Located in the province of Leinster, Westmeath is bounded by Co. Cavan to the North, by Co. Meath to the east, by Co. Offaly to the south and by Co's Roscommon and Longford to the west. The County is 53kms long from East to West and 43kms broad and contains 101,152 hectares. Renowned as the Lakeland region of Ireland, it contains some delightful scenery chiefly in the centre of the County where a number of lakes with wooded shores and surrounding hills provide charming views. The Rivers Shannon, Inny and Brosna flow through the County.
The County is traversed by six major routes, M4 (N4), N6, N51, N52, N55 and the N62. Mullingar is located on the M4 National Primary Route, the main artery between Dublin and Sligo. Athlone is located on the N6 which is the main road connecting Dublin to Galway.
Westmeath is served very well by rail and bus links. High speed trains link Mullingar to Dublin with up to eight services daily and Athlone is situated on the Dublin - Galway rail line which provides a regular service to and from the capital.
With a population of 79,346 (Census 2006), Westmeath has experienced a growth rate of over 10% since 2002, an indication of the fact that the county represents an excellent location to live and do business in. This growth now places Westmeath as the largest county in the Midlands region, with almost one third of the regional population and accounts for just under 2% of the state population. The two largest towns, Mullingar and Athlone have experienced growth of 18% and 23% respectively, with populations now at 18,529 in Mullingar and 17,544 in Athlone.
The towns of Athlone /Tullamore /Mullingar have been selected for linked gateway status in the National Spatial Strategy. The framework chosen for delivering the regional growth strategy is the five-town model using complementary strengths of the strategic gateway towns of Athlone and Mullingar in County Westmeath along with Tullamore in Co Offaly, together with principal towns of Longford and Portlaoise to form a well constructed urban system in the region for attracting investment to support and sustain economic growth.
Doing Business in County Westmeath
Westmeath represents the ideal location in which to operate a business. It has been the chosen location of many international businesses such as Elan Corporation, Ericssons, Oakley and international call centres including Capmark and ICT Europe. In addition to these international companies, many national companies have chosen Westmeath as their preferred location, which allows them easy access to the main ports and airports so they can serve international markets with ease.
For those not familiar with the county, Westmeath can offer:
- Readily available serviced lands, sites, office and factory space at competitive rates
- Excellent road and rail infrastructure
- Up to date high speed MAN networks and broadband access
- Capacity within essential services including, energy supplies, water and waste disposal systems
- Professional support and information from Business Advisors and Enterprise Support Agencies
- Vibrant Professional Services comprising of Accounting, Legal, Recruitment, Marketing, Banking, Architecture, Engineering and I.T. Support.
- Highly educated local work-force
- Affordable housing