COMMERCIAL interests in the town centre area are to begin a campaign to have their businesses advertised along the route of the local bypass.
They claim that they are witnessing a steady downturn of passing trade since the opening of the Castleisland Bypass in October 2010. They also feel that, through this campaign, all they are doing is quite literally 'Minding their Own Business.
Bed and breakfast interests in the area were first to notice the drop-off in business and this has been followed in more recent times by a spreading of the downturn to others depending on the socalled passing trade.
While the National Roads Authority has turned its face against allowing any form of commercial signage on the bypass road itself, the Healy-Rae brothers, Cllr. Danny and Michael TD have, in turn, brought the matter to the attention of Kerry County Council and Dail Eireann respectively.
here was little joy for the brother on both occasions as Minister for Transport, Tourism & Sport, Leo Varadkar, T.D. told Mr. Healy-Rae that road signage of this nature is a matter for the National Roads Authority under the roads acts of 1993 to 2007 and in conjunction with the local authorities concerned.
While traders here may point to the proliferation of business signs between here and Tralee it is unlikely to cut any ice with the NRA.
The established signs for hotels and other businesses were well rooted there before the 1993 act and the NRA ban on signage on the under construction Tralee bypass will not apply to them for obvious reasons.
However: last week here, Cllr. Michael Gleeson proposed that the viewing area at Glounsharoon should be tackled and substantially upgraded to compliment Kerry's position as a leading light in Irish tourism.
The refurbished lay-by would, Cllr. Gleeson proposed, include aesthetically appropriate landscaping and a tourism information centre.
A joined up thinking session could and should involve the traders of Castleisland in its development.
This would assure them that their place of business and produce or stock is put on show for the passing parade. That's a privilege we once took for granted in our gridlocked days.