A senior Cork County Council official has called for a radical change in how speed limits operate at almost 70 East Cork estate roads.
The Authority’s Senior Engineer Dave Clark based in the Midleton district office made his comments as he released details of housing developments in the region to benefit from a new 30kph speed limit.
A total of 17 locations that include residential areas in Cloyne, Ballinacurra, Midleton and Youghal has seen 22 signs erected under low cost safety measure.
The Council’s road design department carried out the review of all housing estates in the authority’s charge.
Area engineering staff then compiled a priority list of estates that would benefit from the new speed restriction.
Mr Clarke said while its uncertain if further funding will be made available up to 70 estates in the Council’s control could be included in future schemes.
The senior engineer said of the 17 East Cork locations he “expected the reduction of speed limit will alter driver behaviour within these housing estates, lowering the incidents and severity of crashes.”
On welcoming the news Committee chairman Noel Collins said “it is a breath of fresh air to get something in writing because some reports would give a Panadol a headache.”
He said “the people will appreciate we are not sitting on our backsides doing nothing.”
The new speed limits are now in operation in Ballinacurra at Maplewoods, Millview and the Crescent in addition to Rose Hill east, Rose Hill Lawn and Rose Hill West.
In Midleton the new restrictions have been put in place at Broomfield estates Blueberry Fields, Blueberry Court, Copperfields, Copper Hill, Cypress Circuits, Meadowlands and Peatlands.
Similarly Beechwood Drive, Beechwood Court and Oakwood Lodge, Bonnog, Brookdale Upper and Lower, Carraig Liath, Ross na Coille, Tim Daly Terrace, Tom Clarke Terrace and Michael Collins Square also get reduced limits.
In Cloyne Cherryvale will receive a 30kph speed limit while in Youghal Chestnut Drive, Hill View and Kenny’s lane will also receive attention.
Deputy Mayor of Cork County Mary Linehan Foley said she would expect that all new housing estates that are under construction would now come with this 30KPH limit.
Mr Clarke said it was his understanding that modern designed estates have other measures in place as well to slow traffic such as calming measures.
Cllr Danielle Twomey raised concerns of speeding traffic along the spine road that intersects Midleton railway, an Rothar and the playground at Park road.
The Sinn Fein Cllr said since the reduced speed signs were installed at Tim Daly Terrace/ Tom Clarke Terrace and Michael Collins Square a new 50kph sign has appeared along the link road.
She said while the speed limit may have always been 50kph motorists may not have necessarily known this and that the new sign may now encourage higher speeds in what would appear to be a residential area.
Mr Clarke said “the road remains 50kph which is the standard speed limit for an urban road.”
He agreed the area could be considered as a housing estate road as it is considered a link road it will be considered in the next general review of speed limit which is scheduled to take place in 2021.