‘Access will change dynamic of traffic movement in town forever’

The plan is to link the High Street junction to Bohereen na Goun, on New Street, via the Monsignor O’Flaherty Road

PLANS for a long-awaited new inner relief road, running from the busy traffic junction at Upper High Street to Bohereen na Goun, near Dunnes Stores, are very much back on the agenda after Kerry County Council informed key landowners of its intention to pursue a compulsory purchase order.

The proposed route has been in the pipeline for several years and the council insists it is one solution to adequately tackling serious traffic congestion in the town.

Plans for the development, including maps and the necessary information, will be advertised by the end of this month, or in the first week of February, to allow members of the public to make observations or submissions.

John Ahern: Landowners have been informed

After that process has concluded, the information will be forwarded to An Bord Pleanála for consideration of the CPO application.

Councillors in Killarney were informed of the development at a meeting this afternoon with municipal district engineer, John Ahern, giving a brief outline of the council’s intentions and confirming the CPO decision.

Cllr Donal Grady, a long-time supporter of the relief road plans, enthusiastically welcomed the news and he said the development is “very badly wanted” in the town.

Cllr Niall Kelleher said it would be a key infrastructural advantage for Killarney going forward as it had been blocking progression of the town in that particular area.

“That access will change the dynamic of traffic movement in the town forever. I hope it is dealt with as speedily as possible and I hope it is dealt with as fairly as possible for the landowners involved,” he said.

Site surveys and ground investigations at Bohereen na Goun had already been completed, detailed designs for the project have been considered and a funding source was secured through the Urban Regeneration Development Fund a number of years ago.

Cllr Donal Grady: Very badly wanted
Cllr Niall Kelleher: Key advantage

Negotiations regarding the long-running saga of essential land acquisition – which is required to allow the plans to proceed as intended – have been ongoing with the three landowners involved for several years.

The inner relief road will run along the Monsignor O’Flaherty Road, off High Street, to Bohereen na Goun, at the rear of commercial premises on New Street, adjacent to the Killarney Enterprise Centre, Dunnes Stores and the Eir building next to the supermarket car park..

The long-term plan it to join the High Street junction with the new inner relief road, as proposed in a major traffic management study, commissioned by the council and published by consultants Malachy Walsh and Partners, in November 2016.