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Town centre Safe Street programme extended by 12 months to allow full review

By Sean Moriarty

The temporary closure of Plunkett St to vehicular traffic has been extended by another 12 months.

The closure was revealed by the Killarney Advertiser last month and this week Kerry County Council has started its public consultation into the closure.

The town centre street was fully pedestrianised to allow food businesses to serve meals outside and to facilitate social distancing during COVID-19.

Other measures included the widening of footpaths on New St and High St.

The current temporary closing of roads order expires on December 31 but will now be extended to the same date next year.

The purpose of this new closure is to examine the success or failure of several measures that were brought in during the pandemic to allow social distancing on the town’s streets.

“This involved the creation of buildouts to accommodate Outdoor Dining and the creation of public realm areas, which the closure of Plunkett Street facilitated. Feedback from businesses in particular has been very positive, allowing enhanced offerings to the public who have also voiced their support for these developments in the town,” said Angela McAllen, Killarney Municipal District Manager, said at the November KMD meeting.

However, Cllr Donal Grady believes that several of these ‘buildouts’ need to be decommissioned as they are not being used for their designated purpose and are taking up car parking spaces in the town centre.

“Any place that is not being utilised needs to be turned back into parking spaces,” he told the Killarney Advertiser this week.

He added that the lack of parking "is driving people out of town".

Ms McAllen said the Council would look at what areas are being used to their full potential and their future will be decided during the latest closure’s term.

Town centre regeneration is set to commence next year under the Urban Regeneration and Development Fund (URDF).

“The URDF town centre and street upgrade for Killarney was approved in September to proceed to planning and detailed design stage and allows for the consideration for potential inclusion of some of these measures in the wider development of the town centre,” she added.

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30 years of Innisfallen Island MassThe annual special concelebrated Mass on Innisfallen Island takes place next week.

Next Friday (June 21), members of the public are invited to attend the Mass taking place at 6.30pm. Now in its 30th year, the Mass was originally an idea by […]

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Next Friday (June 21), members of the public are invited to attend the Mass taking place at 6.30pm.

Now in its 30th year, the Mass was originally an idea by Geoffrey O’Donoghue who sadly died four years after it began.

“There was an Augustinian Monastery on Innisfallen Island and the people, including priests and monks and they say Brian Boro, went out there to study. The lake, Lough Lein is called ‘The Lake of Learning’,” said his wife Mary who carries on the tradition in his memory.

“My husband Geoffrey was a descendent of the O’Donoghues and he wanted to have Mass on the island. The O’Donoghues built Ross Castle and owned the lands and the lake surrounding it which was later donated by John McShane to the people of Killarney. He [Geoffrey] asked one of the friars and one day he got a call from the OPW that there would be a plaque unveiled to John McShane and they asked if the Mass could coincide with it. It was attended by Sr Pauline, John McShane’s daughter.”

She added that all the public are welcome to attend. Boats, which will have a nominal fee to cover their costs, will be carrying passengers out from 4pm onwards.

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Photo of “hidden gem” wins Camera Club’s latest competition

A photograph of one of Killarney’s hidden beauty spots was deemed the winner of Killarney Camera Club’s most recent competition. Th standard was high throughout all categories but in the […]

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A photograph of one of Killarney’s hidden beauty spots was deemed the winner of Killarney Camera Club’s most recent competition.

Th standard was high throughout all categories but in the Novice category, Iryna Halaieva’s photograph of O’Sullivan’s Cascade was deemed the winner.

“A waterfall is my favourite waterbody and long exposure is my favourite photographic technique,” she said. “I do my best to have as many waterfalls as possible in my photo collection. I heard a lot about O’Sullivan’s Cascade and wanted to visit that hidden gem of Kerry. So, shortly before our club competition I went with a friend to Tomies Wood to photograph it. It was a dream come true for me.”

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