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Major road works to begin on Tuesday

Enda Cunningham

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A one-way traffic system on Lough Atalia and College Road – to facilitate road lowering works under the railway bridge – is to be implemented from Tuesday morning.

Galway City Council is advising motorists and commuters to study the map closely, as it is likely to have a major impact on journey times.

A one-way traffic system will operate towards the city on Lough Atalia Road and the Fairgreen Road and outbound on College Road until the end of May. The road under the bridge will be closed for a period of eight weeks, with a finishing date before Whit Weekend.

The traffic changes are part of a €2 million scheme to lower the road under Lough Atalia Bridge by 1.3 metres, because it has been struck by HGVs several times in recent years.

The extent of the road closure is between the Fairgreen Road / Lough Atalia Road Junction and the Lough Atalia Road back gate to Ceannt Station, approximately 60m south of the railway bridge.  There will be no access for pedestrians, cyclists and traffic.

One-way Traffic System

A one-way traffic system will be implemented inbound on Lough Atalia Road, onto Fairgreen Road and outbound along College Road for the duration of the works. This traffic management system will facilitate eastbound and westbound traffic, as well as local access along Lough Atalia Road, Fairgreen Road and College Road.

From Moneenageisha Junction, westbound traffic (for City Centre, Port of Galway, Salthill, etc.) will be required to follow the one-way traffic system along Lough Atalia Road and divert into Fairgreen Road, along Forster Street, Eyre Square, Victoria Place, Queen Street and onto Dock Road, before continuing westbound.

From the Port of Galway / Harbour Hotel, eastbound traffic (for N84, N17 and N6/M6) will be required to follow the signposted diversion routes beginning at Bóthar Na Long, onto Dock Road and divert into New Dock Street and along Merchants Road, Victoria Place, Eyre Square and Prospect Hill.  Eastbound traffic can then continue via Prospect Hill and onto Bohermore, whereas local access to College Road, Lough Atalia Road, Fairgreen Road and Ceannt Station will be required to turn into Bóthar Uí Eithir and turn left along the one-way traffic system along College Road before turning right into Lough Atalia Road at the Loyola Park junction.

Lough Atalia Road

All vehicles exiting premises on Lough Atalia Road will be required to TURN RIGHT at all times whilst the one-way traffic system is in place, and follow the diversions into Fairgreen Road.

College Road (between Forster Street and Loyola Park)

All vehicles exiting properties on College Road, will be required to turn towards Moneenageisha Junction at all times whilst the one-way traffic system is in place, and follow the diversions into Lough Atalia Road / Fairgreen Road.

Forster Street

A clearway will be put in place along Forster Street to ensure traffic flow will move without obstruction from parking / loading vehicles. The bus lane will be opened up to all traffic. A loading area will be made available adjacent to the gate to Saint Patrick’s Church. Loading will not be permitted in any other area along Forster Street. The city wardens will be on hand to keep traffic moving along Forster Street.

Moneenageisha Junction

The traffic signals at Moneenageisha Junction will be reconfigured to improve traffic flows during the road works.  The right turn movements from Moneenageisha Road into College Road and the right turn from Dublin Road into Wellpark Road will be banned.

Lough Atalia Road / Port of Galway Businesses

The Lough Atalia Road / Port of Galway businesses affected by the road closure are open for business as usual and diverted access to these businesses will be available.

Galway City Council has appointed Tom Cannon of Tobin Consulting Engineers as Public Liaison Engineer to the project. He is available to answer any queries about the roadworks from residents, businesses and the general public from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday. and can be contacted on 086 1666653 or by email on lar@tobin.ie

Bus Éireann – City Routes 402, 409 and 410

The above services will now operate inbound via Lough Atalia Road (a temporary bus stop will be located on Lough Atalia Road for the duration of this diversion) and outbound via College Road.

Click here for more detailed maps: LAR – LMK-519-200 to 213

CITY TRIBUNE

Army removes explosive device in Knocknacarra

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An army Bomb Disposal Team was called to Knocknacarra last night to deal with a ‘viable’ explosive device.

