Galway City Council has been urged to trial a two-way cycle path along the coastal side of the Promenade in Salthill.
Galway Urban Greenway Alliance (GUGA) believes the move could be the first step in laying the groundwork for a spectacular coastal Greenway from Galway to Bearna via Salthill.
“We are asking the Council to create a cycleway along the Prom to enable people of all ages to enjoy the beauty of this route and get some fresh air and exercise,” said Chair of GUGA, Michelle Smyth.
“Creating this cycleway on the coastal side of the Prom would really open up the whole view of the promenade and recent changes, which introduced railings to limit parking and gatherings, means that we now have the ideal circumstances to trial a cycleway, while habits have changed.
“A trial now would also enable us to iron out any issues through consultation and clever design.”
Design plans were previously prepared by Atkins engineers in 2016 on behalf of the Council and the NTA (National Transport Authority) for a cycling Greenway from the Claddagh to Barna.
And GUGA says that if a cycle-way were rolled out, some parking could be facilitated on the Northside of the road, as per the Atkins plan.
Galway Urban Greenway Alliance recently met with representatives of the Village Salthill and that group is broadly supportive of a two-way cycle track on the coastal side of the prom, provided there is consultation with the Council on the planning.
“At a time when we are seeing more and more people affected by conditions like diabetes and heart disease, allowing people to be more physically active would lead to important improvements in the health of Galway people, in addition to the environmental, traffic management and amenity benefits,” added Prof. Francis Finucane, an obesity specialist at UHG and NUIG, who described it as a ‘win-win’.
Infectious Diseases Consultant in UHG Dr. David Gallagher has also urged the council to take this unique opportunity to improve cycling infrastructure and leave a positive legacy in these difficult times.