CORK City Council has said it has appointed an external engineer to conduct “a full structural assessment” of a number of balconies at council flats following concerns from residents about their condition.
The action follows a motion submitted by South-West Ward Sinn Féin councillor Eolan Ryng, who called on the council to conduct “an immediate safety inspection of the verandas of the flats at Clashduv Road, Sycamore Place, and Togher Road”.
The council stated that an initial safety inspection had taken place and further audits would be undertaken to identify if work needed to be carried out.
“The Cork City Council area engineer and clerk of works attended one of the sites at Clashduv Road and assessed the issues with the balcony.
“On initial inspection, it was found that there are material but non-structural issues present.
“Following the inspection, a suitably qualified external engineer has been engaged to carry out a full structural assessment of this balcony, all others within the block, and to extend the investigations to other sites in the area, and to provide us with a report on findings and proposed actions, where considered necessary.
“On initial inspection, the external engineer is satisfied that the slabs at Clashduv Road are not a collapse threat and will return with a full report and recommendations once complete,” Cork City Council said.
In the immediate term, the council said it had “sought to provide protection in the most affected area”.
It added that all site reports would be reviewed and that an “action plan for any necessary remediations to the apartment complexes” would be put in place.
Mr Ryng welcomed Cork City Council’s commitment to a full inspection of the balconies at Clashduv Road, Togher Road, and surrounding areas.
“In August, several residents contacted me to raise concerns about the visual appearance of the balconies and the barriers. Cracks had appeared underneath several balconies and the safety barriers looked corroded.
“In early September, I was again contacted by residents, who reported that debris had fallen from one balcony,” he said.
Mr Ryng said that the further assessments the council had said would be carried out needed to be “prioritised as urgent”.
“Any works that need to be done to ensure the safety of residents and the general public, need to be carried out as soon as possible.”