THE pupils of sixth class at Scoil na Mainistreach, Quin-Dangan, have outlined a highly ambitious vision for the future of their area, focusing on the need for better recreational amenities and road safety.
In a submission the forthcoming County Development Plan for 2022-2028, the school has recommended a number of enhancements and upgrades from which the community of Quin, young and old, would benefit.
The community centre, which is beside Quin’s world-famous abbey, has been earmarked by students as a potential tourism centre, “which not only could give information on the history of Quin and its wonderful structure, but also create employment through guided tours tying in with the famous Wild Atlantic Way”.
Significantly, the 287 boys and girls of Scoil na Ministreach have also spotted the potential for a digital hub at the same location. “This particular site would also be ideal as a digital hub for our village which is centrally located and has the capacity to be the main digital hub for the md-west,” the submission stated.
Road safety emerges as a big concern for the school, as it aims to promote walking and cycling to school, where possible. “The danger arises with speeding vehicles travelling along the village but especially on Newline Road, posing a potential danger to children who are forced onto the road by vehicles parked on the pavement,” the submission stated. “Our cyclists are also in danger by their invisibility to the car driver. Reducing the number of cars parking in Newline Road and introducing cycle lanes through the village would really help diminish the risk of an accident waiting to happen. Also, young children cycling to school have limited room to cycle safely, to quote RSA guidelines for cyclists (‘a little bit of space for a lot for safe’). Cycle lanes throughout Quin Village would be an added welcome to the safety of all of our community.”
Traffic calming measures are also being sought. With almost 400 children attending the school and the two pre-schools in Quin, drop-off and collection times are especially busy.
“If another crossing was situated from the Park Estate onto Newline Road opposite the church, it would give access to Newline Road footpath, keeping all pedestrians safer when travelling to and from school. Also, there is a need to narrow the junction at both sides of the road leading into Newline Road… At the junction between the Park Estate, the church and Newline Road the village either needs Islands or a build out from the footpaths which would help reduce any accidents waiting to happen.”
“Coming into the village we most certainly need traffic calming measures,” the submission adds. “Vehicles travelling from R469 Kilmurry direction, enter the village at a considerable speed. Firstly, these vehicles will travel past the children’s playground. Then they round the corner past Malachy’s Bar before even considering to slow down. As the footpath and boundary walls beside Malachy’s bar are in need of repair on both sides of this junction, this then pushes pedestrians onto the road, posing a concerning hazard. We need to protect our villagers and visitors.”
Increased parking spaces are also called for in the school’s vision for Quin, as well as an upgrade to local recycling facilities. A walkway along the river from Quin Abbey to Ballyhannon Bridge is proposed, as is the development of a library facility at the old Garda station. Road resurfacing and relining are also recommended, as well as the extension of the existing playground and the planting of a forest as an amenity where the community could walk and run.
The submission, which is accompanied by a short video of the sixth class students, concludes by appealing to planners to consider the proposals so that “by 2028, Quin will be changed for the better”.