Urgent need for road upgrade
THE council has been asked ‘as a matter of urgency address the serious need to upgrade and widen the footpath and the installation of a cycle lane between the entrance to St. Ita’s Hospital Campus and the primary schools off the Portrane Road’.
Cllr Adrian Henchy (FF) made the calll, explaining that the route is ‘an increasingly busy corridor for walkers, joggers and cyclists and there is significant space to allow for this long awaited safety improvement along this corridor’.
He explained that ‘given the increase of traffic on the Portrane Road as St Ita’s Hospital Campus becomes a busier campus and the imminent arrival of the New National Forensic Hospital at this location’, the situation is all the more urgent.
In response, the council issued a written report stating: ‘The stretch of the Portrane Road referred to is approximately 1.5km in length, and has a narrow footpath on the northern side of the roadway.
‘The road is single-lane in both directions, and is c. 6 metres wide in total, and there is insufficient space available to provide a wider footpath or cycle path on either side of the road without significant land acquisition, in addition to improvements to the existing drainage systems and surfacing costs.
‘A project of this nature is outside the scope of the Operations Department in terms of both scale and costs. The Operations Department will refer this request to the Planning & Strategic Infrastructure Department for consideration.’
Cllr Henchy accepted that the project may need the involvement of the Planning and Strategic Development Department within the council but again stressed its urgency.
He said the route, had ‘effectively the same footpath network as when I was a child in the area’.
He said that the road ‘lends itself to people driving at speed’ and that pedestrians walking on the footpath can ‘literally feel the vibrations of the passing cars at their feet’.
He said a wider footpath and a cycle lane for the route would be a ‘very positive’ development and he vowed to keep the issue on the agenda.
Cllr Paul Mulville (SD) who also lives on the Donabate Portrane peninsula, agreed with Cllr Henchy and said that they would both continue to push for the project.
He said it would ‘make so much sense if kids could cycle from Portrane to school (in Donabate)’ along that route.