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Councillors demand clarity on multi-million road funding

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By Sean Moriarty

Elected councillors in the Killarney Municipal District are to seek clarity on road funding that was announced by Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan just before Christmas.

CLARITY: Cllr Brendan Cronin has been campaigning for improvement works at Madams Hill for years

IMMEDIATE: Cllr John O’Donoghue stated that the work needs to get underway on all projects as soon as possible.

MOTION: Mayor Marie Moloney will seek clarity on the funding at the next Killarney Municipal District meeting

Some of the most eagerly awaited road projects in Killarney have been included in a multi-million Euro in  national road funding allocations totalling €676 million to local authorities for 2022.

The biggest local project is the Park Road to Ballyspillane roundabout which is in line for €1.2 million.

The next phase of the new road between Farranfore and Killarney will get €800,000.

The much anticipated and badly needed realignment of the Lewis Road Junction will get €30,000.

Several other very important road schemes are also in line for funding.

These include, Agahdoe (€30,000); Torc to Muckross (€10,000); Fossa (€10,000); Torc to Dinis (€50,000); MuckrossRoad (€10,000) and Rathmore (€10,000).

CLARITY

“I very much welcome this funding, in particular for the junction of Lewis Road and Aghadoe that I have been pursuing for some time,” Cllr Marie Moloney told the Killarney Advertiser.
“I do however have concerns that the amounts allocated may not be enough to carry out all the works that need to be done at these junctions as major works needs to be carried out. I have tabled a Notice of Motion for the January meeting asking that clear details be given on the works that are planned. We are still not clear as to whether or not a roundabout will be provided at the Aghadoe junction which I believe is the only answer to the problems people coming down from Aghadoe are experiencing.”

Cllr Brendan Cronin has raised similar concerns.
"I want to welcome the broad funding announcement by the TII and in particularly involving the Killarney MD where very dangerous junctions at Lewis road and Madams Hill have been allocated substantial funding and need urgent improvements immediately,” he said. “The TII have not yet publicly clarified their proposals for Madams Hill junction but have committed to implementing a left only exit from Lewis road onto the bypass to reduce accidents, which I first requested over five years ago. The allocation for Killalee, and Park Rd to Ballyspillane along with a number of other projects are also very welcome. The identifying of the preferred route from Farranfore to Killarney by the TII next year will be of major importance due to the implications for landowners and home owners along this route. The failure to make any attempt to replace the single lane Listry bridge is again very disappointing."

TOWN CENTRE

Cllr Niall O’Callaghan, acknowledged that all of the elected councillors in the Killarney District are working towards to the common good of the town, but warned that despite the funding announcement not enough is being done to alleviate town centre traffic issues.

He said: “Everyone knows the poor condition of some of the roads in Kerry and any funding that can progress projects is vital for the connectivity of our county both internally and nationally. The access to Cork will improve with the new road progressing well, the connectivity with Limerick is a route that needs to be further progressed. Within the Killarney MD, it is vital that traffic flow into and in the town itself is made a priority. People need to be able to get about the town and do their business without the worry of traffic jams. It is nice to see all councillors working to this goal.”

Cllr John O’Donoghue, who took over from Michael Gleeson last year, also welcomed the funding, particularly for the project first earmarked by his predecessor but stated that the work needs to get underway on all projects as soon as possible.

“I strongly welcome the funding announced which will hopefully ensure projects currently on the long finger will be completed in the not too distant future,” he said.

“I also await developments regarding the proposed new bypass from Farranfore to Killarney with interest and it is imperative that the relevant stakeholders work closely with those domiciled within the area to ensure it causes as little disruption as possible.

“Within the immediate area of Killarney Municipal District, I am delighted to see funding announced for Lewis Road, Fossa, Muckross Road, Garries Bridge, Park Road, Ballyspillane, the junction in Aghadoe and Rathmore amongst others as these are all extremely worthwhile projects which badly need to reach completion as quickly as possible.

“I am also very pleased to see funding announced for a project which was very first proposed by my predecessor Michael Gleeson, and has since been followed on up by myself, that is the cycle way cum walkway from Dinis to Torc and then hopefully from Torc to Muckross. Completion of this work will link it up with the new walkway from Tomies and will be a magnificent addition to an already splendid area.”

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Future Kerry railway plans revealed

By Sean Moriarty Elected members of Kerry County Council have led calls for Iarnród Éireann’s timetable to fall into line with airline schedule at Kerry Airport. On Monday of this week Barry Kenny of Iarnród Éireann gave a presentation to elected members of the council. During the meeting he outlined some of the railway company’s plans […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Elected members of Kerry County Council have led calls for Iarnród Éireann’s timetable to fall into line with airline schedule at Kerry Airport.

On Monday of this week Barry Kenny of Iarnród Éireann gave a presentation to elected members of the council.

During the meeting he outlined some of the railway company’s plans and ambitions from now until 2027.

These include an increase in frequency on the Tralee to Mallow line.

It is hoped to have one train an hour operating on the line at peak times and two-hourly off-peak.

In a perfect world, the rail station at Farranfore would be placed across the road from the airport and not a 1km walk away but such a move is not likely to happen.

Cllr Norma Moriarty, of the Kenmare Municipal District explained how she was on trip to Yorkshire a few years ago.

“I flew from Kerry to Manchester and was able to get a connecting train to Yorkshire without ever leaving the airport building,” she said. “The people I was visiting were very surprised to hear me talk about this so much – it is normal to them.”

Under the Strategy 2027 plan Killarney rail station will get repainted and new signs will be put in place during 2022.

Additional parking spaces will be created at Farranfore Railway station and this lead to calls for a similar expansion at Rathmore.

“A lot of people from South Kerry use Rathmore railway station,” said local councillor Niall Kelleher. “They drive up from Kenmare and cut across by Glenflesk.”

Mr Kenny said he would take the Rathmore comments back to the Iarnród Éireann engineer in charge of parking strategy.

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Walking and cycling projects set for upgrade 

Commuters and nature enthusiasts will benefit from €4.13m in funding allocated to Kerry County Council for walking and cycling projects. €350,000 has been allocated for Transport/Mobility Plans for Killarney, Tralee and Listowel. Locally €704,835 is being given towards an interconnected network of cycleways on Rock Road, while there’s €70,000 funding for the Deerpark Road/Gealscoil Junction to include […]

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Commuters and nature enthusiasts will benefit from €4.13m in funding allocated to Kerry County Council for walking and cycling projects.

€350,000 has been allocated for Transport/Mobility Plans for Killarney, Tralee and Listowel.

Locally €704,835 is being given towards an interconnected network of cycleways on Rock Road, while there’s €70,000 funding for the Deerpark Road/Gealscoil Junction to include an interconnected network of cycleways. €300,000 is planned for an interconnected network of cycleways for the Gaelscoil Road/Chestnut Drive area, while The Flesk Walkway and Cycleway, Killarney is to get €123,866, as well as a further €186,527 for Rock Road.

Deputy Government Chief Whip, Brendan Griffin TD has said the funding from the National Transport Authority (NTA) will deliver high quality upgrades to walking and cycling infrastructure, with sustainable transport modes vital as the county emerges from the pandemic.

“I am pleased that Kerry County Council has been awarded funding which is part of an overall total of €289 million for approximately 1,200 Active Travel projects across the country,” Deputy Griffin said.

“Ensuring we have a good and efficient transport system in Kerry is essential for the future as we aim to make our communities and town centres more vibrant, in addition to making commuting to work and school safer and easier. Over the past two years we have spent more time enjoying our outdoor amenities and investing in active travel will also help us to meet our climate change obligations.”

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