The Deise Greenway, or Waterford Greenway, offers a 46 Kilometre off road cycle path starting from the heart of Dungarven to the quays of Waterford city. The Greenway was built up several sections spanning over a course of 4 years. The first stretch, starting from Dungarven to Ballinroad, opened in 2013, then extended to Kilmacthomas in September 2016, and finally Waterford City in March 2017.
Conveniently, you don’t need to bring your own bike to cycle the greenway, companies like Waterford Greenway Bike Hire offer a shuttle service from Waterford, Dungarven and Kilmacthomas if you’re intending on doing just a one way trip to cover the greenway fully or partially. For public transport, route 40 can take you to any of the three aforementioned places.
Kilmacthomas is a good halfway point to stop off for a break and refreshments, it feels like it’s the highest point of the greenway with either direction going mostly downhill. In my experience, the Dungarven to Kilmacthomas section had more traffic than the Kilmacthomas to Waterford section, I would guess that this is due to features such as the Durrow viaduct, Ballyvoyle Tunnel and the panoramic view of Dungarven having wider coverage on social media and news outlets than the second half of the line.
There is still plenty to see in the direction of Waterford however, the Kilmeaden section features a heritage railway, between Kilmeaden and Mount Congreve is a great view of the Suir river and following on shortly is the Mount Congreve Gardens. Before approaching Waterford there is also an entrance to the WIT West Campus, this is connected to the cyclepath on the Outer Ring Road and potentially to Tramore ( although this route would have you cycling in close proximity to motor traffic which may be less ideal).
The Waterford Greenway officially ends at Water’s Gate but the council has added a cycle path that takes you as far as Gratten Quay, afterwards you’re left with traversing on a footpath. It would be great to see the cycle path extended deeper into City Centre, in particular John Roberts Square which would offer a great way to finish (or start) the experience.
The Future of the Waterford Greenway
As of time of writing (27/4/19), there are two projects in the works that are worth keeping an eye on, The Waterford North Quays project which includes the construction of a pedestrian bridge connecting the North and South quays and the New Ross to Waterford Greenway that the Kilkenny County Council are seeking to develop. The latter project already has a proposed route:
The Kilkenny County Council have also provided an ambitious timeline for this new greenway:
|Q2 to Q4 2019||Detailed design|
|Q4 2019||Tendering stage|
|Q2 2020 to Q2 2021||Construction stage|
Combined, these projects could potentially extend the Waterford Greenway by 25 kilometres, taking it a little bit closer to Dublin. So why stop there?