A regularly used slip road in the Comeragh area is set to be abandoned, after a majority vote by Comeragh District councillors at their April meeting.
The slip road off the N25, before Walsh’s Garage in the direction of Carrick, was abandoned to ensure a ‘maximum reduction of speed’.
Instead of taking the slip road, motorists will now have to turn at an alternative junction around 100m further along the N25.
After a period of public consultation, with five submissions received – the proposal was brought to close the slip road from the N25 to the R676 Carrick-on-Suir road at Lemybrien by Senior Engineer for Roads, Mr. Gabriel Hynes.
Mr. Hynes noted that in traditional means, slip roads of this kind were put in place to facilitate motorists and to ‘get them off the main stream’.
“It has been shown that these slip roads in urban environments are contributing to higher speeds and are being taken out nationally”, said Mr. Hynes.
A recent survey had found that the average speed joining the slip road was 70km/h with maximum speeds at 105km/h.
At the newer junction, motorists will now be required to reduce their speed to 30km/h, which will slow traffic coming from behind.
Cllr. Liam Brazil (Fine Gael), a regular user of the road, said that it was the ‘wrong thing to do for Lemybrien’ and voted against its abandonment.
“When you have an articulated truck coming from Carrick-on-Suir, and one coming in off the main road as well, that is going to cause confusion at this junction. I don’t think the junction is wide enough, and I can’t understand how TII (Transport Infrastructure Ireland) have decided to take off this slip road.”
Cllr. Brazil noted his concerns that a higher volume of traffic would resultantly flow through the estate beside Veale’s Shop.
“I think it’ll make Lemybrien a more dangerous place than a safer place”, he concluded.
Cllr. Seanie Power (Fine Gael) was also against the idea of abandoning the road. He said that a lot of the submissions were made from the point of view of cyclists as opposed to motorists and said that the new junction is ‘going to cause havoc’.
Cllr. John O’Leary (Fianna Fáil); Cllr. Ger Barron (Labour) and Cllr. Declan Clune (Independent) voted in favour of abandoning the road.
Cllr. O’Leary noted that at each monthly meeting’s road discussion, all councillors share a desire to make roads safer. Citing road fatality figures, Cllr. O’Leary was of the opinion that the proposal was a further enhancement of road safety in the Lemybrien area.
“In the long term, this will be seen as beneficial in terms of road safety from an operational perspective.”
Cllr. Declan Clune said that the issues raised by Cllr. Brazil should not be discounted, but conceded that “the reality is if we don’t pass this, we will lose funding and will be back to square one.”
On the grounds of assurances given to him by the road engineers, Cllr. Ger Barron was happy to support the proposal.