Traders face an anxious wait

Traders in Bridge Street face an anxious wait to find out if they will be included for a funding upgrade under the Government’s Project Ireland 2040 programme.
Traders were disappointed last year when it was announced that Bridge Street would not be part of the current upgrade of Clanbrassil Street/St Nicholas Quarter which got underway last week.
In March of 2018, Frank Pentony, Director of Services in Louth County Council announced that Bridge Street would not initially be part of any upgrade work as the local authority didn’t have enough funds for its inclusion in the project. However, it was explained to traders in the Bridge Street area that the council would continue to look for funding streams to allow work be done at a later date.
Last week it was announced that a funding appeal for Bridge Street had been rejected which leaves the street in limbo. Louth County Council are set to appeal this decision as they believe Bridge Street can easily tie in with the current work being done in Clanbrassil Street at a later date.
According to Joanne Lavelle, who is a part of the Bridge Street Community and Traders Area Regeneration group, the decision to reject the area for funding has left traders disappointed and angry.
“We are very disappointed with this latest development and to be honest we can’t understand why they have reached this decision. We have been told by Louth County Council that they are committed to upgrade Bridge Street but it now seems that this commitment is in jeopardy.
“I’m very happy for other areas and projects that have received funding but I honestly can’t understand why the powers that be have decided that Bridge Street is not in need of an upgrade. Bridge Street and Linenhall Street are in dire need of repair and you have to wonder what criteria the people who make these decisions are using.
“We understand that Louth County Council are appealing this decision and we would love to meet up with council officials to find out exactly what is happening here. We want to be part of the improvements that are happening around the town and we feel that we are being abandoned. I would like to think that the council are still supporting us and can give us some cause for hope but as I said earlier first we need to get sitting down with somebody in there to hear their thoughts on the current situation,” stated Joanne.

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