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Long road ahead for Shannon flood plan

FLOOD relief for Shannon Town has “a long road” to go before completion, the monthly meeting of Clare County Council has been told.
Following a question from Councillor Gerry Flynn, the CEO of the authority said the issue will addressed, but will require “a variety of interventions”.
Commenting on the monthly update on the Shannon Town & Environs Flood Relief Scheme, the Independent member said progress with the works was a matter of concern.
“I have been receiving a lot of calls from concerned residents over the flood relief scheme. It seems like a long time since we met the minister on this. Meanwhile, Shannon Airport are pushing ahead with their efforts. The town is still vulnerable and some residents cannot get insurance against flooding.
“When will we see work on the embankments of the town? I’m calling on the CEO to progress this because it seems to me that the time-frame is slipping and sliding.”
Responding, Pat Dowling said the council is dealing on an ongoing basis with the Office of Public Works (OPW).
“This is a significant technical project and a large capital scheme,” he said.
“It will happen, I can assure you of that, and everybody in Shannon. There is no one, simple solution. A variety of interventions are needed.”
Senior Engineer Seán Lenihan said that in respect of the Shannon Town works, “there is a long road yet in front of us”.
He told the meeting that Shannon Airport is repairing and upgrading existing embankments.
“This will in no way interfere with future works and the work for the town is ongoing,” he said.
“A lot has to be done before you can bring in the machines. We are not ready to go to tender or to planning permission.”
Mr Lenihan told Councillor Flynn that he would be happy to bring the consultants working on the project to a meeting of the Shannon Municipal District committee.
“We need to know what’s going on,” Councillor Flynn said. “We would welcome a meeting with the consultants.”
Mr Dowling agreed that the consultants will attend the meeting.
“The government have committed to the funding,” the CEO added.

About Fiona McGarry

Fiona McGarry joined The Clare Champion as a reporter after a four-year stint as producer of Morning Focus on Clare FM. Prior to that she worked for various radio, print and online titles, including Newstalk, Maximum Media and The Tuam Herald. Fiona’s media career began in her native Mayo when she joined Midwest Radio. She is the maker of a number of radio documentaries, funded by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI). She has also availed of the Simon Cumbers Media Fund to report on development issues supported by Irish Aid in Haiti. She won a Justice Media Award for a short radio series on the work of Bedford Row Project, which supports prisoners and families in the Mid-West. Fiona also teaches on the Journalism programmes at NUI Galway. If you have a story and would like to get in touch with Fiona you can email her at fmcgarry@clarechampion.ie or telephone 065 6864146.

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