CORK County Council has signed off on the design phase for the Mallow relief road.
The relief road will aim to alleviate traffic congestion in Mallow town for motorists trying to access the busy N72 that links Mallow to Killarney and Waterford and to Mitchelstown via the N73.
The relief road scheme will now go to the design phase followed by Compulsory Purchase Orders (CPOs), an Environmental Impact Statement and submission to An Board Pleanála for approval.
Cork County Council, in partnership with the Department of Transport, and Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) has been investigating options to relieve traffic congestion in Mallow Town Centre.
Earlier this week, a contract for the design preparation of the N72/N73 Relief Road for Mallow was signed by Cork County Council Divisional Manager James Fogarty with Barry Transportation Ltd.
An Irish firm of engineering consultants specialising in the development of road infrastructure, Barry Transportation Ltd, have been appointed as Technical Advisors for the preparation of the design and environmental reports for the scheme.
The firm will provide all engineering, environmental, economic and appraisal services required to deliver the project through the planning and design phases.
“Cork County Council’s objectives in the proposed development of a Mallow Relief Road is to free up the town centre for local traffic while facilitating a more efficient bypass route around the town,” said Mr Fogarty.
“The Mallow Northern Relief Road is mentioned in strategic outcomes of the National Development Plan for enhancing regional accessibility.
“The development of this relief road is significant both in terms of delivering on quality of life for Mallow residents and in terms of delivering national policy at local level,” he added.
The Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr Christopher O'Sullivan welcomed the news:
“This contract signing is an important step forward for the town.
“Mallow is well-positioned but its sustainability and growth is impacted by traffic congestion in the town centre, the relief road will greatly enhance the potential of the town.”
Last year, business chiefs in Mallow appealed to the Government to release funds to help unclog the congested town centre.
Mallow town is regularly congested by bottlenecks and a 2015 Indecon Report found that a bypass could bring €90m worth of business into the area by improving the town’s infrastructure and accessibility.