Westmeath County Council seeking community views on vision for Athlone

Westmeath County Council is inviting representatives of the local community and key town and regional stakeholders to input into a new Urban Design and Regeneration Framework for Athlone.

The framework will lead to the creation of a visionary, ambitious and creative design masterplan that will map out how Athlone can realise its full economic and social potential. Funding for the initiative is provided by the Urban Regeneration and Development Fund, part of the Government’s Project Ireland 2040 programme, which designates Athlone as a Regional Growth Centre.

To understand the needs and aspirations of the Athlone community, Westmeath County Council is running an online survey at www.athloneframework.ie as part of a co-design process. The survey results will be used by the project team to inform and shape the Urban Design and Regeneration Framework with responses to be received by 5pm on Friday, April 22.

“Through the development of the framework we are seeking to establish a vision alongside a set of priority design interventions to positively respond to and continue to build on Athlone’s growing cultural and tourism profile,” said Cllr Frankie Keena, Cathaoirleach, Westmeath County Council. “The vision will be an opportunity to embrace the strengths of our town centre and its heritage and to re-imagine the town’s public realm and architectural assets. We are also interested in changing our relationship with the river and canal and to use them more effectively for recreation and connectivity.

“We are excited to engage with the public and key stakeholders over the coming weeks to gather insights and discuss the regeneration of Athlone. Planning and place-making consultants Turley have been appointed to lead a multi-disciplinary team tasked with creating the Framework. The team will bring forward design proposals for Athlone’s urban core area, as well as shape an emerging Tourism and Cultural Quarter to the west of the town.”

Seamus Donohoe, director, Turley, added: “The Athlone Urban Design and Regeneration Framework is a chance to plan for a more prosperous and vibrant Athlone. We want to ensure Athlone is a great place to live, work and visit – the framework will set out and help us achieve this ambition.

“We are thrilled to once more have the opportunity to support Westmeath County Council in this exciting regeneration and place-making project. Our co-design approach, which includes rigorous and integrated stakeholder engagement, ensures that proposals will be underpinned by an evidenced-based approach to design and promote a comprehensive vision for the area.”

Deirdre Reilly, regeneration project manager, commented: “We’re delighted to be able to launch this survey, which provides an opportunity for residents, communities and local businesses to help shape proposals, and set out priorities for the future of Athlone. I would encourage anyone who lives or works in the town to complete the survey, so we can take their views into account.”

To complete the findings survey, find out more information and sign up to the online event visit www.athloneframework.ie

Members of the public can also contact the project team by emailing turley@athloneframework.ie or calling the Freephone consultation hotline on 1800-010101.


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