By Eoin Kelleher
CASHEL is set for a major jobs boost later this month when Topaz and McDonald’s jointly open a new 24-hour restaurant and service station next to the M8, creating 82 jobs. The project is the first such joint venture between Ireland’s largest fuel supplier, and the American fast food giant.
As well as providing a much needed shot in the arm for Cashel and the wider South Tipperary economy, the news will be welcomed by motorists frustrated that there are no stops on the motorway between Dublin and Cork.
Due to open on May 18th the new services area is the first of its kind on the M8, with the state of the art complex costing E6 million. McDonald’s has agreed a 25-year deal with Topaz to provide food services on the Cashel site.
The restaurant will have seating for 66 people and there will be parking for up to 40 cars.
With 90% of the McDonald’s jobs being filled by people from the Cashel area the opening of the new service station comes as a real boost to the Premier county. McDonald’s Cashel franchisee Chris Pim is excited about getting the new restaurant up and running, “This is an exciting development for this busy motorway and I expect the restaurant to be really busy from the very start. The Topaz – McDonald’s partnership is one that can be built on for the future and in the immediate term I am delighted to be offering so many jobs in Tipperary and have been overwhelmed by the number of high-quality applicants for our jobs.”
John Atherton, Managing Director of McDonald’s welcomed the Cashel opening and said the new site represented an opportunity to provide quality food at affordable prices on one of the busiest routes in the country. “McDonald’s are delighted to be creating new jobs at the site which will open 24/7 from opening and will serve a wide range of products from breakfast, through old favourites such as the Big Mac to new items such as wraps and coffee.”
Meanwhile, the ESB has also announced that the Topaz service station near Cashel will be among the first in Ireland to provide new fast charge points for electric cars. From May, a tranche of new charge points for electric cars will be be made available in service stations along major inter-urban routes. A total of 30 points are planned at service stations across the country by the end of the year.Cars can charge from zero to 80 per cent of full power in 30 minutes.
Also in Tipperary, it’s been announced this week that Clonmel based company VisionID has signed a major deal with global technology firm Cognex that will allow VisionID to expand its workforce in South Tipperary.
The Clonmel-based company has already added two engineers to its workforce of 16 following the deal, and is hoping to boost its presence even more later this year (Full story pg5).