.”

The Athlone-Mullingar greenway will start at Garrycastle and pass through scenic landscape via Moate, Streamstown, Castletown and onto Grange south in Mullingar where it will link with the recently constructed Royal Canal greenway which extends to the Meath/Westmeath border.

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