Milltown Road Upgrade Works Latest Draft PlanPosted 30 May. 2017
I want to thank everyone that filled in the questionnaire on the Milltown road upgrade earlier this month. The information collected is invaluable especially to me as your representative in the area and for our Transport department and design team in Meath County Council.
I appreciate how open residents were and how genuinely interested people are in being involved in the betterment of Ashbourne, now and into the future. I had the opportunity to meet and listen to you about concerns and ways of improving the area. Of the 138 hand delivered questionnaires, I collected 55, which gives a very accurate picture of what the majority of people want.
The top 5 concerns in order of preference were:
3) Road surface
4) Cycle lanes
5) Public lighting
There were also a number of other issues, but these depended on where residents lived on the road. Some of these include: green spaces outside homes (a separate meeting took place today with concerned residents and Meath Co. Co. which will hopefully address this); parking in certain areas is a problem and must be addressed; the traffic lights at the top of Bachelor's Walk and time taken to exit junction; litter bins and dog foul bins, parking at the pitches, parking on footpaths; dangerous over taking; lack of signage like speed limits; there was a lot of positivity for cycle lanes however the lack of traffic enforcement has many concerned about their practicality; and finally, with additional new homes on the road, residents worried about traffic volumes and amount of HGVs. There is €1.06m ring-fenced for the project and the extent of the Council's works includes Bachelor's Walk, Milltown road and Milltown Bridge (this does not include a new bridge).
There will be a signalled traffic light system put on the bridge to improve safety. This may allow for a pedestrian footpath, however, cyclists will be expected to dismount here.
I'm delighted to say that soon an agreement will be reached with MCC and the Dept. of Education to purchase a small triangular piece of current wasteland at the back of the school which will allow pedestrian and cycle access to the estate. I also hope that there will be two allotments here for Prosper Meath and the HSE mental health unit. There will be a sensory garden created at this point.
Hunter's Lane Junction
Hunter's lane and the traffic problems at the junction with Milltown road will be improved with a traffic table or raised surface designed to slow traffic down (a one way system here was not taken into consideration and many residents disliked the idea). There is a 1 acre site near Ashewood at the back of the Ashbourne House that I hope to see being utilised as a designated 'Park n' Ride.
Traffic calming measures and a raised crossing will be included for residents.
This area will have great safety improvements, especially for young children and families walking to school. There will also be a shared 3 metre pedestrian/cycle lane.
School set down
There will be added parking here to facilitate the proposed Linear Park.
White Ash Park
There will be a pedestrian crossing located outside the estate to allow people cross safely, especially during school hours.
Overall, the plan is positive and the road will be designed to give priority to the pedestrian. The road layout will slow traffic down, hopefully reducing the number of motorists who will use the road as a rat run. There will be a footpath on both sides of the road except at Sweeney's Hill where there will be a path on just one side. Meath County Council have been promising this road improvement for 25 years. This will be derived and I hope to see work starting late this year or early 2018.
What happens next?
Following all the submissions that residents have kindly filled in for me, the design team will produce a final design called a Part VIII, when a local authority proposes to carry out certain types of works such as the provision of roads or other infrastructure. It must publish its proposals and invite submissions from the public. The proposed works will be on public display in the Municipal building next to the Library and they will also be available on line. This will be another opportunity to have your say! Email me your opinions and to receive regular updates. The most up to date information will be right here on my website www.alantobin.ie