Following a request from Gardai, the unit was tasked with investigating a suspicious device in a laneway off Cappagh Road at around 10pm.

The area was cordoned off and following an examination, the device was deemed viable and made safe.

It was removed from the scene shortly after 10.30pm and was taken to a Defence Forces location where it will undergo further examination.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Hospital worker failed to self isolate after trip to red-list country

Francis Farragher

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From this week’s Galway City Tribune – Management at University Hospital Galway have been asked to investigate ‘as a matter of urgency’ an allegation that a security employee at the hospital returned to work within the 14-day restriction period after coming back from a ‘red-list’ country.

The person has already worked at least two shifts at the hospital – including looking after an elderly patient – despite the fact that the restriction period would not have expired until this Sunday, September 20.

The Galway City Tribune can reveal that in a letter from SIPTU official to a senior UHG manager, it is alleged there was breach of protocol over recent days by an employee of an outsourced security company.

According to the letter to Services Manager Geoff Ginnety, while the worker was not covered under HSE employee rules, “they still must comply with the Government issued protocols”.

The letter from SIPTU states that the worker in question had told his colleagues that he was in a red-listed country and that ‘he did not have to restrict his movements’ for 14 days and could return to work.

“I request that you [Services Manager at UHG] address these concerns as a matter of urgency and provide clear guidance on how to deal with the issue,” the SIPTU letter states.

According to information accessed by the Galway City Tribune, the employee in question returned from a red-listed country on September 6 last and underwent a test for Covid-19 five days later on September 11.

Shortly after that, according to his employers, the results of his Covid tests came back as negative. The Galway City Tribune understands that he returned to his night-shift work on Tuesday night, September 15, and also worked the Wednesday night shift of September 16.

This newspaper has also been informed by reliable sources that on his first night back on duty the employee was left in charge of an elderly patient, while on his second night back at work, he was dutied to the Emergency Department.

When contacted by the Galway City Tribune, a spokesperson for the HSE said that they could not comment on issues relating to individual staff.
This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the full details, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Leisureland sinks with €20,000 per week losses

Dara Bradley

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From this week’s Galway City Tribune – The plug is being pulled on Leisureland – leaving hundreds of swimmers, mostly children, and trainee lifeguards, high and dry.

Galway Salthill Fáilte CLG, the company that operates the publicly-owned facility, has confirmed it plans to shut down its swimming pool and gym, leaving members of six aquatic clubs, hundreds of schoolchildren, and the general public, without an amenity for the foreseeable future.

Swimming clubs fear they will lose a whole generation of young swimmers in Galway if the pool closes. And they have warned that it could end up costing €1 million to repair and reopen the pool after a prolonged closure.

Leisureland blamed the impact of coronavirus for its financial woes, with losses running at an average of €20,000 per week.

The company said that by August it had already spent its annual €300,000 subsidy subvention from Galway City Council, and the local authority has indicated it is not in a position to increase the subsidy further in 2020.

The planned closure – which could result in the furloughing of over 20 staff from next month – has shocked the local aquatic community.

A lengthy hiatus with Leisureland closed will mean Galway will lose a ‘whole generation’ of swimmers, according to Eamon Caulfield, President of Galway Swimming Club and member and former chairperson of Corrib Water Polo Club.

“We’re particularly upset and aggrieved that this is going ahead, it’s shocking. They should be looking to reverse this decision,” he said this week.

The majority of the five aquatic clubs that use the facility (Galway SC, Shark SC, Laser SC and Tribes and Corrib water polo clubs) are made up of children aged 10-18, including some international athletes. Hundreds of children from Galway schools also learn to swim there.

A water safety group has been using the pool every Sunday morning since it opened in 1973, he said.

“Historically it is where Galway gets its lifeguards from. How can you not have swim lessons in a public pool? How can you not have water safety taught in a pool in Galway?

“It beggars belief, we’re on the sea. The water safety people, where are they going to go, how are we going to get lifeguards for beaches? How are we going to get teachers for teaching swimming?” asked Mr Caulfield.

The clubs have roughly 150 members each and generate €150,000 revenue annually for Leisureland.
This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the full version, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

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