After weeks of driving at a crawl due to some of the worst wintry weather in decades, commuters are being advised to plan for further delays as the main road between Waterford City and Tramore is shut for prolonged flood prevention works.

A ‘managed closure’ of the route for most of the next four months is to come into effect on Monday (January 11th), with alternative arteries to and from the city – such as the Old Tramore Road through Kilcohan and Avondale, and via Butlerstown – set to become congested at peak times.

The closure until April 23rd has been well flagged, with a neon sign at the Ballindud/Outer Ring Road intersection alerting motorists for the past several weeks that diversions will be in place to enable crews to commence the €2m Tramore Road phase of the Waterford City Flood Alleviation Scheme.

Closures of what is one of the city and county’s busiest secondary roads have been a regular occurrence since the early 1960s due to the adjacent John’s River wetlands being inundated through a combination of heavy rainfall and high tides.

Though a “not perfect” solution – flooding will still occur, just less frequently – it will involve raising the surface by varying amounts of up to a metre between the Inner Ring (Superquinn) and Green Road junctions.

At this week’s meeting of Tramore Town Council, Town Clerk John O’Sullivan said he had been assured by the City Council’s Senior Roads Engineer Frank Roche that drainage work on the Tramore side of Ballindud roundabout, currently underway, would prevent any further flooding in that area, irrespective of rainfall.

When that’s completed work will commence on raising the road from there to Kilbarry.