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Council efforts to fix Clarecastle carpark

EFFORTS to make a busy carpark in Clarecastle, which also acts as a through road, safer are underway with the Ennis Municipal District confirming it will commence design works on a footpath scheme. A request for a footpath to be installed adjacent to Deasy’s Village Shop in Clarecastle “in the interest of health and safety of pedestrians” was made by Councillor Paul Murphy during a recent meeting of the local authority.
He urged that a footpath would link the pedestrian crossing with the footpath that currently serves the nearby Daycare Centre.
“This would bring an end to the current situation where pedestrians/customers have to navigate their way down through the centre of the carpark, which also serves as a through road.”
He added that the no parking yellow hatched box area “is currently ignored” and impacts on site lines for drivers that are exiting the carpark.
Councillor Murphy said the issue was highlighted to him a number of times during public consultation on the Section 38 traffic calming proposals for Church Drive/Old Road, Clarecastle.
“The carpark is between the shop and Abbey Hall and there is a throughroad, there are cars, vans and lorries and customers for the shop and there is no footpath between the shop and the daycare. It’s dangerous. Cars are reversing and there are people walking out, it’s a health and safety issue,” he said.
Paddy Tiernan, acting senior executive engineer, commented that the matter had
been brought to the attention of Ennis Municipal District during a recent Section 38 public consultation within Clarecastle.
“We would see the merit of installing a footpath at this location and as such we will commence works on designing a suitable scheme. We also note that some motorists are ignoring the no parking zone and this is creating a safety hazard for motorists exiting and approaching the car park. We will investigate suitable measures to address this issue and these measures may include the installation of flexible bollards or low-level planting boxes.
“Prior to the implementation of any measures we will also liaise with the business owner of the nearby shop. It is envisaged the entire scheme would fit the criteria for an application to the Department of Transport under a Safety Improvement Scheme.”
Councillor Murphy welcomed plans for the design. He said people parking their vehicles in the ‘no parking’ yellow hatch box had become “a major issue”. “Cars, vans, you name it park on that and it obscures the view”. He agreed that planters may be a solution. He said the shop owner is in favour of improvements being carried out, and asked for an estimated projected cost.
Councillor Tom O’Callaghan commented, “This is very much needed and would be very welcomed by the people of Clarecastle”.
Mayor of Ennis Councillor Pat Daly agreed, “It is a very, very busy area where there are so many things happening there and a footpath would alleviate alot of that.”
Mr Tiernan stated it is a “pretty small scheme that would be an easy enough one to to do with not much digging,” with the expected cost in the region of €10,000 to €12,000. He said funding is not available at the moment but there are various funding schemes that would be worthwhile applying for in the future. Councillor Murphy stated his belief there is some GMA funding available suggesting this be used to get the project done, Councillor Tom O’Callaghan said he had “no problem” seconding this proposal.

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