Waterford Fine Gael Senator John Cummins has welcomed the allocation of an additional €570,000 for Waterford City and County Council under the new ‘Additional Outdoor Infrastructure Fund’. Eleven projects have been approved across the city and county. Overall, the €13 million fund will help ensure a Safe Outdoor Summer supporting 234 projects across 30 local authorities.
Senator Cummins said “Local authorities were invited to apply to the funding stream in late April for short term measures which would enhance outdoor urban space and improve walking and cycling facilities. The measures are now being introduced as quickly as possible to support the gradual re-opening of society in a safe manner and include projects such as kerb widening to facilitate outdoor dining, new on street furniture, improved cycling facilities, and traffic management changes that prioritise pedestrians and cyclists”.
“In Waterford, projects include works to four city centre streets, two projects in Tramore, two projects in Dungarvan and one each in Dunmore East, Clonea and Ardmore. Some of the works have already been actioned by Waterford City and County Council and I would like to commend the proactive work they have carried out to date and I would hope that the remainder of the works can be actioned without delay.
The Additional Outdoor Infrastructure Fund is being administered by the National Transport Authority (NTA) as part of its overall national funding programme. Senator Cummins added “These measures, combined with other government initiatives for outdoor dining and outdoor recreation infrastructure, will support local authorities in re-creating open spaces and facilities which will both take into account public health guidelines and allow communities to thrive once again.
“We have seen a very successful reopening of the hospitality sector in the past week with outdoor dining a key feature. Obviously the weather has behaved itself and we could get out and enjoy some food and drink without the worry of getting wet but the investment in permanent measures to facilitate outdoor dining and events is something which I hope we can maintain into the future.
Minister of State Hildegarde Naughton TD said: “As we gradually emerge from restrictions, it is important that the public can enjoy the summer months in a safe manner. These projects will play an essential role in making that happen. Whether it’s choosing to walk or cycle on new infrastructure or meeting friends in a designated communal space, these new spaces will enable the public to travel and gather in a safe environment.”