Plans to create greater density in housing estates like Corrib Park, Carn Ard, Ballinfoyle Park, and Castle Park, will “jeopardise” community and recreational facilities in those areas and fail to solve traffic and safety problems.
This is the view of Fianna Fáil city councillor Ollie Crowe, who has condemned plans by the Galway City Council to develop 23 houses across the four estates. Under a current Government Directive on Housing, the council has been told to identify land in existing estates where further infill development can take place. A design team and plans are currently being advanced to commence development. Infill development is the process of developing vacant or under-used parcels within existing urban areas which are already largely developed.
Speaking to the Galway Advertiser, Cllr Crowe said Fianna Fáil was opposing the plan as Corrib Park, which has has 332 houses and more than 800 residents, has only one vehicular entrance to the estate. “Traffic problems already exist at the location, with residents suffering on a daily basis trying to get in and out of their estate,” he said.
However he also drew attention to the fact that infill development on the site would increase traffic through the area and that this raises safety concerns. We cannot have additional traffic in Corrib Park” said Cllr. Crowe. “Enough is enough and residents must be protected,” he said. As a result, he has called for increased public transport options and facilites for the area instead, and criticised a recent Government refusal to provide funding for bus shelters on Seamus Quirke Road.
It is understood that city plans to develop four houses on a green area close to the bungalows at Corrib Park, but this, he said, threatens community and recreational facilities in the area. “Decades of hard work by residents and local councillors have resulted in first class sporting and passive recreational amenities being created in Westside,” he said, “and one stroke of a pen jeopardises this. This will not happen on my watch.”
Cllr Crowe said: “We need to encourage children and teenagers to exercise more and do all we can to deal with obesity and mental health wellbeing. The number of houses currently in these four estates is at maximum capacity and to impose further density is morally wrong and I call on GCC to immediately stop the design process because it is a complete waste of significant taxpayer’s money.”