The Ulster Canal Greenway is a proposed cross-border network, almost 190km in length which runs from Monaghan to Armagh.
Monaghan County Council currently have a 4.2km greenway which runs along the Ulster Canal on the skirts of Monaghan town. In partnership with Waterways Ireland, Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council and East Border Region Ltd., Monaghan County Council identified and secured funding to develop and launch Phase 2 of the Ulster Canal Greenway project.
The partnership secured €4.95m INTERREG VA funding which will extend the greenway 22km between Smithborough in County Monaghan in the Republic of Ireland across the border in Middletown in County Armagh and is due to open in 2021. Funding was also provided by the Department of Transport Tourism and Sport and the Department of Culture Heritage and the Gaeltacht
The long-term vision is a proposed greenway network almost 190km in length, that will follow the line of the Ulster Canal and other disused railway routes to connect many of the main towns, villages and tourist attractions through the Mid-Ulster region. The greenway will also help promote, protect and retain the local cultural heritage along the canal.
The Greenway is a work in progress. It started off in 2013 with the opening of a 4.2km section through Monaghan town. The funding secured through Interreg is for Phase 2 of the development which is due to open in 2021, and plans are being put in place for future sections.
€4.95m in funding from Interreg Europe and partnership. Staff time from Waterways Ireland, Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council and East Border Region Ltd., Monaghan County Council. To deliver this project, a formal partnership has been established between the stakeholders.
Evidence of success
In December 2016, the Special EU Programmes Body (SEUPB) awarded €4.95 million under the European Union’s INTERREG VA Programme to a Partnership led by Waterways Ireland and involving Monaghan County Council, Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council and East Border Region Ltd to proceed with Phase II of the Ulster Canal Greenway.
Potential for learning or transfer
The Ulster Canal Greenway project and partnership is an example of how local authorities and government agencies working on a border region can collaborate to identify and secure funding to develop a cross border sustainable commuter corridor which can also serve as a tourism product and amenity.