Hanafin: Council needs to be ready to progress Thurles inner relief road when opportunity arises

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The delay in progressing the Thurles Inner Relief Road is an ongoing source of frustration for local councillors.

The issue was raised at this months meeting of the County Council by Councillor Seamus Hanafin who said he was disappointed to see the issue is still on the agenda.

For her part Councillor Peggy Ryan said it was like Groundhog Day at every meeting with talk on the Inner Relief Road and that something needs to be done.

Councillor Hanafin says the road is a vital piece of infrastructure that just has to be gotten over the line as it will link the Clongour Road to the Mill Road taking huge pressure off Liberty Square and the current river crossing.

“Now one of the things that’s really important is that we have that ‘shovel ready’ which means that we have everything lined up and that includes all of the land acquisition. Now the Council have been working with landowners over some considerable period of time to finalise the land acquisition and I suppose I’m disappointed that we’re coming to the end of 2023 and we still haven’t all of that completed. And really what I’d be hoping is that every effort will be made to finalise that hopefully before the end of this year if not very early in 2024.”

Councillor Hanafin says not only will it help to ease the major congestion on Liberty Square in the absence of a proper bypass, the Inner Relief Road will have other benefits for Thurles.

“Most of the land has already been acquired – there’s a couple of small parcels left that need to be sorted out. But its hugely important I think for the development of our town and its also hugely important for Mary Immaculate College who’s land bounds on what will be the new road and that will be their main entrance and that’s a very important part of their future plans for the college and its expansion.”