Killarney council votes against relief road project

A local authority has bowed to pressure from residents opposed to a new roadway aimed at relieving traffic congestion in Killarney.

Senior council management in Killarney along with the National Roads Authority and the gardaí were in favour of a new roadway on the Cork side of the Kerry tourist town.

They believed the road would improve traffic flow and road safety in Killarney.

However, the council voted five-three against the road project at Monday night’s meeting, which was attended by upwards of 40 objecting residents from the Pinewood, Chestnut Drive and The Park areas.

The 350-metre road would have run from the Michael D O’Shea roundabout on the northern bypass to Killarney’s biggest shopping area at Deerpark.

Residents claimed the roadway would have led to huge increases in traffic, would create safety hazards, interfere with privacy, cause noise pollution and risk damage to property.

But town manager John Breen pointed to serious traffic problems that needed to be tackled.

“There’s no other viable alternative option at this time. You must also consider the common good. There’s a major traffic issue here,” he said.

But mayor Sean Counihan claimed the new road would not provide a long-term solution and said he feared it could become a circuit for “boy racers”.

A vote was taken following lengthy consideration. Against were: Cllrs Sean O’Grady and Sean Counihan, Labour; Tom Doherty and John O’Donoghue, both FF, and Niall O’Callaghan, Independent. In support were: Cllrs Donal Grady and Hugh Courtney, both Independents, and Cathal Walshe, FG.

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