Trying to get the N71 fixed is like ‘Groundhog Day'

May 13th, 2016 11:45 AM

By Kieran O'Mahony

‘The N71 going through Bantry is crumbling and with the extra traffic and tourists coming to the region, it's just not acceptable,' said Cllr Mary Hegarty

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IT’S like ‘Groundhog Day’ trying to get the N71 in Bantry repaired, a local councillor has claimed.

Cllr Mary Hegarty made the comment this week as she highlighted the frustration of both residents and business owners in Bantry with the bad state of the N71 that goes through the town.

Cllr Hegarty (FG) said the response from the TII (formerly the roads authority, the NRA) to Cork County Council following a request for them to attend Council meetings was ‘unacceptable’. ‘It’s like Groundhog Day,’ she told the meeting.

The reply from TII said they are ‘not in a position, nor is it our policy, to send representatives to attend local authority meetings.’

‘I am calling on TII to update councillors on their policy on resurfacing national roads that go through towns in West Cork,’ said Cllr Hegarty. ‘The N71 going through Bantry is crumbling and with the extra traffic and tourists coming to the region, it’s just not acceptable. 

‘They are prioritising the main routes but forgetting about the sections within the town’s speed limits,’ she claimed.

‘We have many issues to speak to them about and it’s only right and fitting that they should send representatives to our development committee meetings. 

We have to get serious about roads and TII need to come and listen to us in relation to policy and future infrastructural issues,’ added Cllr Hegarty.

Cllr Hegarty said it was extremely frustrating for both herself and her constituents who have come to her about the situation in Bantry.

‘There are certain sections of the N71 route that go through towns that are in a very unacceptable state and we need these repaired or resurfaced.

‘If they won’t do anything with the N71 in Bantry then why won’t they take a look at getting a relief road up and running for the town. The recent fatal traffic accident in the town centre only strengthens my argument for something like this to be done,’ she added.

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