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Madam’s Hill junction set for yet another design study

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UPGRADE: Mayor Brendan Cronin has been calling for upgrades to the Madam's Hill junction since 1999. Photo: Michelle Crean

 

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“Someone will get killed”

By Sean Moriarty

The notorious Madam’s Hill junction on the Tralee Road is set to be the subject of a Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) ‘traffic simulation software’ exercise in an effort to decide what is the best way to construct a new layout there.

The junction and its subsequent approach into the Cleeney Roundabout on the edge of Killarney has long been the bane of local motorists.

Frequent tailbacks, especially during morning rush hour, contribute to long delays in the area. It is also very difficult to gain access to the Tralee-Killarney road given the large volume of traffic there and this adds to local frustration.

Mayor Cllr Brendan Cronin has been calling for upgrades to the junction since “I was elected to the Council”. Cronin was first elected in 1999. He says someone is going to get killed before any meaningful action is taken at the junction.

At the recent meeting of Kerry County Council he asked: “[Has] any progress been made following my numerous requests of the TII to construct a roundabout to alleviate traffic congestion at the Madams Hill Junction, Killarney".

The Council replied: “Movements through this particular junction are currently being modelled using specialist traffic simulation software" and “This assessment, which will be completed in August, will be forwarded to the TII as part of a Junction Analysis proposal for their consideration”.

Cronin said, assessment or not, he would be accepting nothing more than a new roundabout to solve the long-standing issue.

“The Madams Hill junction is also extremely dangerous which I have been trying to improve since I was elected to the Council,” he told the Killarney Advertiser. “As one of the thousands of roads users that drive Madam’s Hill daily it's blatantly obvious to every driver that a roundabout is needed here, but unfortunately my main concern is that someone will be very badly injured or killed in an accident before the TII listen to us.”

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County Board open to GAA museum proposals

By Sean Moriarty The Kerry County GAA Board said it would operate “an open door policy” for any plans to build a GAA museum in the county. There have been talks at a political level to build such a museum in Kerry with political rivals in Killarney and Tralee both pushing for it to be built […]

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By Sean Moriarty

The Kerry County GAA Board said it would operate “an open door policy” for any plans to build a GAA museum in the county.

There have been talks at a political level to build such a museum in Kerry with political rivals in Killarney and Tralee both pushing for it to be built in their home town.

Before he retired from politics in April, Michael Gleeson was campaigning to build a GAA and cultural museum on the grounds of Fitzgerald Stadium.

His campaign goes back several years before the recession set in, with a €0.5 million bridging loan secured from Croke Park along with funding from Fáilte Ireland. That funding was lost with the onset of the recession before 2010.

Tim Murphy, the outgoing chairman of the Kerry County Board, has confirmed to the Killarney Advertiser that no approaches have been made to the County Board at executive level during his five year stint at the helm.

However, he said the Board would be open to such approaches provided there is sound financial planning behind the project in place.

“The first and most important aspect is the capital funding and my understanding is there needs to be Fáilte Ireland funding in place first,” he told the Killarney Advertiser. “If it gets up and running, there needs to be very clear talks with all stakeholders so everyone knows each others expectations. A museum attracts footfall, but it costs a lot of money to run. We would offer an open door policy to all proposals but funding, first from a capital point of view and then from an operational point of view, will need to be in place.”

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Loreto pupils are happy to help save the planet

By Michelle Crean School pupils are fast becoming the next generation of environmentalists thanks to a brand new litter-picking campaign. Happy to help save the planet one bit of litter at a time are the children from Scoil Bhríde, Loreto NS, who are currently partaking in the Picker Pal Programme. It’s all about taking on […]

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By Michelle Crean

School pupils are fast becoming the next generation of environmentalists thanks to a brand new litter-picking campaign.

Happy to help save the planet one bit of litter at a time are the children from Scoil Bhríde, Loreto NS, who are currently partaking in the Picker Pal Programme.

It’s all about taking on a litter-picking adventure in their local area as well as learning songs, reading storybooks, filling in activity books while witnessing that their real-world actions are making a positive difference and inspiring others to join the movement.

Picker Pals is a unique primary school programme that gives children the tools and motivation to become the next generation of environmentalists, teacher Claire O’Meara explained.

“The Picker Pal Programme is a fantastic initiative and will go a long way to raise awareness of the impact litter has on our environment,” she told the Killarney Advertiser.

Real litter-picking is motivated by a Picker Pack made from upcycled dinghy sails and containing adult and child litter-picking tools, gloves, hi-vis vests and safety information.

“This pack is then taken home by a different pupil every week. That child takes their adult on a litter-picking adventure. The children then tell the story of their litter-picking adventures through art and writing. Raising awareness is an essential part of the solution to littering. Picker Pals gives young people the tools and positive motivation to steward their local environment and make the world a better place.”

The programme, run by environmental NGO VOICE Ireland, is funded by the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications and various local authorities across Ireland.

Now in its third year of operation, over one thousand schools all across Ireland will be taking part in the Picker Pals programme this year. In Kerry, 29 schools are taking part, and Scoil Bhríde, Loreto is delighted to be included, she added.

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