Tuesday, 30 January 2001
Dáil Eireann Debate
963. Mr. Spring asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage Gaeltacht and the Islands when outstanding works (details supplied) will be carried out by the Office of Public Works in order to complete the scheme at the Tralee Ship Canal, County Kerry; the plans her Department has to ensure a future system of maintenance, operation and dredging; and when a marina will be provided at the basin. [1790/01]
Minister for Arts, Heritage, Gaeltacht and the Islands (Miss de Valera): The Tralee Ship Canal restoration project has largely been completed, following the dredging of the main channel, the installation of the swing bridge at Blennerville and the completion of the basin works. As previously indicated, the final phase of the works will include the restoration of the lock gates, the installation of navigational aids and the completion of some minor dredging works. It is expected that these works will be completed this year. The lock chamber has been surveyed with a view to establishing the precise requirements  necessary to undertake the repairs and installation of the lock gates. However, in view of the specialist nature of these works a completion date has not yet been determined.
I wish to advise the Deputy that a meeting was held last year between officials of my Department, the Office of Public Works and Tralee UDC, and it was agreed that the local authority will take over the future maintenance and operation of the Tralee Ship Canal. However, it should be noted that there are no plans to provide a marina facility at the basin under the present proposals.
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