TRAFFIC in Carrigaline is at breaking point according to a local councillor who believes the Bóthar Guidel town bypass needs to be widened and a one-way system needs to be considered to tackle the problem.
Councillor John A. Collins (FG) said peak time traffic is seriously affecting the town’s inhabitants and urgent traffic measures are needed to alleviate the increasing volumes.
Mr Collins said the widening of the Bóthar Guidel road should be the first measure taken.
“It’s a standalone part of the Carrigaline Local Area Traffic Plan and it could be done. We need to widen it. It would cost about €500,000,” he said.
“The main carriageway can stay. It’s the pieces on both sides that need to be done. I reckon the whole thing can be done between one and a half and two years,” he added.
Another issue is the size of the roundabout which connects Carrigaline to the Crosshaven Road.
“Artics that are supposed to be using the bypass are coming up and down the main street because the Crosshaven Road roundabout is too small,” said Mr Collins.
While the widening of the Bóthar Guidel road will tackle some of the town’s traffic issues, new housing developments will add to the traffic volumes, with 200 units planned on the south side of the town.
A one-way system should be considered said Mr Collins.
“[Traffic] will be an ongoing problem until such time as we contact it head on. [A one-way system] works in Bandon, Clonakilty, Midleton and Bantry. It works absolutely everywhere else,” he said.
“Ultimately it's for the greater good of the people and for businesses. It will make the town more attractive for shopping. It will free up traffic and parking spaces and allow people to come in and do business in the village,” he added.
The Western Relief Road in Carrigaline is expected to be ready for construction in quarter two of 2018 when designs are completed.
Engineering and project management company Atkins signed a contract to complete the design in May but local councillors have said traffic is getting worse weekly.
The relief road is to be located a short distance west of Carrigaline Main Street and it is hoped it will allow traffic to bypass the town centre and allow for further development.
Census 2016 figures showed that Carrigaline is the fastest growing town in the county, ahead of Cobh, and its congested Main Street carries up to 15,000 vehicles a day.