Sunday 17 December 2017

Separate routes for road groups


THE JOINT committee comprising communities potentially affected by the proposed Oylegate to Rosslare motorway have decided to stick to their original argument, despite the defection of Barntown and Crossabeg, who feel it has no chance of swaying the National Roads Authority (NRA).

The joint committee now has members representing communities from areas including Ballyhogue, Piercestown, Oylegate, Killurin, Glynn, Murrintown, Trinity and Cleariestown.

They held a meeting in Glynn Hall last Tuesday night to discuss the way forward for the committee after the Barntown and Crossabeg representatives said they were going to fight for their communities on their own terms, which includes pushing particular options from the eight potential routes identified by the NRA which they see as having the least impact on their residents.

Route H is the preferred option in Barntown and Crossabeg right now, though it is one of two (along with route G) which will cause most disruption for communities like Cleariestown and others directly in its path.

However, the remainder of the joint committee has decided to stick together and stick to their guns in terms of their 'do minimum' argument, stating that there is no need for the project. In a statement issued to the Wexford People on Monday, which made no mention of the decision of Barntown and Crossabeg to go it alone, the joint committee said the County Council and NRA's decision to build the stretch of motorway is ' based primarily on road traffic projections which indicate that a major road upgrade is required; traffic predictions that are both grossly inaccurate and out of date'.

The joint committee statement also said that 'this unnecessary project is being pursued with little regard for the Irish taxpayer who will be forced to pay for it at a time when the country is bracing itself for yet another stinging budget and where cutbacks in key services is a daily occurrence'.

Barntown and Crossabeg members feel the 'do minimum' argument is doomed to failure as they are convinced the NRA are fully determined to proceed with the project regardless of any arguments put forward.

Miles Deas, formerly chairman of the joint committee, explained the Barntown position last week, while growing concerns in Crossabeg have also persuaded that committee to put its own parish first.

'Our mandate in Crossabeg is as it always was, which is to oppose all routes through this parish,' said Tom Bermingham. ' That leaves only one route, route H, so that's what we're driving at now.'

'We were against the whole idea of the motorway from day one, but failing the abandonment of the project we'll be doing our best for the people of Crossabeg,' he said.

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