A cross party group of East Cork Councillors have approved plans for two footbridges in Castlemartyr. The Local Authority, however, say they do not possess the finances to build them.
The shared pedestrian cycle space will span the Kiltha River at the Greengrocers and the Hunted Hog, linking the northern side of Castlemartyr Main Street to the L3805-44 and its Southern side to the R632.
The single span crossing is required to aid pedestrian safety in the village, as there are few crossing points along the N25.
Up to 15,000 vehicles pass through the area on a daily basis, of which a high percentage are heavy goods vehicles.
If funding can be sourced, the new plans would ensure accessibility for those on foot, the elderly, and people with special needs.
The existing footpath adjacent to the east and west carriageways over the river is below the recommended width of 1.5m, often forcing wheelchair users and those pushing prams onto the busy N25.
Sinn Fein Cllr Danielle Twomey welcomed the progress saying that for many years people living on the Killeagh side of Castlemartyr feel a disconnect from the main village.
“It would mean so much to so many people living on the Killeagh side of the village who cannot access basic amenities, such as the shop, to buy everyday grocery items.”
Cllr Mary Linehan Foley said she had her reservations that the project would proceed.
“We were here with the footbridge in Killeagh subject to funding and it wasn’t incorporated, and we are still here today waiting for the one in Killeagh.”
The Independent Cllr said she would hope that funding would be in place for both the Killeagh and Castlemartyr schemes.
Fine Gael Cllr Michael Hegarty said “we are doing what is requested of us to ensure the planning process is adhered to. When we did the part 8 process for the bridge in Killeagh we got the usual response from Transport Infrastructure Ireland that there was no funding for it.”
The Cllrs are to put the case forward to the District's four sitting TD’s next month for funding for both schemes.