Kerry ‘without clout’ amid bypass Ballyvourney impasse

A joint approach from politicians in Cork and Kerry has been urged to progress a bypass route on the main road linking the counties.

With no minister based in Kerry, a county council meeting in Tralee yesterday heard a call for the intervention of Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin in the saga over the Macroom- Ballyvourney bypass.

Kerry was “without clout”, the meeting was told.

Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) officials told a Cork County Council delegation last week that while the Macroom road was in the Capital Investment Plan (2016-21), funding had not been allocated.

Mayor of Killarney Brendan Cronin, an Independent, said: “It is quite clear that we, as a county, have no clout; we have no ministers, we have no say at the cabinet table. The only option is to join colleagues across the border in Cork.”

Tralee’s Labour mayor Terry O’Brien referred to the lack of a bypass at Adare and said Kerry was “blocked” at both main approaches.

Independent Killarney councillor Donal Grady appealed to Mr Martin to intervene and ensure the bypass went ahead. “Fianna Fail are in government as much as Fine Gael,” he claimed.

Independent councillor Michael Cahill said the campaign for the Macroom bypass had been going on for a quarter of a century.

“The line of attack should be a joint venture between Cork County Council and ourselves,” he said.

In a reference to Fine Gael TD Brendan Griffin, who campaigned on the bypass, Mr Gleeson said: “A few months ago, pre-election, the side of the N22 was littered with posters saying the Macroom bypass was imminent.

“The posters have gone, the election has gone, and only the hypocrisy persists. There is more to politics than deposing party leaders.”

Meanwhile, in a letter to Kerry County Council chief executive Moira Murrell, TII regional manager Paul Moran said the N22 road scheme was still included in the Capital Investment Plan and “we anticipate this will facilitate commencement of construction of the scheme in 2020”.


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