Talbot's Court and Talbot's Gate residents are concerned about road safety if traffic volumes increase
A proposed new road in Kilkenny city is causing concerns among local residents.
People living in Talbot’s Court and Talbot’s Gate are worried that the proposed Loughmacask link road will bring traffic congestion and road safety issues to their front doors, and possibly block speedy access to local hospitals at very busy times.
The proposed road will link the Freshford Road, from near St Luke’s Hospital, to a new secondary school that will be built on the Dunningstown Road.
While the residents warmly welcome the new school, they are calling on Kilkenny County Council to find a safer, alternative route to what is proposed.
Spokesperson for the Talbot’s Court residents, Brian Buggy, said they fear “we are effectively going to be locked into our estate” by the huge, new volume of traffic.
Up to 1,000 students and 150 school staff are predicted to use the link road every day.
Residents are also unhappy that 84 mature trees will have to be cut down to widen the current road, to make way for a cycle lane.
“We are here 16 years — the trees on the avenue are older than our children,” Brian said.
The link road will put a disproportionate burden on the residents in this area, he added.
Brian said a traffic impact assessment was carried out but it was during lockdown, when the schools were not open, and traffic on the roads was at a minimum. He says the survey is no reflection on traffic in the area during peak school times and recommends that it be completed again once restrictions are lifted.
“An Bord Pleanala stated that the central access schemes need to be completed prior to any development in this area. This report also highlighted congestion issues in the area and stated that in 2014 at school times this area was at capacity for traffic congestion. That is eight years ago and the situation is only getting worse.”
Raising broader concerns, Brian said residents have concerns if a major emergency occurs at school traffic times ambulances would not be able to access St Luke’s hospital in a timely manner.
Brian said ‘the residents in the area feel that we have not been listened to’.
Kilkenny County Council is expected to make a decision on the road next week.
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