Hotel federation says Killarney’s tourism future is too important to leave to chance

Killarney House and Gardens, Killarney National Park. Photo:Valerie O’Sullivan

Killarney’s tourism future is too important to leave to chance.

That’s the message relayed to members of the Killarney Municipal District meeting today when they received a deputation from the Irish Hotels Federation and the Killarney Chamber of Tourism and Commerce.

This morning’s meeting heard that tourism is the economic lifeblood of not just Killarney but the entire South-West region.

It’s claimed tourism in Killarney sustains over 3,000 jobs directly and over 7,000 in the wider economy.

Paul O’Neill from the town’s Chamber of Tourism and Commerce says there’s huge potential for growth, however, the issue of traffic congestion needs to be tackled as a measure of urgency.

Niamh O’Shea, Chairperson of Kerry IHF, says there’s an impression that Killarney is full due to traffic congestion; she has called for a commitment from the members to address traffic congestion.

All councillors present supported the deputation’s call for an outer ring road, additional car parking, and clarification on which projects would be completed this year.

Councillor Niall Kelleher, who brought the deputation, says over €800,000 was collected in rates in the town over the past two years alone, and he says there’s enough money to tackle the congestion.

He adds, through tourism, Killarney has the golden goose, however, it’s currently being choked.

In response, MD manager Angela McAllen says traffic management and parking are key issues and the council is working hard to increase parking capacity in Killarney.