No quick solution to fixing Crossbarry’s blocked sewers but report is due soon

June 2nd, 2023 7:15 PM

By Southern Star Team

A final report on the issue is expected shortly. (Photo: Shutterstock)

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RESIDENTS in Crossbarry have been dealing with blocked sewers and foul smells for more than 10 years due to a malfunctioning wastewater treatment plant.

That’s the claim of Cork North-West TD Aindrias Moynihan who called for the Cluain na Croise treatment plant to be repaired without delay.

‘For well over 10 years, the wastewater treatment plant in Cluain na Croise in Crossbarry has been malfunctioning and it is causing huge difficulty for locals. It’s disgraceful,’ he said in the Dáil.

‘As far back as 2016, the plant was one of only half a dozen that the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications was advancing through a pilot scheme to resolve defective developer-led infrastructure. 

‘Unfortunately, Crossbarry was the only village in the original pilot scheme that did not advance to construction.’

He added that it is a serious concern for locals who have found it ‘very frustrating’ that other, smaller plants have been repaired ahead of Cluain na Croise.

‘It has been very difficult for residents who have put up with blocked sewers, foul smells and overflows that the Council has to repeatedly clean up. It is very unfair on locals. This needs to be resolved,’ he said.

Minister of State at the Department of Housing Malcolm Noonan, in response, said a small number of housing estates nationally rely on developer-provided water services infrastructure, commonly referred to as DPI, for their water services.

‘At present, Crossbarry does not have a public collection and central wastewater treatment system. Instead, wastewater from the four housing estates in the village is collected and treated by means of a separate DPI. 

‘The solution to the DPI issues in Crossbarry is complex in nature, and the options were fully considered by an independent expert panel. 

‘The most appropriate resolution is a standalone treatment system that will also benefit the village,’ the junion minister said. 

He told Deputy Moynihan that the Department has engaged with Uisce Éireann and Cork County Council in developing a solution including certainty around the cost that will fully resolve the DPI issues in Crossbarry.’

The Minister expects to receive a final report from the panel shortly, he said.

‘He will then be in a position to make an announcement on funding allocations for locations, including Crossbarry,’ Deputy Noonan added.

‘It is important to state that Uisce Éireann must be fully on board with any proposed solutions when it comes to DPI because it has responsibility to operate and maintain any new infrastructure when projects are completed.’

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