40-year campaign for path along dangerous Limerick road 

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The dangerous stretch of road between Rich Hill Woods and Grangewood Estates in Lisnagry.

A STRETCH of road where two residents have been struck by passing cars and schoolchildren have to scramble up a steep muddy bank to avoid traffic has no footpath despite a 40-year campaign by locals.

Residents who have to walk the 150 yard stretch of unlit road, between Rich Hill Woods and Grangewood Estates in Lisnagry on the outskirts of Limerick City are warning that there will be a fatality or further serious injuries unless the local authority comes up with a solution to the problem.

“The traffic here builds up a huge amount of speed and there is literally nowhere for pedestrians to go except up on to a very steep grass bank,” James Ryan, whose son Glen had his arm broken by the wing mirror of a passing car, told the Limerick Post.

“I’ve seen schoolchildren who are dropped off by the bus have to scramble up that bank to avoid cars. If it’s raining the bank is treacherous, muddy, and slippy.

“There is literally no place for people to walk as there is a stone wall on the opposite side of the road.”

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Another resident had previously had his arm injured in similar circumstances and there have been dozens of near-misses between cars, cyclists and pedestrians James said.

After corresponding with the council requesting an interactive electronic speed control “smiley face” sign, residents are furious that the sign was “erected after that deadly 150-yard stretch and located outside Rich Hill Woods, where it is practically useless.”

Of the two affected estates, there are 16 homes in Rich Hill Woods with 64 residents including school age children, and in Grangewood 22 homes with 80 residents, also with school age children.

Now at the start of the new school term, with kids and parents walking to the local Lisnagry and Ahane schools, James says that “parents are terrified at the prospect of kids being killed or injured at this 150-yard stretch without a footpath, which residents of both estates have campaigned for since the 1970s.”

“That’s the last century,” he added.

Green Party Councillor Sean Hartigan last week announced that “there is currently a path connecting the Grangewood Estate with the R445. Residents of Rich Hill Woods, which is 100 meters from Grangewood, are looking for a path between the two estates for many years”.

“This would enable people to safety walk from to Annacotty and local schools. Following ongoing representation from me, Council engineers are currently looking at the possibility of putting a path with associated lighting in place to connect these two estates.”

Green Party TD Brian Leddin has also been on the case, writing to residents saying “I have been raising the issue of the path with Council staff for quite a while and they will be putting in a funding application soon.