Municipal District: 22 January 2021
Motion: That the council outlines all scenarios under which a Transport Strategy for Celbridge and Leixlip area would be started in the first half of 2021.
Report: Kildare County Councils Planning Directorate has asked the Roads and Transport Directorate to develop transport strategies associated with various Local Area Plans (LAP’s). These are orientated around the Planning Directorate’s programme for the year. The Roads, Transportation and Public Safety Directorate will need to complete those strategies required to inform the LAP’s before starting any further work.
Discussion and outcome: The members welcomed the report but expressed their frustration as this issue has been raised for years. Celbridge and Leixlip were to be considered but Celbridge as a priority and a special case due to the following reasons.
- Highest population density in the county.
- Celbridge has a high number of commuters.
- The train station is not centrally located.
- The bus service in Celbridge is over subscribed.
- There is inadequate cycling infrastructure.
- It could take 45 minutes to get from one end of the town to the other.
- Traffic congestion, which will again become an issue when we exit Covid-19 restrictions.
- The urgent need to support climate action
The members called on Ms Barrett to explain the options and clarify if resources were a barrier so they could assist. Ms. C. Barrett understood the members frustration This work is being carried out by a team of two people that do not exclusively work on transport strategy. Ms Barrett is trying to adequately manage available limited resources.
Transport strategies must be done in advance of Local Area Plans (LAPs) but must be done in the order in which LAPs are expiring. This is a requirement of the new Planning Regulators Office that now means all other LAPs, that have expiry dates before the Celbridge Leixlip LAP, have to be prioritised. It was noted that even if Traffic Management plans are contracted out to consultants, there is still a resource requirement to manage the work with the consultants and co-ordinate interaction with almost all Council Departments.
Ms. Barrett noted that she would be meeting the Planning Department to further discuss the work plan for transport strategies and would update the members.
Resolved on the proposal of Councillor Liston, seconded by Councillor Neville and agreed by the members that District Manager to revert to members on the prioritisation of transport strategies following consultation with Planning Department the report be noted.
Municipal District Meeting Friday, 19 February 2021 update:
Councillor Liston asked if there was any update in relation to this item. Ms C. Barrett advised Maynooth and Newbridge would be progressed during 2021, but not Celbridge or Leixlip due to the requirements of the Local Area Plans (LAP) Schedule.
Councillor Liston inquired what the rationale was behind the current consultation portal and could more information be provided on the portal for the Celbridge to Hazelhatch Link Road Route Corridor Options. Ms C Barrett advised any questions in relation to this could be directed to the project team who would answer Councillors Liston’s question directly.