FAST-TRACK the Limerick Northern Distributor Road (LNDR), develop a reliable bus and cycle network, put more Gardaí into community policing and establish a Minister for City Regions to ensure balanced regional development is achieved.
These are the key asks of Limerick Chamber in its ‘Mid West Business Priorities for General Election 2020’ manifesto.
Chief executive Dee Ryan said that in addition to the nationwide challenges of increased insurance rates and cross industry skills shortages, local businesses are battling some unique challenges that the Chamber wants to draw both election candidates’ and voters’ attention to ahead of the General Election on February 8.
“Top of our list is the fast-tracking of the Northern Distributor Road, which is necessary to alleviate the 40-50 minute delays for workers and students leaving the Technological Park in Plassey,” she commented.
Chamber Chief Economist, Dr Catriona Cahill believes that in tandem with the LNDR, Limerick needs a modern, regular, rapid bus system connecting all of our county towns and suburbs with our centres of work and learning.
“A reliable public transport network is of critical importance. In addition, a dedicated cycle network must also be delivered to encourage safe, sustainable and healthy modes of transport.
“We would ask our members and the public to tell their candidate that they want regular, rapid bus connections. We need safe, segregated cycle lanes. And we want the Northern Distributor Road fast-tracked for government funding,” Dr Cahill told the Limerick Post.
Objecting to extensions at Castletroy Shopping Centre and the Crescent Shopping Centre in recent times, Limerick Chamber is a vocal advocate of city centre revitalisation.
“Businesses across the whole Mid West will benefit from a thriving urban experience at its heart. A strong city will help attract companies and talent to locate/stay here. That is why Limerick City Centre revitalisation is a key focus for us in the Chamber,” Ms Ryan pointed out.
“A sense of security and safety is also crucial to ensuring that people want to return to Limerick to live and work. Currently our Community Policing numbers across Limerick have been reduced by Gardaí being deployed to security duties in the Mulgrave Street Court House and the recruitment drive by the Garda Traffic Core, which is attracting regular Gardaí applications. This should be an issue for candidates and voters.
“We need to protect the gains we have made against criminality in Limerick by increasing our community policing numbers immediately. We need people to ask candidates how many additional Gardaí for community policing will they bring to Limerick,” the Chamber chief executive concluded.