#DoolinPier – A new Atlantic seaboard pier sought by ferry operators and fishermen at Doolin in County Clare is expected to be completed by mid-2015 following the signing of a major marine infrastructural project today.
Brendan Howlin, T.D., Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform was in Doolin this afternoon to visit the location of the proposed €6m pier project for the County Clare coastal village.
Minister Howlin's visit coincided with the signing by Clare County Council of a contract with L&M Keating, the successful tenderer for the construction of the new pier. Construction work will begin in the coming days and is expected to be completed by mid-2015.
Mayor of Clare Cllr. Joe Arkins commented: "This project has been long sought after by ferry operators, fishermen and tourists who use the pier. The new pier development will boost visitor numbers in Clare considering access to the Aran Islands from the County will be greatly enhanced once the project is completed."
He added: "The completed pier will be used mainly to facilitate ferry activity between North Clare and the Aran Islands and the Cliffs of Moher during the tourist season while the existing pier will be available to accommodate other activities – both leisure based and otherwise. The new pier will ensure that Doolin is accessible in all tidal conditions, which will be of particular benefit to Doolin Search and Rescue as well as the ferry operators."
"I want to congratulate Clare County Council and its consultants who have worked closely with interested parties in ensuring that the completed pier brings a wide range of benefits to its users and the wider community," said Mayor Arkins.
Tom Coughlan, Clare County Manager added: "I am delighted that construction of this vitally important piece of infrastructure will commence shortly following years of open debate and extensive consultation with users of the pier, as well as the local community."
He continued: "The Local Authority has invested considerable time and resources into ensuring that the Doolin Pier project is one that benefits all users of the existing pier. Once completed, this project will have significant, positive economic and social consequences for the people of North Clare and the wider region. For example, the construction phase of the project will create jobs as will the increase in business that will arise as a result of the Pier's completion."
Tom Tiernan, Senior Engineer and Doolin Pier Project Manager stated: "I wish to pay tribute to the Council Consultants, led initially by Malachy Walsh and Partners, who guided the project from its inception through the various stages of planning, including the preparation of the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) which facilitated An Bord Pleanala's decision in 2013 to give the go ahead for the construction of a new pier. I also want to thank Punch Consulting, who are leading the project through its tender and construction stages."
"The next stage of the Pier project is construction which will get underway almost immediately. L & M Keating Ltd, with whom Clare County Council signed a contract with today, is a well established Marine Works contractor and we look forward to working with the company. We anticipate that the project will be completed around mid 2015," concluded Mr. Tiernan.