Limerick City and County Council has announced that construction is expected to begin this year on the €40m Coonagh to Knockalisheen Road Scheme following the allocation of €1.4m for the project.
The Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport has approved the scheme to advance to full Tender Stage. On successfully completing the Tender Stage, the scheme should proceed to construction by the end of 2014.
The scheme, a key element of the Moyross Regeneration Programme, will provide a new link road to Moyross, and a new 3km dual carriageway between the N18 at the Coonagh roundabout and the Knockalisheen Road along the North West side of the city. As part of the project, the Knockalisheen Road will be upgraded with new footpaths and cycle lanesresulting in improved access to communities, increased potential for development and reduced congestion in the city centre.
The €1.4m funding has been allocated to complete the land acquisition scheme and to carry out fencing works at the land purchased. The funding is in addition to €1.5m already allocated at the start of 2014.
Brian Geaney, speaking on behalf of the Office of Regeneration, Limerick City and County Council described the allocation as ‘great news particularly for the people of Moyross.’
“This road is a key element of the new infrastructure required to open up Moyross and should be the catalyst to drive on the remainder of the work required under the Regeneration Framework Implementation plans and attract in private investment,” he explained. “It’s a major project costed at €40m out of a total of €106m value of projects for the Moyross area and it will provide a great boost for the overall Regeneration process resulting in approx 100 plus construction jobs over a 30 month construction period.”
Chairperson of the Moyross Regeneration Committee and Princpal of Corpus Christi School, Moyross, Tiernan O’Neill described the announcement as “hugely welcomed by the community”.
“Moyross has been synonymous with being known as Ireland’s longest cul-de sac for many years,” he said. “The image of Moyross as a dead end has both physical and metaphorical connotations and this access route which opens Moyross to the surrounding communities is a very significant step in the Regeneration of the area. I would like to put on record the Regeneration Committees appreciation of the work officials from the Office of Regeneration have put into getting this proposal over the line. It would be a huge boost for the Regeneration Process if this project was shovel ready within the next 6 months.”
The proposed Coonagh to Knockalisheen Road Scheme will provide an essential link road to the Moyross area. In the absence of the planned scheme traffic to Moyross is accessed from the Knockalisheen Road and Killeely Road and ends in a cul-de-sac at Delmege Park.
“The Coonagh to Knockalisheen Distributor Road has been identified as an essential element to the strategic transport system for the Limerick – Shannon – Ennis Region,” explained Vincent Murray, Senior Engineer, Limerick City and County Council.
“The proposed route could potentially form Phase 1 of the future Limerick Northern Distributor Road. This future route would run north of Limerick city from the Knockalisheen Road into Co. Clare until it reaches the R463 before travelling southeast to connect with the N7 Dublin Road at Castletroy. This will effective link the N18 to the west of Limerick City to the N7 east of Limerick City via the north of the City and we’re looking forward to construction getting underway.”