Ten subsidised serviced sites to be provided in Moate

The provision of 10 subsidised serviced sites for those wishing to build their own homes in Moate town was approved at the monthly meeting of Westmeath County Council and approved on the proposal of Cllr Vinny McCormack, seconded by Cllr Tom Farrell.

Members were assured that this project will incorporate “practically all the environmental improvements the council has wanted to make in that area over the years such as renovating the lands, putting in a good quality road, footpaths, parking around the playground, and moving the stone associated with the Patrick Kelly Memorial Park, chief executive, Barry Kehoe promised.

However, Mr Kehoe stressed that developing private sites like these and putting them on the market is not a money maker, it costs money. “It is going to cost in the between €900,000 and €1 million to develop these sites and sale of the sites is unlikely to realise more than €500,000,” he explained. The council will be applying for Croi Conaithe funds to meet the shortfall, he said.

Cllr McCormack who had sought an assurance that the monies from the sales of the sites would be pumped back into the community, accepted the CE’s assurance that the project would incorporate all the improvements the members had been seeking.

“This will be the makings of Moate and gives a future to people wanting to build their own affordable homes,” Cllr Farrell declared. He urged that none of the sites would be left idle for 10 years. Cllr Farrell was anxious that Moate Celtic soccer pitch would be permitted development in tandem with it. He was assured that the bottle banks and bins “will be resolved”.

Cllr Frank Keena was anxious that the playground be upgraded. “We will sort out the playground in some other matter,” Mr Kehoe promised.

Cllr Michael Dollard remarked that Beech Grove and Brookfield in Mullingar were similar type developments and “huge success stories”. “There are a lot of people out there who do not satisfy local needs,” he said and he called for more of the same in Mullingar and Athlone.

Mr Kehoe assured him that Mullingar and Athlone are on the list for such developments and pointed out that there is one scheme underway in Mullingar at the moment. However, he warned: “It’s not cheap and never will be again because the cost of putting in infrastructure now is enormous and that challenges all development, wherever it is taking place”.

The proposal is to provided 10 subsidised serviced sites, to include provision of service road, wastewater, water, electrical cabling and amenity open space, at Killeenboylegan, Clara Road, Moate. After the sites are sold, but before any building starts, a road safety assessment will be carried out.