INFRASTRUCTURE upgrades in an area where many residents can only leave their homes by car due to a lack of footpaths may cost up to €4.5m - a sum Cork County Council has said it does not have.
Issues regarding the lack of pedestrian access and public lighting have been ongoing for several years in an area located off the Togher Road between Lehenaghmore and Lehenaghbeg.
Original plans to address the problems were shelved in 2012 due to a lack of funds.
Several housing estates have sprung up in the area in recent years and local Councillor Eoghan Jeffers (SF) said the lack of proper infrastructure in the area is putting residents' safety at risk.
“Residents living in Lehenaghmore and Lehenaghbeg are massively frustrated due to the lack of progress on this road,” he said.
"The development of many housing estates in this area without even a footpath is disgraceful and it’s clear that residents have been let down.
"Due to the large volumes of residential and commercial traffic on this road and the lack of a safe pedestrian route, it’s highly dangerous for anybody to try and walk from their house to the local shop, work or to Lehenaghmore Park which is used by many local sports clubs,” he added.
County Council director of services Tom Stritch said the cost of upgrades is up to €4.5m and funds will have to be sought from central Government.
“The Council’s consulting engineers have developed a preliminary design solution for the upgrade of the 2km roads in the area and are progressing design work on the associated road surface water drainage system,” he said.
“The consultants have compiled the project construction cost estimate for the road improvement project and are now preparing preliminary land take maps based on the preliminary design which will used to estimate land take costs and hence the overall cost of. On receipt of the land-take cost estimate, a total project cost estimate can be calculated, but it may be in the region of €4.5 million,” he added.