THE cost of building a roundabout on the Tulla Road for residents of Oakleigh Wood, Derrymore and Cappahard has been estimated at around €250,000, with Ennis’ town manager Ger Dollard stating the council cannot spend half its roads budget on one roundabout. However, Mr Dollard said the council are working towards finding a solution to ongoing traffic issues in the area.
One-hundred-and-fifty residents recently presented a petition to Ennis Town Council calling for the roundabout to be constructed saying it is vital to allow residents cope with worsening traffic since the opening of the bypass. According to residents, the roundabout was promised when the estates were first built.
Members of the council and officials met with residents this week to discuss the matter.
At Monday’s meeting of Ennis Town Council, it was outlined that the local authority is to spend €459,200 on its 2013 roadworks programme. When asked about the possibility of a roundabout for Oakleigh Wood, Derrymore and Cappahard, Mr Dollard stated, “There are a number of locations around the town we would like to see roundabouts.” He said a roundabout at Oakleigh Wood was an objective for both Ennis Town Council and Clare County Council and that detailed designs had been prepared. He outlined there are still issues surrounding land acquisition but the “main hurdle” to installing the roundabout is funding.
He stated the roadworks programme for 2013 will see close to €460,000 spent on roads in the town adding, “It is not in anyway possible that half the budget could be allocated to one roundabout”.
Planning files for the estates show that a total of €1.3 million was collected in development levies, with around €200,000 of that going towards road improvements. There was one planning permission with a specific condition of planning seeking €10,000 towards the cost of construction of the roundabout.
Mr Dollard stated that monies contributed have been spent over the years on improvements to the road network including the Tulla Road. He added that residents understand that funding is an issue but that they would like to see the matter progressed. He stated the design will have to be relooked at to see what can be done.
Town engineer Eamon O’Dea added traffic surveys have been carried out for a roundabout at Corrovorrin along with traffic counts at the junctions of Cappahard and Oakleigh Wood.
The non-national roads grant from the Department of Transport of €339,200 towards Ennis Town Council’s roads programme for 2013 is €70,800 lower than in 2012. Also, the town council provides €120,000 from its own resources for the maintenance of roads in the town, which according to Mr O’Dea is “signficiantly lower than funding in 2012 of €175,027”.
In Clare County Council’s grant allocation from the Department of Transport under Low Cost Safety Schemes, funds have been allocated to the Corrovorrin/Tulla Road junction and traffic light replacement at Captain Mac’s Cross on the Clare Road.
Under the 2013 programme, it is proposed the council will construct pedestrian crossings at Ashline and Frances Street. The council also propose to proceed to design and Part 8 planning for pedestrian crossings, subject to evaluation, at Carmody Street Drumbiggle Road; Clare Road at St Flannan’s; Clonroadbeg at Éire Óg; Gort Road at Ashfield Park. The total cost of these works will be €52,000.
Road-surfacing works are proposed to be carried out at Tulla Road (Castle Rock to Fitzpatrick’s) incoming lane (€26,000); overlay works in conjunction with the Lower Fergus Certified Drainage Scheme, Newbridge Road area/Lower Abbey Street (€35,000); section of Golf Links Road (€27,000); Upper O’Connell Street, Barrack Street to Carmody Street (€20,000); O’Connell Street, Square to Thompson’s Lane (€10,000); restoration work at Clare Road, Clonroadbeg, Market Roundabout, Tulla Road/Lifford Road Roundabout, Friars’ Walk (€40,000), restoration work at Childer’s Road, Cloughleigh (€22,000).
Footpath upgrading and construction work are proposed for Golf Links’ Road (€15,000); Lahinch Road (€10,000), The Crescent/Shannon Park (€15,000). The council has also allocated €25,000 for the replacement of pedestrian crossing lights at the Kilrush Road Cross on Carmody Street. Provision is being made for additional pedestrian barriers at Rice College and Holy Family Primary School at an estimated cost of €7,200. Additional funding for upgrading of line marking has been allocated €20,000. The replacement, altering or removal of signs to meet bi-lingual requirements as set out in the Roads Signs Manual and enforced by An Coimisinéir Teanga will cost €15,000. The replacement of road signage in compliance with An Coimisinéir Teanga has been completed in one of the quadrants of the town, Mr O’Dea confirmed at the meeting.
In his report to the council, he outlined the outturn of the 2012 programme, including the completion of the inner Relief Road Section E from Clare Road to Station Road.
“A total of 6,600M2 of road were resurfaced in 2012 including significant works at Lower Parnell Street, Station Road, Coote’s Cross Kilrush Road and Lower Market Street Car Park. Foopath replacement was carried out in the Crescent and Shannon Park and a new section footpath provided at Gaurus. The adjustment to the pedestrian crossing at Kelly’s Corner is being completed from 2012 funds. The replacement of traffic lights at Darcy’s Corner and part of the costs for the replacement of traffic lights at the Kilrush Road Cross were provided. The digital speed limit signs were purchased and will be installed at Cusack Park.”