Hi, there! — Welcome to the fourteenth edition of my monthly newsletter to keep you up to date on my work for Cork City North East.
This month we have motions on a HVG restrictions on Dublin Hill, how delays with An Bord Pleanála are affecting infrastructure projects, and questions about bringing vacant homes back into use. I’ve also included updates on the delivery of transport projects in Glanmire, a new community park on the Lower Glanmire Road/Summer Hill, and new visusalisations of plans for BusConnects Cork.
Please make sure to share this newsletter with your friends and neighbours in the ward. If ever there’s anything you want to get in touch about, particularly comments or feedback on local issues, feel welcome to email me any time at email@example.com.
p.s. Use this link to share this newsletter with your neighbours ... oliver.ie/newsletter
Motions and notions
Every month, each councillor can submit up to four motions to Cork City Council and ask two formal questions of the Chief Executive. One of these questions is asked at the Local Area Committee and must be about local operational matters.
Before the deadline each month, I meet with my local group, the Cork City North Greens and we agree motions and questions for the month ahead. We call this our “motions and notions” meeting :-)
If you have ideas or suggestions for a motion, or have a question you want asked, just let me know!
Or join the Cork City North Greens ... my.greenparty.ie/join
“To ask the Chief Executive for an update on progress to take properties out of ‘void’ this year?”
My question for the Local Area Committee will be:
“To ask the Chief Executive if there is a plan to improve the pedestrian amenity walk between Burke’s Hill and New Inn school, and for a looped walk of the area?”
“That Cork City Council supports removing sale or refurbishment as reasons to end a tenancy, where there is a risk of homelessness, and will write to the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage requesting he immediately progresses legislation to this effect.”
“That Cork City Council is very concerned that delays in An Bord Pleanála are affecting the delivery of infrastructure projects; including timely decisions on Compulsory Purchase Orders and risks to projects such as the Cork Area Commuter Rail programme in meeting deadlines for European and other funding opportunities; and will write to the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage and the Minister for Transport on the matter.”
“That Cork City Council will place HVG restrictions between the IDA on Dublin Hill and Blackpool village, and/or install appropriate warning signs at the IDA on Dublin Hill warning HGV drivers of the height restrictions at the railway bridge ahead.”
“That Cork City Council will commemorate the anniversary of the killing of Palestinian-American journalist, Shireen Abu Akleh, by progressing our policy agreed on 26 October 2021 to build networks with a city in Palestine; re-affirming the solidarity that already exists between the people of Cork and the people of Palestine; and will forward this message to the Minister for Foreign Affairs and the Mission of the State of Palestine in Dublin.”
Timeline for Glanmire projects
Over the next two to three years, €50m is planned to be spent in Glanmire transforming walking, cycling and public transport in the area. That will benefit everyone in Glanmire — including people who need to travel by car by providing alternatives to those who can use other means and freeing up congestion.
These projects show the commitment to delivering better transport options for people living in Glanmire.
The works around Glanmire village are nearing completion. They’ll provide pedestrian and cycle routes from Ballinglanna to Glanmire village and to Coláiste an Phiarsaigh, as well as the first phase of the upgrade of the Dunkettle Road.
Next, the Hazelwood junction will be upgraded with pedestrian crossings. Consultants are also working on the detailed design of a greenway from John O’Callaghan Park through Riverstown to Glanmire Community College. The tender for that is expected towards the end of the year and Phase 2 will connect with Glanmire village.
Alongside the infrastructure that’s being put in place will be new public transport routes beginning from 2024 with the roll-out of the new city bus network. That will connect Glanmire directly to Mayfield and to the city centre along an extended 208 service.
Progress on community park
In April, I received an update from senior officials in Cork City Council on the creation of a new community park on the Lower Glanmire Road and Summer Hill.
Residents of the area have been looking for a strip of land under a footbridge from Clifton Terrace to be transferred from CIÉ to Cork City Council. The community of the area have developed a proposal to create a community park on the lands.
At last month’s meeting of Cork City Council, officials confirmed to me that CIÉ will consider a long-term lease of the land for it to be developed as a community park. The lands contain existing “burdens” that must be retained, including advertising hoardings on the site, the railway tunnel underneath, as well as rights of way.
However, that these “burdens” are being examined is a sign that the legal steps involved in agreeing a lease between CIÉ and Cork City Council is underway.
The community involved already has experience in improving the Railway Park on Grattan Hill and creating a new community garden at St Luke’s. Given the absence of amenity space in the area and the very long history of significant littering when the site is vacant, I think the benefits will outweigh any burdens that come with the land.
Visualisations of BusConnects Cork plans
New visualisations of the updated plans for BusConnects Cork are available and I’ve linked to these below. These are of the Sustainable Transport Corridors that will deliver bus priority measures and improved walking and cycling infrastructure across the city.
Three of the eleven routes are in the North East ward. These are:
Mayfield to city centre (via Old Youghal Road and St Luke’s Cross)
These projects are also opportunities for other local improvements alongside the transport plans.
An urban architect has been contracted design improved public realm at St Luke’s Cross, Dillon’s Cross and Blackpool village. On the Lower Glanmire Road, the plans include a new boardwalk of the river and a new linear park on Horgan’s Quay.
The revised proposals have really taken feedback on board. That’s the fruit of hard work by residents groups working together with the BusConnects Cork team to hammer out solutions that work for everyone.
The most significant changes are in the vicinity of Summer Hill and Ballyhooly Road. These will see a reduction in through-traffic of residential areas during peak hours. That’s something people living there have wanted for a long time and now is their opportunity.
The next phase will concentrate on Colmcille Avenue, where there’s already a very engaged local group. The BusConnects team have committed to working through new designs with residents and businesses there. I would be very confident that a revised design can be found. The experience from the St Luke’s area in the first round of consultation has shown how that’s possible.
The ultimate goal is to ensure that busses run on time and that people have alternatives to the private car. The city is expected to grow by 60% in 20 years and the North East ward is earmarked to be a major growth area. Planning ahead now is essential so that there’s not 60% more cars on the road when that happens.
In the news…
Calls for rules around dog fouling fines to change
No dog fouling fines have been issued so far this year in Cork City. Green Party City Cllr Oliver Moran says there needs to be a new approach taken.
96fm News, Monday, 24 April
Call to reallocate city streets for public and low-carbon transport
Green Party councillor Oliver Moran said streets need to be reallocated from private cars and be put to use for public transport, walking, cycling, and other low-carbon modes of transport.
Echo, Thursday, 20 April
Councillor welcomes confirmation disused city site will be subject to new tax
Green Party councillor Oliver Moran has received confirmation that no 1 Brian Boru St has been included in the city’s final map of the tax. The site has been empty for at least 14 years.
Echo, Wednesday, 5 April
Keep in touch
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Have a great month!
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