|Pile driver at the CAS construction site in Kilkenny City|
There is something rotten in a country that pours concrete over its heritage. That is what we do in Ireland though. We did it to Wood Quay in the early 1980s and to the Tara Valley in 2007-10. Now Kilkenny City is the crosshairs of the concrete fusiliers. Instead of completing the construction of the existing ring road around the city, Kilkenny County Council wants to build a heavy-duty central access road with a large garish bridge right through the city's beautiful medieval heart. It's just another cynical, short-sighted, back-of-the-envelope half-measure that typifies infrastructure planning in Ireland.
|Gardaí clear the site entrance at 4 a.m.|
Despite this setback, the anti-CAS activists are continuing their protest. They held a demonstration at the site again this afternoon and a delegation from the various anti-CAS groups will meet with Kilkenny County Council on Monday. Given the track record of our elected representatives for both ignorance and idiocy, I expect nothing from the councillors but bland platitudes and buzzwords like "progress" and "growth".
Some things are worth fighting for regardless of the final outcome. The anti-CAS campaign is one of them. If Ireland's county councillors had their way, they would probably cover the entire island with motorways, shopping centres, offices, apartment blocks and car parks. It is time we started to preserve what is beautiful about our country instead of destroying and "developing" it. Stopping the central access schemers from cutting through Kilkenny's heart would be the perfect first step.
To help stop the CAS, sign this online petition. For information and updates about the protest, visit the anti-CAS campaign page on Facebook.