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No speeding-up of Tuam bypass construction

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The current traffic congestion in Tuam will not still not see any early opening of the bypass of the town ahead of the motorway which is currently under construction.

From early afternoon there are now lengthy tailbacks on the N17 approaching Tuam from the Galway direction and these get progressively worse towards evening.

There have been calls from members of the business community for the Tuam bypass to be fast-tracked ahead for the motorway which is not due to be opened until early 2018.

The tail-backs are now being experienced every evening but they are particularly chronic on Friday evenings when there could be traffic backed up four miles from the town.

But Deputy Sean Canney has been informed by the National Roads Authority – now the Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) – that to open the Tuam bypass earlier than planned would incur additional costs.

A bypass for Tuam was mooted as far back as 2006 but it was put on the ‘long finger’ and then became part of the €550 million Gort to Tuam motorway which is currently under construction.

Deputy Canney has now come up with an alternative suggestion to the traffic woes in Tuam and that this would cost a mere €30,000.

There are three sets of traffic lights within a half mile distance through Tuam with the lights at the Weir Road junction causing the biggest problem for motorists coming from the Galway direction.

The independent TD said that he had investigated a mechanism by which the three sets of lights could be synchronised in such a way that they would allow the free flow of traffic along the N17 through the town.

He said that he has now suggested this to the TII and has pointed out that even when the motorway is provided, the situation with traffic lights through Tuam needs to be addressed.

“It is an absolute disaster at the moment and it is not just the construction of the motorway that is causing the problem. The traffic lights through the town are an absolute disgrace and something needs to be done.

“There are times, even at 3pm of 4pm in the afternoon, there is a tailback coming into Tuam and motorists are getting so frustrated that they are contacting every public representative that they can.

“Irrespective of the motorway being provided in two years time, there needs to be some synchronisation of the lights and I have put a suggestion to the TII and I am awaiting a response,” Deputy Canney added.

The motorway and Tuam bypass are both due to be completed in early 2018 with motorists travelling through the town not looking forward to the traffic nightmare that could continue to exist until then.

Connacht Tribune

Boil water notice issued for Barna area

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A boil water notice has been issued for the Barna area for health protection purposes

The areas affected are Barna Village, Truskey West and Truskey East, Barr Aille, Fermoyle, Ballard and along the Connemara Coast Road as far as Furbo, and on the Barna/Galway Road as far as Silverstrand.

The notice has been put in place due to issues with disinfection of the water at Tonabruckey Reservoir.

The notice affects approximately 2,300 people supplied by the Barna section of the Galway City West Public Water Supply area.

Customers in the area served by Tonabrucky Reservoir will notice increased levels of chlorine in their water supply in the coming days as we work to resolve the issue.

Vulnerable customers who have registered with Irish Water will receive direct communication on this Boil Water Notice.

Irish water, the City Council and the HSE will monitor the supply and will lift the notice when it is safe to do so.

In line with HSE Covid-19 advice and the requirement for frequent hand washing, Irish Water advises that the water remains suitable for this purpose and boiling the water is not required.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Councillors back bid to ban city centre parking in Galway

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From this week’s Galway City Tribune – Councillors have unanimously agreed to ask Transport Minister Eamon Ryan to limit parking to residents only in the city centre.

Pedestrians in the city are being treated like second-class citizens, according to the Mayor, who said cars continued to get the priority on Galway’s streets.

At a meeting of the City Council this week, Mayor Colette Connolly (Ind) said the city had come to a standstill in car traffic, and pedestrians and cyclists were suffering the consequences.

“At junctions, why am I a second-class citizen in my own city as a pedestrian? It rains in Galway for 300 days of the year, but I am a second-class citizen when priority is given to motorists.

“It’s always the pedestrian that waits,” she said, hitting out at the length it took to get a green light to cross at pedestrian crossings.

One way to reduce the number of cars in the city centre would be to limit parking to residents only in the city centre, said the Mayor.

In a motion she proposed, seconded by Cllr Mike Cubbard (Ind), councillors unanimously agreed to write to the Minister for Transport to demand he pass the necessary legislation to enable the Council to do this.

The Mayor said residents were “sick, sore and tired” of people parking where they wanted when they visited the city and said despite a desire to introduce this measure going back almost 20 years, the Council was hamstrung by national legislation that prevented them from proceeding.

This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of the story, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

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CITY TRIBUNE

Planners approve homes for ‘cuckoo fund’ investor

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From this week’s Galway City Tribune – The green light has been given for the construction of 345 apartments at the Crown Square site in Mervue – the majority of which will be put on the rental market and operated by a ‘cuckoo fund’ for a minimum of fifteen years.

Crown Square Developments, which is owned by developer Padraic Rhatigan, has secured permission from An Bord Pleanála for the ‘Build to Rent’ development, with four blocks ranging ranging from four to nine storeys in height.

There will also be a neighbourhood facility with a gym, a primary care medical centre with pharmacy, a ‘working from home’ lounge, six shops, a games room and a creche.

There will be 240 two-bed apartments, 86 one-beds and 19 three-beds, all of which will be specifically for the rental market and not available to purchase.

A breakdown of the apartments shows there will be 240 two-beds; 86 one-beds and 19 three-beds.

To meet social housing requirements, the developer plans to transfer 35 of the apartments (20 two-bed, 10 one-bed and 5 three-bed) to Galway City Council.

A total of 138 car-parking spaces have been allocated on the lower basement levels of Crown Square for residents, along with shared access to another 109 spaces and another 13 for use by a ‘car club’. There will be 796 secure bicycle parking spaces to serve the apartments.

The Board has ordered that the apartments can only be used as long-term rentals, and none can be used for short-term lettings.

Under ‘Build to Rent’ guidelines, the development must be owned and operated by an institutional entity for a minimum period of 15 years and “where no individual residential units shall be sold separately for that period”. The 15-year period starts from the date of occupation of the first residential unit.

This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of the story, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.

 

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