Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys TD, has today announced €2.6 million in funding to deliver the first ever Town Centre First Plans, which will be key to tackling dereliction and revitalising town centres.
Carrick-on-Shannon is one of the 26 towns selected nationally to be part of this initiative, which is a key part of Our Rural Future – the Government’s ambitious five-year strategy designed to reimagine and revitalise Rural Ireland. It is also linked to the Government’s ‘Housing for All’ strategy and the forthcoming ‘Town Centre First Policy’, which will be announced in the coming weeks.
Under the initiative, Leitrim County Council will be provided with €100,000 to support the development of a unique master plan for Carrick-on-Shannon. The Local authority will now work closely with local community groups, retailers, and the other members of the Town Team in devising and delivering on the objectives of the master plan. The funding will support the local authority, working with a collaborative Town Team, to develop a be-spoke “Town Centre First” (TCF) plan to guide the development of the town.
Announcing the details of the 26 towns, Minister Humphreys said: “This is about delivering on the objectives of ‘Our Rural Future’ and ensuring our towns have the right plan in place to tackle the issues of dereliction, vacant properties, and above all, to become better places to live, work and run a business.
“The development of these 26 Plans will feed into the Government’s overall Town Centre First Policy, which will be launched in the coming weeks.”
“Our rural towns and villages play a central role in the lives of people in rural areas. They are where we live, work, shop and socialise. It is important that we ensure our towns and villages remain vibrant, vital and relevant places.
“Each town selected as part of this initiative will has its own strengths and each will face different challenges as it maps out its future path. No one size fits all policy will work. “
Cathaoirleach of Leitrim County Council, Councillor Paddy O’Rourke welcomed the funding of €100,000 to develop a Town Centre Masterplan for Carrick on Shannon; “this funding will assist the Local Authority, in partnership with the Town Team, to map the future development of our county town, Carrick on Shannon, as well as addressing issues such dereliction and vacancy. I am pleased to see this announcement today and I am confident that this funding will support the ongoing work of the local authority, working with the Town Team, in making Carrick on Shannon a vibrant place to live, work and visit, and will facilitate our county town to respond to emerging opportunities such as remote working and digitalisation.”