A roundabout may not be appropriate at the junction where traffic lights are currently located at The Mall, a meeting of Clonmel Borough District Council has been told.
Cllr. Michael Murphy had requested that the council would carry out a traffic impact assessment or feasibility study with a view to replacing the traffic lights at The Mall with a roundabout, having regard to the level of congestion on the Davis Road and around The Showgrounds Shopping Centre.
He said that this congestion was likely to increase when work began later this year on the redevelopment of Kickham Barracks, including the provision of a car park.
However, a report from District Engineer Eamon Lonergan stated that a roundabout may not be appropriate due to the potential for the increased queuing of traffic on the road leading to and from the Gas House Bridge. The report stated that roundabouts gave priority to vehicles on the right hand side and to vehicles already on the roundabout.
“The largest volume of traffic flow at this junction is on the Davis Road, which could impact access from the Gas House Bridge leg. Also, roundabouts are less responsive to pedestrians than sequenced traffic lights and this is a busy pedestrian area."
However, Mr. Lonergan added that an assessment of this junction would be conducted should traffic congestion increase.
He also said that the town engineer was reviewing a number of junctions in the town with a view to improving traffic flow, particularly at peak times.“These alterations will be progressed in 2019," he said.
Meanwhile, Cllr. Murphy said he never said that a roundabout was the solution. It could be possible that the traffic lights needed to stay green for longer for traffic travelling from the Davis Road towards the town centre.
He said the area needed to be looked at before the redevelopment of Kickham Barracks began.
Cllr. Pat English agreed that the area needed to be examined because it would be “a black spot” with the additional traffic generated by the Kickham Barracks redevelopment.
Cllr. Siobhan Ambrose said that perhaps the sequence of the traffic lights needed to be altered, as Cllr. Murphy had suggested.