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25 Sept 2022

Spiralling building costs prompt Longford council chiefs to submit 'revised' budget to government over €14m Camlin Quarter plan

Camlin Quarter €10.4m Regeneration Funding  will be a game changer for Longford town and county

Council bosses have revealed a revised budget for the Camlin Quarter has been sent to the Government amid spiralling building and inflation costs

Longford County Council bosses have tabled a revised budgetary plan to the Government amid fears a €14m fund set aside for the county town's Camlin Quarter masterplan will fall short in bringing the project to fruition.

 

It comes after the Leader published a two page special on the county's regeneration blueprint and how council chiefs are still hoping to press ahead with those plans despite spiralling building and inflationary costs.

In a statement, the council outlined how the Camlin Quarter project comprised of five sub-projects, namely the Providers Building, as well as Church Street and Barracks Plaza, Little Water Street and Link Road, Bridge Street and Great Water Street, and Abbeycartron and Albert Reynolds Peace Park.

"For the Camlin Quarter Project, an updated business plan, including updated costs taking into account construction price inflation for all five sub projects, has been prepared and submitted for approval to the Urban Regeneration and Development Fund section of the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage."

That admission came after Junior Housing Minister and Longford-Westmeath TD Peter Burke invited the council to submit a "budget review" to his department to ensure this "critical investment" for Longford town remained firmly on track.

The council also revealed plans for the county town's former greyhound track are "being advanced" after the local authority snapped it up back in January. 

Regeneration - Longford's 'golden ticket' or just a mere pipe dream?

It’s been seven years since the word ‘regeneration’ was first uttered as a remedy that could transform Longford town and county for generations to come.

Soaring building and inflation costs raise doubts over Longford's €14m Camlin Quarter regeneration plan

The €14m ring fenced to undertake a large scale overhaul of Longford town’s so-called Camlin Quarter is unlikely to meet the cost of that project due to soaring building costs and rapidly increasing inflation, the Leader has learned.

In terms of a proposed €4m Longford Connected Project involving recent works on the county town's Market Square, local authority officials said the fruits of those efforts were starting to pay dividends. 

"At present, the Longford Connected project is under construction," added a statement.

"This public realm enhancement project covers Market Square (front section), Longford Shopping Centre, and Grafton Court (which links Longford Shopping Centre to the Main Street). Contractors started on this public realm enhancement project at Market Square in early July. Significant progress has been made to date.

"Following completion at Market Square, the contractor will then start work on the Longford Shopping Centre and Grafton Court sections."

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