“Riverine Project scuppered because of government failure and An Bord Pleanála delays” – Pearse Doherty TD

DONEGAL TD Pearse Doherty said it ‘unforgivable’ that the Riverine Park Project has resulted in a major loss of EU funding. 

Reacting to the news that the project cannot be completed with the funding deadline, Deputy Doherty said it is unforgivable that this project will now not be completed within the timeframe necessary due to delays in decisions at multiple Irish state agencies.

This is despite the fact that the project was awarded almost €12 million in EU funding.


Pearse Doherty TD.

Teachta Doherty said: “Blame must be directed at both An Bord Pleanála and the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage.

“Planning permission cannot be provided in time by An Bord Pleanála due to a backlog of cases. This is the result of a number of board members resigning because of a series of scandals.

“There are also delays in issuing a foreshore license. This is a license awarded by the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage,” said Deputy Doherty.

Earlier this year, Deputy Doherty raised concerns that this project was at serious risk due to a lack of progress on the project.

He continued, “The people of Lifford and Strabane will suffer as a result. This is doubly unforgivable given as the project was sold as a way of addressing the impact of the conflict and a history of the region being left behind and forgotten about.

“The project, costing nearly €12 million, would have seen 30 acres of park space connected across the river by a foot and cycle bridge.


“We’ve met with both councils involved and a further meeting is planned for next week with the SEUPB EU funding body where we will also reinforce the importance of this project to this area.

“I will be raising these issues with the government and will ask if the government can press the EU Commission for the deadline to be extended.

“However, all indications are that an application will need to be made again for the new round of EU funding; a development that will rightly leave the people of Lifford and Strabane furious.

“Too much hard work, time and effort has already been invested in this project for us to lose it now. Sinn Féin will do everything we can to see this project completed,” said Deputy Doherty.

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