‘Put 2km exclusion zone around Páirc’

‘Put 2km exclusion zone around Páirc’
Match traffic from the Cork and Kerry Munster final parked on double yellow lines at Cherry Court. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

A FORMER Lord Mayor has said traffic and parking problems from Saturday’s Munster Final have reinforced the need for a 2km exclusion zone around Páirc Uí Chaoimh for big matches.

Although the GAA and the Gardaí carry out extensive traffic control around the stadium and nearby streets, former Lord Mayor Terry Shannon said that the wider area, including Ballinlough and Beaumont, are still badly affected.

Match traffic from the Cork and Kerry Munster final parked on double yellow lines at Cherry Court. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Match traffic from the Cork and Kerry Munster final parked on double yellow lines at Cherry Court. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

During Cork and Kerry’s Munster Final clash on Saturday, which coincided with Jenny Greene and the RTÉ Concert Orchestra at Live at the Marquee, Mr Shannon said that cars were left on grass verges, corners, and on footpaths. He said the vast majority of cars had Cork registration plates, meaning the problem was coming from the Cork itself, not supporters from other counties.

At tonight’s City Council meeting, Mr Shannon will ask for more transparency over the GAA’s traffic plans, to see if the organisation is complying with commitments made during the planning process for the new stadium. He will also call for a 2km exclusion zone, more manned traffic barriers, and promotion of the Black Ash Park & Ride and city centre car parks. He said that the GAA needs to treat Páirc Uí Chaoimh the same way other stadiums are.

“You can’t drive up to the gate of Croke Park, or the Aviva, or [Semple Stadium] Thurles. What applies elsewhere should apply in Cork. This is a cost of business for the GAA, as far as I’m concerned. They have to be good neighbours.”

Cllr Terry Shannon with match traffic from the Cork and Kerry Munster final Ardmahon. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Cllr Terry Shannon with match traffic from the Cork and Kerry Munster final Ardmahon. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

Mr Shannon said the Gardaí should also reintroduce physical parking tickets, instead of sending them in the post as seeing tickets on windscreens would discourage other drivers from parking in the same areas.

He said the situation during big matches is a threat to public safety, but nothing will change if new plans are not made now as there won’t be any major matches in the stadium again until next year.

“The fact that there has not been an emergency means people think ‘we’ve gotten away with it’ and do nothing.”

He said the GAA should treat big matches the same way concert organisers Aiken Promotions did during Ed Sheeran’s three-day stint at the stadium earlier this year.

“Ed Sheeran showed us how it’s done,” he said.

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