Group opposing new Cork motorway says there are 'strong grounds' for judicial review

The planned M28 route from Cork city to Ringaskiddy. Source: Cork National Roads Office:

A group opposing plans to upgrade the M28 Ringaskiddy to Cork motorway have said there are "strong grounds" for seeking a judicial review.

Cork residents gathered in large numbers last night to attend a meeting organised by the M28 steering group which is urging authorities to consider alternative plans to the roadworks.

Locals from Douglas, Rochestown and Maryborough Hill voiced their anger and disappointment about the recent approval by An Bord Pleanála of the plans which some objectors say will split communities in two.

The steering group represents more than 10,000 residents who will be affected by the motorway and has 45 members, including residents associations and county councillors.

The major €220m motorway project was approved earlier this month.

More than 140 hectares of land from 82 landowners will need to be acquired for the motorway through Compulsory Purchase Orders.

Steering group Chairman Gerard Harrington explained to the meeting that preliminary legal advice pointed towards strong grounds for seeking a judicial review.

According to Mr Harrington, these included a lack of notice and consultation, failure to comply with relevant EU directives, and project-splitting.

He made it clear that the group’s full legal strategy could not be set out at this stage but he did express confidence in the advice that had been given to the group.

Some concerns raised by residents included the impact of the plans on property prices, pollution, noise and "the future well-being" of families.

“This is not about money, it is about our health and that of our children," said one attendee.

Local representatives Senator Jerry Buttimer and Councillor Marcia Dalton spoke about the importance of following the process so that the aims of many local people could be achieved.

The group stated that funding a legal case was an investment, as one contributor said: “Money given for this

struggle is not a donation but an investment in our future”.

Earlier yesterday, a meeting attended by Tanaiste Simon Coveney was held at Cork Chamber to discuss future investment, including the M28 plans.

Digital Desk

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