Castleisland Street Plan and River Walk Makeover Warmly Welcomed

Good Luck to all that: January 2023 and Cllr. Charlie Farrelly reacting to appeals from constituents points out an example of the almost obliterated road markings at the Back-of-The Forge in the Castleisland town area. ©Photograph: John Reidy 18-1-2023

It could be code named Operation Transformation but copyright infringement might come into play in spite of the understandable outpourings of joy at Minister Norma Foley’s €600,000 announcement for Castleisland’s Main Street on Friday morning.

The announcement by Minister Foley was rapidly and warmly welcomed like the coming of spring and long evenings locally by her party colleague Cllr. Fionnán Fitzgerald and his independent colleague Cllr. Charlie Farrelly.

That the seriously disintegrating surface of Main Street, Castleisland is to get a €600,000 makeover from top to bottom, from Bawnaluska to Tonbwee couldn’t be but welcomed as it and its inhabitants have endured no more than a patchy existence from years of neglect by all concerned with its upkeep.

Natural Wear and Tear

This, of course, could be put down to the kind of natural wear and tear that road surfaces are subjected to but, years of sewage treatment plant installations going back to the early 1990s and water mains works and the under-grounding of electricity cables have all involved some serious rooting and tearing at street and path in the area for years now.

The promised works will include re-surfacing and road markings as a result of the government announcement.

I wouldn’t like to be the first person to stick the shovel of a digger into the new surface if there’s one of the habitual water mains breaks anywhere in town – so long awaited is this transformation.

Cllr. Farrelly issued a statement on the announcement and, while welcoming the news, he underscored his independent status as he and his colleagues face into the home turn in this year of local elections.

River Walk Transformed

Also on the good news front on Friday was the fact that the stretch of river walk from Herbert Bridge on the Killarney Road to the ancient bridge on Barrack Street has been resurfaced and transformed and is within a whisker of being reopened to its adoring public.

In a statement to The Maine Valley Post, Cllr. Farrelly said that although he is not a member of any government party he warmly welcomes this tranche of funding and he took the opportunity to congratulate all involved in the success of the funding application including district engineer, Jimmy O’Leary and his staff and that of the municipal district.

Pot Holes and Road Markings

“This new overlay work on the Main Street will mean that I will no longer have to ask for pot holes to be filled or road markings to be repainted on an almost weekly basis,” said Cllr. Farrelly.

“This news, added to the upgrade of the pedestrian lights that I secured in the past year through motions submitted to to our municipal district meetings, will mean that Castleisland’s Main Street will be greatly enhanced as a safe place to walk and travel through,” he said.

Commenced on January 2nd

On the issue of the river walk: a notice from the local Kerry County Council Area Engineer Jimmy O’Leary on the week before Christmas advised members of the public that works to upgrade and enhance the Castleisland Town River Walk would commence at 8am on Tuesday, January 2nd 2024.

This was considered and titled as Phase 1 of the river walk upgrade between the Killarney Road and Barrack Street and it was estimated to take approximately six weeks to complete.

A Full Closure

A full closure of the walk between the two bridges was being put into operation from 8am on Tuesday, January 2nd 2024 to 7pm on Friday, February 16th 2024.

As good as their word, there’s a smooth tarmac, widened path now between the bridges. There’s great credit due to all concerned as they didn’t enjoy the best of weather either for this phase of the work.

Now there’s little more that a few finishing touches to be done there before they collect their traps and are out the gap.

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