PLANS by contractors Ward & Burke Ltd to see a further one month closure of the Ring Road in Clonakilty have not gone down well with locals and business owners in Ring and Darrara, who have already endured an eight month closure of the road.
Cork County Council confirmed this week that the contractors have applied for a road closure licence for the Ring Road to start from March 22nd to April 27th to facilitate the erection of flood defences and associated works.
Speaking to The Southern Star, David Jennings of Desert House Caravan & Camping Park said the fact that no one in the area was officially told about the closure extension made the situation even worse.
‘I feel disgusted because the first I heard about it was on social media on Monday and we weren’t officially told anything by either Ward & Burke or the OPW,’ said David.
‘This road has been closed for eight-and-a-half months now and now they are seeking an extension of another month. My business has greatly suffered over the past year as now people have to travel 8km to get to me instead of the 300m from the Faxbridge roundabout.’
David said that residents and business owners affected by the closure need ‘clarity’ on what is happening. ‘We really need clarity from Ward & Burke as we don’t know what’s happening. They now want the road closed during the Easter Holidays which is a busy period for us.’
He added that he has 10 campervans booked in for then and they will have to drive down to Ring to get up to their park.
Frustrated with getting second hard and inaccurate information, Cllr Christopher O’Sullivan (FF) visited the site on Tuesday to seek further clarity on the planned closure extension. ‘We all agree that it’s unacceptable and very frustrating so I spoke to the engineer on site to get more accurate information and find out why there are delays,’ he said. ‘The vertical style stonework, which is part of the spec is causing this delay and the extension is precautionary. Ward & Burke expect the road will open in early April, with road surfacing to begin on March 19th.’
He also got clarification that, despite rumours to the contrary, no staff from Ward & Burke were sent to Bandon to help with works there.
Cllr Paul Hayes (SF) said it was very disappointing that the deadline for the re-opening of the Ring road has not been met, considering the inconvenience that residents and visitors had to put up with over the last eight months.