BIG READ: Councillors updated on Carlow Town Regeneration Project as plans move forward

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Councillors are to be updated on the Carlow Town Regeneration Project at next week's meeting of Carlow Municipal District as the plans move forward and begin to take shape.

Director of Services, Bernie O'Brien, and chief executive of the Local Enterprise Office, Kieran Comerford, have provided a detailed report on the project's status and revealed new initiatives like a Pride of Carlow Schools Project.

On funding the project, they say the Council is awaiting confirmation of funding in respect of Ireland 2040.

A feedback meeting for European Regional Development Funding is arranged for early March.

In order to prepare for the Urban Regeneration Fund process, Carlow County Council has prepared a tender which is evaluated and awaiting completion subject to confirmation of funding. 

Meanwhile, proposals from the report include: "Based on telling the stories of the Carlow Streets and increasing pride by younger people, it is proposed that a Pride Video Project be developed later in 2019."

The Carlow Town Development Forum announced its first project this week - which is a "Pride of Carlow Town Premises Awards" - that will recognise local property owners who maintain a high level of visual appearance to their premises.

Meanwhile, owners of derelict premises are to be requested to place window displays of products in their premises. The Economic Development Officer will engage with owners to progress this project.

A Shop Front Upgrade Scheme will be launched in March 2019 to assist retailers to upgrade their premises to a traditional shop front. This will be a competitive fund with six allocations.

The decision of the final selection will be announced in May 2019 (closing date March 2019). This will be managed in consultation with the Carlow Municipal District Office and the Planning Department.

Meanwhile, a list of suitable plants in the area of local biodiversity will be created, with a view to begin planting in identified areas, including window boxes and hanging baskets in association with Carlow Chamber.

The hanging baskets are funded by Carlow County Council while the area office continues to roll out the pilot Sponsor a Roundabout Scheme.

It is also proposed that the independent family-owned retailers of the town centre would agree to combine marketing efforts to create an effective and mutually beneficial cooperative marketing campaign for Christmas.

This will be explored in May 2019.

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