THE ‘over-capacity’ of the N40 South Ring Road is becoming a major traffic issue in Cork.
That was the warning from Fine Gael councillor John Buttimer at this week’s meeting of the Cork City Joint Policing Committee (JPC).
Mr Buttimer said that there are daily access issues due to the enormous volumes of traffic on the South Ring.
“Every single day, there is a lot of traffic queueing on the road. There are huge queues on every single off-ramp from EMC to the tunnel. This is the case during peak traffic and, at times, off-peak too, such is the level of reliance on the road.”
Mr Buttimer pointed to the recent chaos caused when the Jack Lynch tunnel was closed overnight for maintenance. The closure coincided with works by Irish Water on the Lower Glanmire Road, with the two situations causing huge traffic tailbacks.
“The city ground to a halt,” he said.
“We are heavily dependent on the N40 and, as such, we are heavily compromised if it goes down.
“There is considerable queueing and, as a result, erratic behaviour on the road. There are accidents on a daily basis.”
City chief Ann Doherty conceded that the N40 is ‘challenged.’
“Transport Infrastructure Ireland manages the N40 on behalf of the State. They have undertaken a demand study that is due to be discussed in the coming weeks.
“There is also the metropolitan transport study, conducted by the National Transport Authority, which is due to go for public consultation in the coming weeks. This will look as bus priority and other sustainable measures.”
The ‘serious delays’ and ‘heavy volumes’ of traffic on the road were also acknowledged by Chief Superintendent Barry McPolin.
He appealed to motorists to be mindful of other road users and to drive safely.