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A SYMBOL to represent Shannon’s history of aviation at one of the town’s main axis points could promote the local International Airport while also enhancing the area.

Visitors to Shannon are left with a poor impression of the area thanks to the Shannon Town Roundabout, Cllr Gerry Flynn (IND) flagged at this week’s sitting of the Shannon Municipal District.

Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) have been requested to enhance the roundabout which links the M18 with Shannon, the Airport, Industrial Estate, town centre and Rineanna. “The current landscaping on the roundabout is causing considerable difficulties for road safety as it is overgrown and an eyesore to the public and does nothing for the image of Shannon Town, Shannon International Airport and the potential of Shannon’s industrial areas to attract vital employment to the county,” Flynn detailed in his proposal.

Shannon Town roundabout for many visitors to Clare is their first impression of the county after getting on the road from Shannon Airport, Cllr Flynn noted. He praised the efforts of Shannon Commercial Properties in trying to enhance the Industrial Estate but said it was time for TII to step up. Several attempts to improve the aesthetics have been made, TII’s actions to date have been to “cut shrubs” which grew back, Flynn commented.

Offers have been made from personnel in the aviation centre to donate a piece of aircraft that would be placed as a structure on the roundabout so that an immediate identification and link is made between Shannon Airport and the town, Flynn told the meeting.

Having an aviation feature at the roundabout would be a major plus, Cllr Donna McGettigan (SF) said while seconding the proposal.

Flower pots were placed around various roundabouts in the town by Shannon Tidy Towns last year, Cllr Pat O’Gorman (FF) recalled, “a bit of flowering and greenery brightens up the area, it definitely makes an improvement and lifts your heart to see it”.

“It is a very important piece of infrastructure as you enter Shannon Town and Shannon Airport,” Cllr PJ Ryan (IND) stated. “I would like the idea of a piece of air equipment mounted on the roundabout, it is very important for an indication of what is coming up. Something like a model of an aircraft would be very important”.

Cllr Michael Begley (IND) queried if the roundabout could benefit from the maintenance funding issued to Clare County Council. Senior executive engineer, Tom Mellett said the roundabout fell under TII’s responsibility.

“Its maintenance to date has been less than desirable. It is not a statement to say you are entering Shannon Town, Shannon Airport or the Industrial Estate, this as a symbol to remember Shannon is disgraceful,” Flynn said of the roundabout.

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