Kildare Co Council has been asked to widen and straighten the ‘pinch points’ on the Ballyroe Road between the R417 and the R418.
That request came from Cllr Veralouise Behan at January’s meeting of Athy Municipal District, with a written report confirming that the local roads (L8076 and L8077) which link the R417 with the R418 have a few areas with pinch points and that there are narrow areas at a number of locations along the road.
‘The road in question will need to be surveyed to see the extent of the problem and to ascertain if there is a simple solution,’ the report stated. ‘At present time the Department of Transport only provide finance for the improvement of existing road surface under the Restoration Improvement and Restoration Maintenance grants. Road widening and alignment are only financed where they are part of strategic improvement. This will obviously be a long-term project as the Restoration Improvements and Restoration Maintenances and all improvement have been submitted in 2022 for this year.’
Cllr Behan said there’s a lot of traffic for a rural location, noting that there are some parts where the bends are so narrow two big vehicles can’t fit.
Cllr Ivan Keatley queried the next steps and wondered about land acquisition.
Area engineer Dave O’Flaherty noted that 23 years ago it was widened and they tried to improve the alignment. He said land acquisition will be required to improve it and said they need a full design before doing anything.
“We do need a design,” he stated.
Cllr Behan suggested signage to highlight the pinch points in the meantime, and Mr O’Flaherty said they can install some signage flagging that there’s a number of bends ahead.