Wastewater treatment plant needed in Tullow
A senior official at Carlow County Council has said they are "extremely frustrated" with Irish Water and the pace with which the Tullow wastewater plant upgrade is being delivered.
Dan McInerney, Director of Services for Transportation, Environment and Water Services, was speaking at this month's meeting of Carlow Municipal District in response to comments made by Cllr Will Paton.
Cllr Paton said: "Industrial and housing development is being held to ransom by Irish Water because Tullow doesn't have the wastewater capacity. It's way over capacity.
"We don't need it in 2022, we need it tomorrow morning, I know that's a pipe dream, but it's not fair that a town like Tullow can't develop."
Mr McInerney said: "I myself have met with the asset management team in Irish Water to impress upon them that point.
"We are extremely frustrated at the pace of the scheme and would agree with Cllr Paton."
The meeting heard that the local authority have requested a Tier One meeting with Irish Water to bring the wastewater treatment plant upgrade "to the highest level".
Cllr Paton previously said that Tullow could build 200 houses in the next eighteen months but there's a "fly in the ointment" around the upgrade of the wastewater treatment plant in the area.
He said: "We could build 200 houses in Tullow in the next eighteen months if the wastewater treatment plant was there. There's a fly in the ointment and it's Irish Water."
Speaking after the meeting, Cllr Paton said: "Tullow's Waste Water Treatment Plant has no spare capacity and the Council are not in a position to grant permission for housing in Tullow bar the odd house here and there.
"Certainly housing schemes of 20 or 30 houses would be refused at this stage. Irish Water aims to have a new Waste Water Treatment Plant operation in Tullow in 2022 but the demand for housing is now.
"I have identified a minimum of 180 houses that developers / organisations tell me that they would like to build."
He added: "Essentially the development of Tullow town (the third largest town in Carlow-Kilkenny with a population of 4,673 (2016 Census) is being held to ransom primarily by Irish Water who do not see the urgency of the situation."