An attempt to secure funding to significantly reduce congestion along one of East Cork’s busiest intersections has been rejected by Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII). TII have refused to fund the €1million project designed to transform the busy intersection between the R630 and the N25, the County’s main artery east, prompting Cllrs to challenge the Roads Authority.
Last year East Cork Cllrs approved plans for the new slip road onto the Lakeview Roundabout, in an effort to ease congestion and increase connectivity for villages between Whitegate and Ballinacurra. The plan for the feeder road allowed for a slip road to the southwest of the existing roundabout, to enable traffic coming from Ballinacurra and Whitegate merge with the N25 westbound to Cork City, bypassing the existing roundabout.
Cork County Council Director of Roads, Padraig Barrett, told Monday’s Southern Committee that TII refused to finance the enhancement because, they said, “it’s not a National roads issue.” He said “the work needs to be done as it has implications, not just for development in Midleton, but for Midleton as a whole” . The Director of Roads said that in the absence of TII funding for the dedicated merge lane he expected backing to come from local and planning contributions. It’s understood that last week Cork County Council was approved by the European Investment Bank for substantial funding to back major infrastructure which will aid the provision of public and affordable housing. According to a Council source it’s expected the Lake View project will attract funding from the EIB.
Fine Gael Cllr Michael Hegarty said failure to secure the necessary funds will have implications for the delivery of hundreds of new housing units along the route, under the Government Strategic Housing Development. He said the N25 between Midleton and Carrigtwohill will be gridlocked unless the new infrastructure is put in place. Independent Cllr Noel Collins agreed with his colleague stating “the Lakeview Roundabout will remain a jig saw feature, and a danger to life and limb, until funding is made available.”
It is anticipated that further Applications are planned under the Government Fast Track Legislation for the area between Ballinacurra and Whitegate.
In 2017 Cork County Council sought €2million for the upgrade of the Lakeview roundabout under the Department of Housing Local Infrastructure Housing Activation Fund (LIHAF).
However Housing Minister at the time, Simon Coveney, overlooked the Application, favouring a €6million investment for the Dunkettle Interchange, which would deliver 600 new homes in the Glanmire area over the next 3 years.