INSPIRED BY IRELAND'S NEW GREENWAY!
by Beverly Grova
On a recent visit to Ireland, my family visited the Waterford Greenway a relatively new addition to the area. We began our journey at the Coach Cafe, a repurposed factory building made into a very cool coffee house with Greenway branded coffee cups, a wood stove, and customers of all ages. In the same building was the bike rental shop that featured electric bikes and toddler carriers.
It was a bit late in the day so we opted for a walk on the Greenway instead of biking. An impressive sign showing the entire 23 km route and our placement within it guided us onto the Greenway. We chose to walk toward a nearby town where we were greeted by signs encouraging us to leave the Greenway for a few minutes, park our bikes and enjoy a Guinness. Tasteful signs also indicated restrooms and WiFi.
People jogged past us, walked their babies, zoomed past on bicycles and strolled along deep in conversation. We walked past stone walls, over bridges, through towns and scattered along the way were small historic structures restored or in the process of restoration with explanatory signage. Many related to the former rail system that was removed to create this amazing Greenway.
I was impressed with the tasteful aesthetics, the quality of the amenities surrounding the route and the number of tourists taking part. Clearly a major tourist attraction, it was one of the high points on our visit to Ireland and one to which I would return.
When I saw the Greenway in Ireland, I realized how amazing it would be for our community to have this type of asset and I’m so excited that we actually have the opportunity to do just that.