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Approval of student complex would create parking ‘havoc’


From this week's Galway City Tribune

From this week's Galway City Tribune

Approval of student complex would create parking ‘havoc’ Approval of student complex would create parking ‘havoc’

Galway City Council should reject plans to increase the size of a planned student accommodation complex in Terryland unless there is an increase in parking spaces, a local election candidate has warned.

Pádraig Lenihan, City Central candidate for the Aontú party, said the proposal for 257 bedrooms on the Coolough Road will cause havoc for local residents.

The Galway City Tribune reported last week that Montane Developments is seeking planning permission to increase the number of bedrooms in the development  for the 2.75-acre site beside Crestwood from 248 (already permitted) to 257, with parking for eight cars.

“The proposal envisages parking for just eight cars, but 370 bicycle spaces. While some may wish we lived in a utopian car-free future when we are all bicycling happily with our hand-woven baskets to a nearby organic food market, in the real world many students have cars. So will the visitors who will rent the units in the summer,” said Mr Lenihan.

He said the Westwood student complex in Dangan had created issues for local residents because of a parking overspill.

The Westwood has 10 permanent parking spaces and uses 14 temporary ones on a basketball court outside the academic year.

“Experience elsewhere suggests car parking will be a problem. Predictably, as residents in Clifton Park and Tudor Lawns noted beforehand, this did not add up and parking now overspills into adjacent housing estates.

“Parking on both sides of roads has impeded access by bin lorries and, on one occasion, an ambulance. Moreover, it is reasonable for residents to expect that visitors to their homes might be able to park their vehicles nearby.

“As things stand, residents have no recourse other than to complain to the manager of the Westwood who, to be fair, has been helpful.

“The problem in Clifton Park and Tudor Lawns is mostly manageable for the moment, with forbearance and neighbourliness,” he said.

Mr Lenihan said he believed the overspill parking in Crestwood “will pose an even worse problem”.

“The City Council should reject the proposed increase, unless parking facilities, to match the number of bedrooms, are included in the plans,” he said.

In 2020, Montane was given planning permission for 248 bedrooms in 37 clusters, as well as a communal laundry, gym/fitness centre and a seminar area, with parking for eight cars.

The company secured an operator for the complex, which then sought  the increase in the number of bedrooms.

Members of the public can make submissions on the new planning application to City Hall up until January 31.

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