Councillors raise concerns over the state of roundabouts

Galway city councillors have lamented the state of roundabouts throughout the city at the council meeting on Monday.

The grass on a number of roundabouts in the city has become overgrown and city councillors feel that not only does it promote a poor, untidy, image of the city, but fear the unkempt roundabouts could hinder Galway's chances of becoming European Capital of Culture for 2020.

Cllr Terry O'Flaherty said visibility was being impaired by the roundabouts and that "health and safety was the biggest difficulty".

Fine Gael councillor Pearce Flannery described the grass on roundabouts and in some housing estates as "meadows". "We have a week to go until the judges of the European Capital of Culture 2020 visit Galway to sort the grass out. The council needs to get off their bottoms to get the job done."

Cllr Ollie Crowe said: "We need to get a hold of the situation. I cannot understand how we put millions into the Capital of Culture and then are unable to find the resources to cut grass."

Independent councillor Declan McDonnell echoed Mr Crowe's sentiments: "This [grass cutting] has never been a problem any other year. Yet this year of the Galway 2020 bid we cannot get the grass cut. You would need a tractor to drive through these roundabouts they are that overgrown."

Director of services Tom Connell admitted the roundabouts were "not up standard". "Extra staff will be allocated from other departments in order to try to get the grass cutting under control. The work was tendered and a contractor allocated and the urgent work would be carried out over the next few days. There is a huge challenge with regards to having enough staff available to cut the grass."

Cllr Ollie Crowe believed that this was a "cop out" from the director of services.

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