*Cllr Pat Daly. Photograph: Martin Connolly
Calls for the installation of a traffic island at Kilmorane in Ennis have been rejected by Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) putting the future of one business at risk.
An inspection and review of the junction at Kilmorane by the TII found that traffic movements “do not validate a right turning lane”. Senior executive engineer, John Gannon outlined the details following a motion by Cllr Pat Daly (FF) to a recent meeting of the Ennis Municipal District.
Installation of a traffic island was requested by Daly to accommodate traffic coming from the direction of Ennis towards West Clare. He also called for the reinstatement of a hard shoulder close to six residential houses and one business.
Speaking at the meeting, the former parliamentary assistant to ex Minister Tony Killeen described the exit as “very dangerous”. Daly added, “There is a new business there which has been deprived of what they want to sell, it is not sustainable at the moment, there are ten jobs involved”.
Residents are finding it “very difficult” to manoeuvre, Cllr Ann Norton (IND) detailed. “They are in fear more so than anything else. We have to encourage business and support business. It was a site that was sitting idle for some time, it is great to see it in use”.
High levels of speed are an issue at the location according to Cllr Johnny Flynn (FG). “Residents out there are in fear of their lives, they are in fear of being rear-ended because of the speeds at the junction”. He recalled that the location “was an eyesore before the business went there”.
Cllr Mary Howard (FG) questioned if the TII were aware of the fatalities on the road before coming to their assessment. Cllr Mark Nestor (FF) described the reply from Gannon as “very disappointing”. Agreement was voiced by Cllr Paul Murphy (FG), “It is disappointing. I’m on the Council 13 years, we have raised this before and the same response comes time and time again”.
TII are responsible for the road given it is a national primary route, Gannon flagged. He visited the site with TII officials in recent weeks. “They have stated to me their concern that putting in a right turn would make it more dangerous. The turning movements wouldn’t necessitate a right turning lane”. Councillors were encouraged to examine the planning file by senior executive engineer, Eamon O’Dea.