Future bright for Templeshannon
Project to link in with bypass and flood relief scheme to breathe new life into area
The future of Templeshannon was laid out for a packed house at Treacy's Hotel last week as Chairman of the Municipal District Council Keith Doyle officially launched the Templeshannon Regeneration Strategy.
Cllr Doyle welcomed business owners, stakeholders and local representatives on the night and outlined how the plans for Templeshannon were just one part of an overall plan which includes the M11 Bypass, the Flood Relief Scheme and the Business and Technology Park at Killagoley. 'Enniscorthy is behind Wexford and Gorey at the moment,' he said. 'But we want to compete and these projects will make a huge difference.'
He said that it was hoped that an 'Enniscorthy Expo' would be held during the summer cover all projects, however, the focus of last week's meeting was Templeshannon.
Head of Development on the Templeshannon project, Brian Galvin, outlined how it was a long-term plan that will stretch over 10 to 15 years, tackling prevalent issues such as traffic, a poor pedestrian environment and dereliction. He outlined how the first phase, consisting of the implementation of a one way system heading into town and down onto the quay and improvement of pedestrian access, would be finished by mid 2019, while a new pedestrian bridge would be installed to link the Waterfront car park with the town centre by 2020.
Manuel Garrido of ARUP Consultants then an engaging presentation on his vision for an area of Enniscorthy that has long been neglected. Mr Garrido said that it was essential that the redevelopment of the area occurs in tandem with the flood relief scheme - 'If we don't have this, we have nothing,' he affirmed. He said that while 'the county council cannot do everything, they can enable the private sector to invest and that's what we're doing here.' He pointed out that, while the council would carry out initial work, the hope is that private investors will then come in and ensure the area continues to grow.
In terms of traffic management, Mr Garrido said that they were faced with two choices in Templeshannon - either get rid of the buildings, or get rid of the cars. After much examination, it was decided that a one-way system would be the best option going forward, increasing the size of the footpaths and allowing people time and space to walk and making the area more attractive to potential shops and businesses. Other areas which Mr Garrido suggested should be looked at going forwards were the arrival area at the railway station and the River Walk from the island. He was firm in his appraisal that Enniscorthy had wonderful potential as a tourist destination and this was something which was backed up by County CEO Tom Enright who said that the town has 'all the ingredients' of a fantastic tourist town.
Mr Enright said that the Office of Public Works was 'committed' to the Flood Defence Scheme and pointed out that the business and technology park at Killagoley finally reached the planning phase the week before. 'We don't want Enniscorthy to become the next commuter town for Dublin,' he said.
'We want people to come and live and work here and that's what we intend on doing with the business and technology park.'
He said that, in relation to the park, planning applications for the buildings will be lodged in the coming months and it is hoped that construction will get underway before the end of the year. He pointed out that the decision to raise property tax and council rates provided the funding for these projects and commended the local representatives on making the 'brave decision' to back the hike.
District Manager Liz Hore thanked everyone for their input and promised to deal with any queries one on one, while also confirming that the full Templeshannon Regeneration Strategy would be published on the County Council website over the coming days.