Council ‘need to go back to drawing board’ for University Avenue

Councillor Olivia O'Sulilvan at the yet-to-be-completed Coonagh to Knockalisheen Road.

PLANS announced by the Council for a new 650m-long pedestrian, cycle, and low speed vehicular link between Moyross and Caherdavin has once again come under strong criticism from one local councillor.

The University Avenue scheme incorporates the current access road to Thomond Community College (TCC), the adjacent campus of the Technological University of the Shannon (TUS), and other public and private lands. The local authority takes the view that the scheme will act as a driver for economic development across this part of the city.

Limerick City and County Council also considers the road a key strategic infrastructure proposal for the northside of the city with a road, cycle, and pedestrian link between communities in Moyross and Caherdavin.

However, Fine Gael councillor Olivia O’Sullivan, who told the Limerick Post last week that she does not support the scheme, has the protect in her sights once more.

“The Council have got this one wrong. The design as presented is not acceptable to the many residents that have spoken to me from Woodview, Coolraine Heights, Brookville Gardens, and the Old Cratloe Road. I have formally requested the route be re-examined,” she said this week.

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“The Council need to go back to the drawing board. There are lots of alternatives that can be explored, and I have been receiving many constructive ideas, which I know the Council are also in receipt of in their feedback.”

Speaking in relation to last week’s public consultation, Cllr O’Sullivan commented, “As predicted, there was a huge turnout at TUS for the University Avenue public consultation that I had requested take place to inform residents of plans being conceived for their neighbourhood.”

“It has been quite an upsetting time for many who were shocked at the proposals to change the layout into the Woodview residential estate, making the one entrance/exit that has always existed here into a through road.

“What did not help matters when residents wanted to focus on the traffic problems and road design issues, were the accusations made from certain corners that tried to create an ‘us and them’ situation out of this.

“Residents who will be affected by this project are fully entitled to raise issues with a road design that will hugely impact their daily lives, without having to sustain public accusations of social discrimination and ‘segregation’.”

Cllr O’Sullivan went onto say that she is confident alternative solutions can be found that will be acceptable by all communities involved.

She also pointed out this same area is still waiting on completion of the Coonagh to Knockalisheen Road, which will change traffic flow in the area with expected increased traffic through the Old Cratloe Road.

“We have yet to see how this change will bed in, with frustratingly long delays in the project following Roadbridge going into receivership in March 2022.”