Church Street in Athlone became one way on Thursday 15th February as part of a €3 million regeneration project aiming to revitalise the heart of Athlone’s central shopping area. The Council is completing advance works at present. From next week (w/c 5th March) the Council will hand the Street over to the appointed contractor John Cradock Ltd.
This will begin the next phase of the enhancement works and the contractor will then be responsible for traffic management under the contract. This will involve diversion of traffic onto the Strand to allow sections of works to be progressed on Church Street while maintaining vehicle and pedestrian access to Church Street throughout.
However, at the junction of Griffith Street with Dublingate St. where works will begin in mid March (and finish in late April), such diversions cannot be facilitated and only local access to Church St will be maintained. Full pedestrian access will remain.
Traffic management measures will be put in place by the contractor and local access to Church Street and access to The Strand will be via Custume Place. Traffic travelling westbound from John Broderick St, Sean Costello St, St Marys Square, Grace Park Road and at the Crescent will follow the Orange Loop on Gleeson Street to Southern Station Road and Northgate Street.
Athlone will remain fully open for business throughout these works and the benefit of the enhanced works will quickly become evident.
Pat Keating, District Manager, Athlone Municipal District said, “Since Church Street went one way on 15th February, traffic has been flowing relatively well along the new Orange Loop and we would like to sincerely thank the local community for their patience and support during this important development project; we apologise for any inconvenience. We will continue to keep people abreast of progress on Westmeath County Council Facebook, Twitter pages and website, as the project continues. Please also check local media for project updates.”
The transformative redevelopment scheme, which is supported under the EU Urban Designated Fund, aims to revitalise the heart of Athlone’s central shopping area both aesthetically and in terms of accessibility, supporting the sustained and future growth of the town. The newly enhanced, high quality area will be an inviting, welcoming space for shoppers, tourists, pedestrians and the wider local community, allowing the area to flourish as a thriving shopping, business and social district. The overall aim of the project is to reinvigorate the retail viability of the area by creating more opportunities for people to gather and spend time, contributing to the economic development of the town centre.”
A new public space at Custume Place will provide a greatly improved image of Church Street when approaching from the heritage/ Shannon area of the town. This will include a plaza area complete with street furniture, bicycle stands and street lighting, as well as planters with flower beds, foliage and native trees. Natural native materials, including granite and Irish blue limestone will be used throughout.