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Connacht Tribune

Your guide to the Galway Races buses and traffic system

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Gardai and the city’s traffic management centre will be monitoring the flow of traffic across Galway during the Races.

A colour-coded route system for traffic management – which includes temporary road closures – will be implemented by Gardaí from this (Monday) afternoon (scroll down for a high quality image of the map).

And the city’s Urban Traffic Management Centre will be watching for ‘pinch-points’ and will consult with Gardai on whether traffic lights need to be switched off.

The ‘blue’, ‘red’ and ‘green’ routes are designed to prevent any cross-flow of traffic making its way to and from Ballybrit, while also leaving the roads open for non-race traffic.

Signage has been erected on the approach roads to indicate the relevant entrances for each colour route. The blue entrance is at Racecourse Avenue, the red represents the tunnel entrance and green the Tuam Road entrance.

There is no access to the Avenue Entrance (Blue route) via the lights at the Briarhill junction (Western Motors/Clayton Hotel), and no access to the Monivea Road eastbound by the lights at the Briarhill junction during road closure times (Monday and Tuesday 3.30pm to 5.40pm; Wednesday 3.30pm to 5.30pm; Thursday 11.30am to 2.30pm and Friday 3.30pm to 5.30pm).

Traffic for Monivea will be directed onto the M6 and can exit at Exit 19 (Glenascaul) and proceed to Carnmore Cross.

All traffic from city reaching the Briarhill junction will be directed towards the Coolough roundabout (entrance to M6).

Traffic reaching the Briarhill junction from all other routes will be directed towards the city.

Click to enlarge map

Click to enlarge map

BLUE ROUTE (Avenue Entrance):

From the Carrowmoneash roundabout (Maldron Hotel) in Oranmore. Take third exit and travel via Carnmore Cross to the Avenue Entrance.

Motorway traffic should take Exit 19 and follow the signage through Carnmore Cross, where traffic from the Monivea Road will join the route. There will be Garda controls in place at the Briarhill junction and at the Avenue Entrance.

Traffic on the N83 (formerly called the N17) should turn up the hill at Killeen Cross (Garda control). No access to the Avenue from the N6 eastbound during road closed times.

RED ROUTE (Tunnel Entrance):

From the Carrowmoneash Roundabout, take the second exit along the N67 (the old N6) to the Martin (Galway Clinic) roundabout. Then take the first exit at the Coolough M6 roundabout (end of the motorway).

At the Briarhill junction (Clayton Hotel/Western Motors), there is no right turn to the Monivea Road or Avenue Entrance. All traffic will be directed to Tunnel entrance and Galway City direction. Race traffic should remain in the right lane, city traffic in the left lane.

From the motorway, race traffic should stay in the right lane and city traffic in the left lane. Gardai will be in place so Race traffic can cross the N6 (dual carriageway) to the course.

There is no access to the Tunnel Entrance from the N83 (the old N17).

GREEN ROUTE (Tuam Road):

Access to the course via the hill at Twomileditch (near Kenny Motors). There is no access from the N6, M6, M18 N67 or R339 roads.

Traffic from the Headford Road can join the Blue Route at the hill at Twomileditch or use the Green Route Entrance there.

Galway City and West:

Traffic from these areas can access any of the entrances. For the Tunnel Entrance, stay in the left lane along Bothar na dTreabh. For the Avenue, there is no access from Bothar na dTreabh during the road closed times. Access will be from the Tuam Road only.

The Green Entrance can be access from the Tuam Road only by turning right at Twomileditch.

Bus services:

Special Bus Éireann Races services will operate every 15 minutes from Eyre Square to the Racecourse from Eyre Square West (The Skeff) on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday starting at 2pm, up until 7pm. Buses will depart from the Raceouse on demand up until 11pm.

On Thursday, Saturday and Sunday, shuttles will depart Eyre Square West from 11am until 4.45pm every 15 minutes or as required, and will return immediately after the Races, up until 9pm. All buses will be directed through the tunnel entrance, dropping customers off within 50 yards of the course.

Tickets are €6/€3 for adults and children one-way and €9/€5 return.

Taxis:

The designated taxi entrance is along the Green Route. A taxi-only lane is located at the top of the Hill allowing taxis to proceed to the ‘B’ entrance. Taxis then exit back along the designated taxi route to the Tuam Road at Kenny Motors.

