A COUNCILLOR has called on the County Council not to forget the people who live in town centres and put in place effective traffic calming safe measures at two hot spots in Bandon and Kinsale.
Cllr Gillian Coughlan – who topped the poll in the Bandon Kinsale Municipal District in last May’s local elections – raised the motion at the first meeting of the new term of Bandon Kinsale Municipal District.
Cllr Coughlan quipped that she could have put 30 roads on her motion but the two roads she wanted to highlight are O’Mahony’s Avenue in Bandon and Butcher’s Row in Kinsale.
‘There have been several reports of people parking in O’Mahony Avenue for example at night time and when they come out in the morning they find that their wing mirrors has been blown off or their cars have been damaged in some way by vehicles going up and down the street,’ said Cllr Coughlan.
‘This is a very built-up area as is Convent Hill and we want our towns to be populated. However, we must not forget our old town centres and the people who live there. It’s a big issue for us as a local authority as to how we balance the needs of the outer town developments with the needs of the people in the town centres. People should be able to park their cars outside their homes.’
Cllr Coughlan added she was ‘scandalised’ at the speed of vehicles on Butcher’s Row coming down from Winters Hill when she was out canvassing back in May.
These are just two examples of streets in our town that people live in and we are encouraging people to do so but we need to protect their quality of life, she said.
The main feedback she received while out canvassing was that residents would welcome ramps to slow traffic down and make it safer, she added. ‘We should consider putting ramps in here to slow traffic down and make it safer and while I know there are issues with them that’s what the people we represent want,’ said Cllr Coughlan.
Cllr Kevin Murphy (FG) said the traffic is ‘bombing’ down Butcher’s Row, which is a very narrow road and described the situation as a ‘nightmare’ there.
Senior executive engineer Charlie McCarthy said that as councillors are aware, there have been lots of demands for traffic-calming measures.
‘It’s not feasible or practical to do 50 traffic-calming schemes because when you put in ramps in an area it has a knock-on effect on things like drainage and road markings and the speed ramps have to be standard and not short, sharp ones,’ said Mr McCarthy.
‘Specifically on O’Mahony’s Avenue we did a traffic count at the Deer Park junction there and the average speed is less than 50kph. So, from that point of view it’s not an area that appears to have a major speeding issue. There’s a lot of parking there and people will slow down so it’s self-enforcing, as you have to give way.’