The planning application for the Galway City Outer Ring Road will not be ready to be sent to An Bord Pleanala until the middle of 2018, a situation a local councillor has described as “utterly unacceptable”.
This week, the Galway City Council confirmed that the application will not be ready to be sent to ABP. The delay is down to a number of factors including “further approvals” being required from the Government; officials in Department of the Gaeltacht having yet to translate the application into Irish; and meetings which need to take place with the National Parks and Wildlife Service o satisfy a number of areas of concern.
Fianna Fáil city councillor Peter Keane has described this as “utterly unacceptable”, especially since the application was due to have gone to ABP in July. He also alleged that the road was “clearly not a high priority for Fine Gael deputies in this constituency”. He added: “Commuters in this city have suffered for long enough. This project has been much delayed and it is past time the Government started treating the project with the respect and urgency it deserves.”
Cllr Keane made his comments at a public meeting this week on transport. It was attended by some 200 delegates and received presentations from the Galway City Council on the Galway Transportation Strategy, as well as from Bus Éireann on plans to further enhance the Bus Network throughout the city. Commenting on the Strategy, Cllr Keane said “there is little point in having Plans if they are not backed up by the requisite Government Investment".
The strategy which aims to introduce short and medium terms measures has been costed at €250 million and to ensure its implementation must be financially front ended to €25 millioni in the first 18 months. “Traffic demand in our city has soared in the last decade," said Cllr Keane, "with minimal Government Investment in the Transport Network and this cannot continue."