CO CLARE has been “tarnished” by the absence of toilet facilities on the M18.

Forming part of the Atlantic Corridor, the M18 was originally called for under the Transport 21 project, an Irish infrastructure plan, announced in November 2005 with the aim to expand the country’s transport network and had an estimated cost of €34bn attached to it at the time.

Former Mayor of Clare, Cllr PJ Ryan (IND) appealed to Clare County Council to request the Minister for Transport, Eamon Ryan (GP) and Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) to “provide toilets and parking facilities on the N18/M18 in the Clare section”.

Speaking at a recent meeting of the local authority, Cllr Ryan said “quite a lot of vehicles are pulling up and drivers are using the side of the road as a toilet”. He stated, “making a public toilet out of the M18 is a disgrace, they are passing through three counties and there are no toilet facilities” and added, “it is tarnishing our county”.

He was also adamant of the need to offer parking facilities for commercial vehicles and buses along the motorway. “Lorries are parked all around the tourist area in Bunratty and we cannot tolerate this. Shannon Airport is an industrial area, there are quite a lot of lorries coming in late at night”. Cratloe’s Ryan recalled that an area adjacent to the Inn at Dromoland was mooted to provide parking and toilet facilities by the motorway but nothing materialised.

According to Cllr Pat McMahon (FF), progress didn’t occur because “the Government didn’t allow it to go further”. Cllr Donna McGettigan (SF) flagged, “You will find that a lot of people stepping out on the side of the road are male, us females have to hold on which can cause its own health issues”.

That signs exist to remind motorists that places are “working areas and not toilets” was “disgraceful” in the eyes of Cllr Ann Norton (IND). “I really believe there should be better facilities in our own country. TII need to look at other countries and see what is available. We have to remember that tiredness kills people on our roads, if it’s only a laydown area then they should be available”.

Ryan’s successor as the county’s first citizen, Cllr Tony O’Brien (FF) confirmed that TII would be contacted on foot of the motion.

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Subscribe for just €3 per month

If you’re here, you care about County Clare. So do we. Did you rely on us for Covid-19 updates, follow our election coverage, or visit The Clare Echo every week for breaking news and sport? The Clare Echo invests in local journalism and we want to safeguard its future in our county. By becoming a subscriber you are supporting what we do, will receive access to all our premium articles and a better experience, while helping us improve our offering to you. Subscribe to clareecho.ie and get the first six months for just €3 a month (less than 75c per week), and thereafter €8 per month. Cancel anytime, limited time offer. T&Cs Apply. www.clareecho.ie.

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