A LOCAL councillor has called on Kildare Co Council to ring-fence funding to purchase a public car park space in the town of Kilcullen.
Already overspill from the town is going into the Riverside Manor and Saddler’s Way estates, causing some residents to get blocked into their own homes.
“It’s a busy town, a thriving town – which is great – but the infrastructure has to match it to meet that need,” said Cllr Tracey O’Dwyer.
“It is important to start the discussion…but they will have to purchase a site,” she explained.
She was honest when she said she was “reluctant to make suggestions because I’m not an engineer…but there are sites available in Kilcullen”.
Currently, the only publicly-available car parking in the town is on-street parking, and this is expected to be reduced with the streetscape improvements anticipated for the as yet unpublished Local Area Plan (LAP).
“It’s quite difficult to get a figure from them [the Roads Section],” she said when asked how many spaces were going to be lost to the town, “but I don’t think it’s a definite plan yet, and it will cause upset to the residents and businesses concerned”.
At present people are using the private car parks at the Centra and the church in an ad hoc arrangement, and Cllr O’Dwyer was quick to commend their generosity of community spirit.
“Thankfully the church and the shop have no plans [to alter this] but this could change,” she said.
“You can’t put the cart before the horse, and if you want to look after traffic in the town you have to provide for an overspill,” she explained.
“Kildare Co Council has a responsibility to invest in providing a public car park that meets the ever expanding needs of Kilcullen.
“People travel from the wider hinterland to carry out their business in Kilcullen and to support and meet this demand there is a need for a public car park in the town.
“It is time for the Council to invest in proper infrastructure in Kilcullen to improve both the quality of life for residents and visitors alike,” she added.