Gerry O’Connor: “it’s not like Ratoath went from 500 up to 12,000 in a very short amount of time and then you’re chasing infrastructure.”

Gerry O’Connor is a local Fine Gael Councilor for the Dunshaughlin area currently working on improving the standard of living and facilities in the town.

Why is there a lack of pathways and what is being done to deal with this issue?

The issue comes in relation to pathways is funding… Central Government doesn’t give us funding for footpaths. It comes out of our road paths program… I got from the water tower down to the campus resurfaced.

In our own municipal district… we get €50,000 per annum for footpaths. This year I got €11,000 which will do up parts in Green Anne and parts in Supple Park.

There’s a rural road, and there’s no funding for rural roads for footpaths. There’s now 30 families on it. So, I applied in 2019 for €50,000 for that road… to get a footpath there so the families can walk down into town. I’m told that will happen in 2023. Now I am fighting to get it brought forward earlier, but there’s that many projects and the funding is so scarce. We got the commitment; we got the shareholders to raise the €5,000. It’s sitting in the bank, and that was 2 years from now.

Will there be changes done in the local area to clamp down on speeding?

We’ve a huge speeding issue from People coming in from the Dublin Road although it goes down to 60 at the petrol station, there is a quality bus corridor there as well, and what happens is they are not slowing down and if someone is turning into the willows, they are overtaking them on the bus lane. That road is a regional road, and the national roads authority deals with that. The town limit ends just before Rathill (Industrial Estate) … I want the town limit extended just past the Willows and that will mean the 60km will go past the workhouse. So, you’re going to gradually slow it down from 60 at the workhouse and 40 at the Willows.

We put in a number of traffic calming measures at Hillview to re-align that junction, to stop the cars coming down from Manorlands and flying around towards Grange end. They didn’t even need to change gear so now they have to slow down and make a proper turn.

What new housing units should we expect to see in Dunshaughlin? How will this impact the area?

The Willows will eventually have 1100 houses there. Churchfields has 96.  Where Grange Park is and Cnoc na Tiarnach at Grange End, there is a strategic housing development was approved by Bord Peanala for 230 (or) 240 houses… That’s going to change that access into the town.

Dun rioga went into an SHC in January for 412 and it was not approved… because of a judgement in relation to another SHT over in Stamullen. A traditional review took place when the commission was given, and the judges said that parts of the land had not been zoned for the SHT.

Now all of that planning was catered for and planned in 2001… then the financial crash happened, and all the builders went bust and so they are only coming on stream now. It’s bringing its problems; we’re trying to stay on top of them. First of all, it’s not like Ratoath went from 500 up to 12,000 in a very short amount of time and then you’re chasing infrastructure. We’re trying to get it done as we go along.

Why has there been constant power outages and is the problem being fixed?

The power outages that are happening lately is because there is some issue with Baltrasna. There’s some problem with it and the boards are breaking on a regular basis They’re putting serious money in it to correct and replacing the boards, but we’ve had had a number of outages and some of them are very long outages. As a council, we don’t have any power except the power to represent people, but they are on the case, and it shouldn’t happen.

What happens is, if a farmer cuts a power line, it is blown the whole board and it could be anywhere. Baltrasna serves all the way down to Maystown and it goes all the way down to Ashbourne. It could be anywhere there. Then you have the ones that are planned

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