KERRY County Council has been urged to plan ahead and take the steps necessary to help smooth the way for the development of much-needed social housing on a substantial parcel of land it owns off the Killarney bypass road.
The council and Transport Infrastructure Ireland have plans to upgrade the busy bypass junction, including the construction of a new roundabout and, in the longer term, it will incorporate a new link road to Deerpark.
Cllr Niall O’Callaghan has now proposed that the local authority should advance plans to develop social housing so that it can be tied in with the new routes rather than having to revisit the matter again after the new roundabout is in place.
“Before the Killarney bypass improvements get the go ahead, Kerry County Council’s housing department should proceed to develop the lands on the Spa side of the bypass for social housing,” he said.
“Those involved should proceed with the design, planning and funding of this development to ensure they are ready and will not have to react in a few years,” Cllr O’Callaghan said.
He said the land off the bypass, which was bought during the term of the former Killarney Town Council, currently has no access from the main road and, for sensible planning purposes, that should be provided in conjunction with the bypass development.
“If they were to develop the road first and then go back to seek planning for a road to the council land to develop housing it could set us back another two years.
“It makes no sense to do it in a piecemeal fashion and we need to push ahead now, in a structured manner, with what we need to do,” Cllr O’Callaghan told KillarneyToday.com.
He said Killarney is urgently in need of social housing and there is the potential to develop “a couple of hundred houses” on that council owed site.