Coralstown (file pic).

Plan for safer road at Coralstown church and school needed

A joined up plan is needed to devise a safety plan and traffic layout for Coralstown church and school, according to Cllr Denis Leonard. The school has been approved for funding under the Safe Routes to School Programme, but Cllr Leonard says more is needed.

Speaking at the March meeting of the Municipal District of Mullingar Kinnegad, he said that at present there are two car parks divided by a busy road. He would like to see the car parks on one side and the road on the other.

Cllr Aoife Davitt said councillors were promised a meeting on site and a pedestrian crossing, and at present there aren’t even road markings. "Do the councillors get a say? Who is running the show? How long is this going to go on?" she demanded.

Cllr John Shaw felt that a lot of improvements could be made at low cost in relation to lighting and road markings that would benefit the community.

Cllr Hazel Smyth, chairperson, urged that the council work with the community, the school and the relevant bodies to ensure that children can get to and from school safely.

Pat Kavanagh, district engineer, said that An Taisce will work with the school and the local authority in implementing the Safe Routes to School Programme, which is funded by the National Transport Authority.

The council will be involved in its delivery and design – which may include a pedestrian crossing and a drop-off area.

Cllr Leonard also called for a "greyway" bicycle path and walkway from Kinnegad to Moate, along the old N6. He said that greenways were fine for slower travellers, but faster cyclists preferred on-road routes and the old N6 would be ideal and would take visitors to villages such as Tyrrellspass, Rochfortbridge and Milltownpass.

Cllr Smyth supported him, and said that move would feed in to the council’s tourism strategy and offer visitors an opportunity to explore our towns and villages as well as "the health aspect".

Mr Kavanagh said the council had €600,000 to spend on former national routes such as the N6 and cycleways will be incorporated into them.