Greenway Study Postponed Following Galway City Council Vote

The Western Railway Corridor

A vote in Galway County Council this evening has resulted in the postponement of a feasibility study for the development of a Greenway on the disused railway alignment connecting Ballindine to Athenry via Tuam.

The Western Railway Corridor (WRC) currently has disused sections at Tubbercurry, Charlestown, Swinford, Kiltimagh, Claremorris, Ballindine, Milltown, and Tuam.

Previous studies have concluded that re-development of the WRC on these sections is a non-starter due to a lack of population density, which would be required to sustain the railway as a viable operation. Despite these studies, Cllr. Billy Connelly this evening proposed a motion that the council wait until a government report from Sean Canney T.D. dealing with the stability of the WRC is finalised. The report has been 18 months in the pipeline. The motion was seconded by Cllr. Peter Feeney.

Those in favour of moving ahead with the Greenway plans say that the first phase of the reinstated railway (the Ennis to Athenry section completed in 2010), has “proved unsuccessful, attracting insufficient passenger numbers and suffers heavy losses, requiring significant annual subvention to cover operating costs.”

The Galway Eye understands from a source within the council chamber that over 4,000 signatures in favour of the Greenway were collected from people living in the affected areas earlier this year and that a march in Tuam calling for progress on the Greenway was supported by the majority of businesses in the town.

This is how Galway County Councillors voted this evening:

Move ahead with Greenway feasibility study:

Cllr. Joe Byrne
Cllr. James Charity
Cllr. Shaun Cunniffe
Cllr. Shane Donnellan
Cllr. Michael Finnerty
Cllr. Mary Hoade
Cllr. Peter Keaveney
Cllr. Mark Donagh Killilea
Cllr. Martina Kinane
Cllr. Karey McHugh
Cllr. Ivan Canning
Cllr. Peter Roche
Cllr. Noel Thomas
Cllr. Séamus Walsh
Cllr. Thomas Welby

Wait for WRC stability report:

Cllr. Tim Broderick
Cllr. Donal Burke
Cllr. Niamh Byrne
Cllr. Billy Connelly (Proposed)
Cllr. Dermot Connolly
Cllr. Michael Connolly
Cllr. Gabriel Cronnelly
Cllr. Seosamh Ó Cualáin
Cllr. Tomás Ó Curraoin
Cllr. Jim Cuddy
Cllr. Aidan Donohue
Cllr. Michael Fahy
Cllr. Peter Feeney (Seconded)
Cllr. Gerry Finnerty
Cllr. Tom Healy
Cllr. Pat Hynes
Cllr. Des Joyce
Cllr. Frank Kearney
Cllr. Michael Maher
Cllr. Eileen Mannion
Cllr. Jimmy McClearn
Cllr. Tom McHugh
Cllr. Malachy Noone
Cllr. Seán Ó Tuairisg

About the Author

Mark White
A native of Dublin, Mark has slowly been moving West since 1997. Schooled at Gonzaga College and CBS Dun Laoghaire, he received his undergraduate degree in Software Engineering from Athlone Institute of Technology in 2002. Mark spent a number of years working as a C# Developer in the industry before deciding to undertake a research masters in Information Technology at NUI Galway in 2010. His work resulted in a new algorithm to reduce energy consumption in virtualised data centres and has been since published. He fills his working day writing software, taking photographs and editing The Galway Eye.