€5m Revamped City Quays Officially Opened in Limerick

Publish Date: Tuesday 25th March 2014

Limerick's status as a Riverside City was confirmed today with the official opening of a €5 million euro revamp of its historic quays.

The City Quays project was officially opened by Minister of State for Tourism and Sport, Michael Ring TD and saw the upgrading of Bishop's, Howley's, and Harvey's Quays as well as Lower Cecil Street, Shannon Street and Lower Mallow Street in Limerick city centre.

The revamp represents a major stage in the City Riverside Improvement Strategy which aims to provide a high quality waterside environment for public use and enjoyment of the River Shannon as well as a unique setting.

The €5m improvement works were constructed over a period of 12 months and included;

  • 850 square metres of boardwalk with deck constructed in tropical hardwood
  • Repairs to the quay wall and retention of its historic features
  • Erection of performance feature with distinctive lighting
  • Interpretation boards, seating, street lighting and new planting
  • Widened footpaths and the provision for closure of Howley's Quay to traffic for future events
  • Traffic calming and fully accessible spaces

The Project Managers were Lawlor Burns and Associates; Nicholas de Jong Associates were the Urban Designers and the Engineers on the project were O'Shea Consulting. The Contractors were L&M Keating Ltd.

Paul Crowe, Director of Services, Travel and Transportation, Limerick City and County Council said the aim of the quays re-development is to provide a high quality city centre waterside environment for public use and enjoyment of the riverside and businesses along it.

“One of Limerick’s issues has been that, in the past, it has turned its back on the Shannonwhich forms the spine of the city,” Mr Crowe said. “Central to the development of this projectwas to turn Limerick back towards the Shannon as many of our key tourism projects such as King John's Castle and the Hunt Museum are located close to its banks. The provision of strategically located walking and cycling facilities along the eastern shore of Limerick’s quay facilitates this but also enables the development of new services and products. The upgrade should also act as a catalyst to increase business and visitors along the quays and into the city centre.”

The works, which cost approximately €5 million euro, were funded by a €3.1m Tourism Infrastructure Grant administered by Failte Ireland with Limerick City and County Council funding the balance.

The revamp of the quays is part of a wider Limerick tourism development which has a number of key pillars including the re-launch of King John’s Castle (€5.7m) and the development of the main visitor thoroughfares in Limerick including Bedford Row, Thomas Street, William Street and the riverside areas.

Speaking at the launch, Mayor of Limerick, Cllr Kathleen Leddin, paid tribute to the contractors, engineers and designers involved in the project pointing out that Limerick owes much of its development down to its location on the banks of the Shannon.
“From the establishment of the first settlement in the King's Island area some 1200 years ago, the River Shannon has always been at the centre of this city's rich and varied history,” she said. “I wish to acknowledge Limerick City and County Council, Failte Ireland and the Department of Transport who have funded this project and ensured its delivery.”

Eoghan Prendergast, CEO Limerick Marketing Company, also welcomed the location of the new development right in the centre of Limerick’s tourism zone.

“Close to the quays along Limerick’s waterfront, are some of our major accommodation providers,” he said. “Public realm works are essential to turn Limerick from a tourism service centre into a tourism destination and this project is a critical part of the overall tourism strategy for the city to link the river Shannon and city centre with King John's Castle and other key attractions in the city's medieval quarter.”

Limerick's City Quays were constructed from the turn of the 1790s onwards and named mostly after the merchants who traded through them. The Quays also played an important role in emigration during the 19th century. The original mooring bollards and bases of cranes that serviced the quay are still visible today along the waterfront.

Last update:25/03/2014