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Posted: 01/04/2022

Royal Canal Greenway Visitor Monitoring Project

The Royal Canal Greenway opened in March 2021. The 130km amenity crosses Kildare, Meath, Westmeath, and Longford and is a joint initiative between Waterways Ireland and the local authorities in those areas. It is the longest greenway in Ireland, running from Maynooth, Co Kildare to Cloondra, Co Longford. It cost €12m to deliver.

Tracsis Traffic Data Ltd were appointed by Waterways Ireland during 2021 to firstly validate counts from existing visitor monitoring devices along the route, and then to use a moderated count as the basis for calculating the economic impact of the greenway.

  • The validation research cross referenced visitor data collected by physical counters, to data collected through visual monitoring by field researchers. This indicated 640,000 visitors during the year-long study period.


  • Quantitative data relating to recreational behaviour and consumer spending along the Royal Canal Greenway, was also derived from a robust sample of more than 700 respondents using an online survey.


The research found that the amenity has returned a dividend of €17.2m to the business community in its first year of operation, returning the initial investment in the project in just over eight months. The economic dividend was based on a weighted average visitor spend of €27.


A summary of the project and its key findings can be accessed HERE

Infographics illustrating results of the Online Survey can be accessed HERE

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