Arklow's potential is meeting's subject
Sinn Féin launched a new document entitled 'Unlocking Arklow's Potential' in the Arklow Bay Hotel this week.
Local party members welcomed Sinn Féin Finance spokesperson Pearse Doherty TD to launch the document, which was created following consultation with the public and key stakeholders and which will serve as a 'conversation-starter' regarding the town's future.
Over 100 people were in attendance and the meeting was chaired by Arklow Councillor Mary McDonald.
'The document has come about following extensive consultation with the public and the key stakeholders. The comprehensive document looks at a number of different areas and makes recommendations that, if only a fraction were to be implemented, would go a long way to unlocking the massive potential that Arklow has,' said Deputy John Brady.
'The report is broken into four main areas: infrastructure, public realm plan, employment/retail and tourism. The report looks comprehensively at each of these areas and makes a number of key recommendations,' he said.
Deputy Brady also looked ahead to the potential the town will have once the long-awaited wastewater treatment plant is in place.
'The lack of a sewage treatment has had a negative impact on both the economic and residential development of Arklow. It is anticipated that a planning submission will be made to An Bord Pleanala over the next few months. This in itself will act as a catalyst, helping unlock development that has been stifled by the lack of a water treatment plant. Other key infrastructural projects include the construction of a deep sea port at Arklow Rock, a port access road and slip roads on and off the M11 to the Avoca Road,' he said,
The report makes a number of other recommendations with a view to boosting employment locally.
'Some of the key proposals include a new Occupation of Vacant Commercial Premises Incentive Scheme, also an extension needed to the Arklow Business Enterprise Centre.'
'Arklow is a great town with great people; it has so much potential that unfortunately has been held back. If working together, we could deliver sections of this plan, it would move Arklow forward positively and help create sustainable employment. The report has received a very positive response and I look forward to continued engagement with the key stakeholders with a view to trying to adding to the plan and implementing some, if not all, of it,' Deputy Brady said.