€33 million for active travel for towns and villages across Ireland

€33 million in Jobs Stimulus funding is to be spend on active travel for towns and villages, according to details which have been released tonight.

It follows the announcement last week of €55m in Jobs Stimulus funding for cities and the Greater Dublin Area, which as this website reported includes millions on general road resurfacing.

The funding includes new and revamped footpaths, crossings and cycle routes. As with the funding for cities, the new funding is wide ranging so at this point we cannot firmly establish how much of the cycling section of the funding will be spent on firmer measures such as segregation of cycle tracks.

The Department of Transport said in a press release that the latest funding includes €33 million awarded to 22 local authorities for 531 active travel projects. The statement said: “These projects, which will be implemented this year, include 263 related to the construction and improvement of footpaths, 75 involving cycleway works and 193 associated with improving accessibility.”

The Department also detailed €14 million to 26 local authorities for 273 climate change adaptation measures. The climate change adaptation measures including fixing sea walls, drainage works and repairing road fixed by flooding. The funding is detailed by county in these PDFs:

Eamon Ryan, Minister for Climate Action, Communication Networks, Transport, said: “The Active Travel grant scheme is a very positive initiative which will see communities across the country benefiting from improved and more accessible walking and cycling infrastructure as well as stimulating local employment.”

He added: “The projects included in the scheme can make a real difference to people – footpaths and cycle ways that allow children to walk/cycle to school and to local sport clubs; the dishing of footpaths and pedestrian crossings that improve access to local amenities and links to public transport, and improvements to town and village centres that will support our hard hit retail and hospitality sectors.

Hildegarde Naughton, Minister of State with responsibility for International and Road Transport and Logistics, said: “The recent severe weather has again highlighted the challenges presented by climate change on our road infrastructure. The Climate Change Adaptation grants now being provided will help local authorities to deal with the essential repairs needed in the aftermath of the severe weather but also to take steps towards making their road networks more resilient in the longer term.

“Families and businesses in our villages, towns and cities right across the country will benefit from these important ‘shovel ready’ projects as soon as November this year,” said Minister Naughton.

She added: “The funding being announced today will go a long way in facilitating a secure environment for our children in their daily commute to school as part of our work on the Safe Routes to School initiative.”

I am editor of IrishCycle.com and have reported on and commented on cycling in Ireland for over a decade. My background is in journalism -- I have a BA in Journalism from DCU and HDip in Print Journalism from BCFE. I wrote about cycling for national newspapers, and then started CyclingInDublin.com for overflow stories. Later the website was re-branded to reflect a more national focus.

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