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Green Party TD Steven Matthews meets with Blessington Accessibility Group at launch of Access Report

Date: 28 May 2021

The accessibility report was carried out to assess and identify areas around Blessington Main Street that require improvement creating better access for all. Speaking after the meeting, which was well attended with members of the Blessington & District Forum, Blessington Accessibility Group and Blessington Tidy Towns, Deputy Matthews said:

“I am very impressed with the extent and detail of this report. It provides a clear analysis of barriers to inclusion, mobility and accessibility for elderly persons, people with disabilities, young families, and school children and for all users and visitors to our Main Streets in Blessington.

“The report looked at multiple issues such as footpath conditions, road crossing points, availability of public seating, parking and set down areas, cycling facilities, recreation areas and many other factors that can impact on us as we move around our town. There are often small changes that can be made which might not be noticeable to most people but for someone with reduced mobility it can make a big difference. For example, Blessington has a beautiful wide and long main street, but the pedestrian crossing time allowed is a little too short for comfort for someone who needs a bit more time to cross.

“We should always be striving to ensure everyone is included in how we design and maintain our streets and shared spaces especially for our younger and older residents and visitors. Good design that is welcoming for all and improves enjoyment of our main shopping streets is good for the local economy too. If you enjoy the space and feel comfortable there, its likely you will spend more time socialising and shopping and that brings multiple benefits to our community.

“With this impressive accessibility report and the previous Blessington Town Centre Health Check report, it provides a good basis to develop an action plan on short, medium and long-term objectives to improve the areas highlighted in both reports. Under Green Party funding, Wicklow County Council and the Municipal Districts now have resources and funding to improve active travel, walking, cycling and town centre accessibility. I look forward to working with the local councillors and Municipal District to act on the recommendations in these reports and will be seeking similar reports for Wicklow Town, Arklow and Baltinglass in the near future, concluded Deputy Matthews.



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