EU's Phil Hogan pays visit to Lixnaw wetlands
Danny and Johnny Healy Rae's plant hire firm has clinched the tender for the new €2-million Integrated Constructed Wetlands project in Lixnaw, set to begin building in September.
It's a project that will allow for the expansion of a village that is currently stymied by lack of capacity in the local waste water treatment system.
At present, there is capacity for waste from just 300 households, but the new project is expected to provide for capacity of up to 1,200 homes.
EU Agriculture Commissioner Phil Hogan toured the site of the proposed scheme on his Friday visit to Kerry, where he was thanked by a number of party colleagues for the part they say he played in progressing it as a member of cabinet.
"It was Phil Hogan who helped to get the funding approved, he was trying to progress the project for years as minister," one of the chief Fine Gael party members in Kerry and Lixnaw native Frank Quilter, told The Kerryman.
"We were very happy with his visit to Lixnaw and with the news that Johnny Healy Rae is to develop the project. Even though we're on different sides of politics it's good to see it going to a Kerry company who can get it done in the very near future," Frank said.
The contract for the build is expected to be signed shortly.
Mr Quilter added that the maintenance costs of the scheme would be a fraction of existing treatment schemes elsewhere reliant on much heavier infrastructure.
The wetland will consist of four ponds filtering waste water.
"This...Wetland will also feature a walking trail and has been carefully planned to integrate into the natural surrounding landscape," Paul Cremin of Irish Water explained on Friday, thanking the community for its support of the project.
Mr Cremin confirmed the wetlands would benefit from much lower capital and maintenance costs, and come with a projected 'operational' lifespan of up to a century.