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Connacht Tribune

Unauthorised developments in County Galway go unchecked for months

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The Planning Enforcement Section of Galway County Council is so understaffed that complaints of unauthorised developments are not being investigated for months, the Connacht Tribune has learned.

In one case, a complaint alleging a house was under construction in a picturesque and environmentally sensitive part of Conamara without planning permission was not investigated by the Council for at least six months.

And it can be revealed that there is a ‘large’ backlog of complaints of unauthorised developments in the county, which the Planning Enforcement Section at County Hall has blamed on staff shortages, according to correspondence obtained by the Connacht Tribune under Freedom of Information (FOI).

In response to repeated requests by a concerned member of the public to intervene and investigate an allegation of unauthorised development in an environmentally protected area of Conamara, the Council’s Planning Department indicated it was too stretched.

“Unfortunately, the planning enforcement section is experiencing a period of prolonged staff shortages and consequently there are a large number of files awaiting investigation/review,” it said.
This is a shortened preview version of this story. To read the rest of the article, see this week’s Connacht Tribune. You can support our journalism by buying a digital edition HERE.

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Connacht Tribune

Access Centre provides pathways to University of Galway for the disadvantaged

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Photo of Imelda Byrne

Great leaps have been made in recent years to make access to tertiary level education a realistic prospect for once marginalised groups in society.

With the deadline for CAO applications approaching next week, the Access Centre at the University of Galway is aiming to reach as many underrepresented groups as possible ahead of next academic term.

Head of the Access Centre, Imelda Byrne (pictured), said research has shown that those who once felt third level ‘wasn’t for them’ are increasing their presence at UG, and bringing a richness to the sector that had for a long time been missing.

In the five years up to 2021, there was a 100% increase in the number of students registering for the Disability Support Service at the university, while those coming from Further Education and Training courses in institutes like GTI had surged by 211% over four years.

“The message that we really need to get out there is that the CAO is not the only route into third level. There are a number of pathways,” says Imelda.

“There are loads of places set aside for students coming from a place of disadvantage,” she continues, whether it’s national schemes such as the Higher Education Access Route (HEAR) for socio-economic disadvantage; or the Disability Access Route to Education (DARE); or the university’s own programme for mature students.

Those places are there to ensure those from all backgrounds get an opportunity to reach their education potential, tapping into hugely talented groups that once may have missed that opportunity.

“What we have seen is that when they get that opportunity, they do just as well if not better than other students,” continues Imelda.

For HEAR and DARE scheme applicants, and for those hoping to begin higher education as a mature student, next Wednesday’s CAO deadline is critically important.

But beyond the CAO applications, the Access Programme will open up in March to guide prospective students, whatever challenges they are facing, into third level.
This is a shortened preview version of this story. To read the rest of the article, see this week’s Connacht Tribune. You can support our journalism by buying a digital edition HERE.

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Connacht Tribune

Galway County Council ‘missing out on millions’ in derelict sites levies

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Photo of Cloonabinnia House

Galway County Council is missing out on millions of euro in untapped revenue due to a failure to compile a complete Derelict Sites Register.

That’s according to Galway East Sinn Féin representative, Louis O’Hara, who this week blasted the news that just three properties across the whole county are currently listed on the register.

As a result, Mr O’Hara said the Derelict Sites Levy was not being utilised effectively as countless crumbling properties remained unregistered – the levy amounts to 7% of the market value of the derelict property annually.

The former general election candidate said Galway County Council was ill-equipped to compile a proper list of derelict sites and called on Government to provide the necessary resources to tackle the scourge of dereliction across.

“There are still only three properties listed on Galway County Council’s Derelict Sites Register . . . anyone in Galway knows that this does not reflect the reality on the ground and more must be done to identify properties, and penalise owners who fail to maintain them,” said Mr O’Hara.

The situation was compounded by the fact that the Council failed to collect any of the levies due to them in 2021.

“This is deeply concerning when we know that dereliction is a blight on our communities. Derelict sites attract rats, anti-social behaviour and dumping, and are an eyesore in many of our local towns and villages.”

“The Derelict Sites Levy should be used as a tool by local authorities to raise revenue that can then be utilised to tackle dereliction, but they are not adequately resourced to identify and pursue these property owners,” said Mr O’Hara.

(Photo: The former Cloonabinnia House Hotel is on the Derelict Sites Register).
This is a shortened preview version of this story. To read the rest of the article, see this week’s Connacht Tribune. You can support our journalism by buying a digital edition HERE.

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