A year ago, Sinn Féin Councillor Kenneth Flood warned Drogheda Municipal District Council that mayhem would ensue unless there was proper traffic measures put in place to cope with the volume of school traffic. That Mayhem has come to pass.
Ballymakenny College are waiting for their school building to be completed and are currently sharing the Aston Village Educate Together school which has the knock on effect of an increase in the volume of traffic in the area at school times.
Councillor Flood explained “The College pupils start time is 8:30 am and the National School Pupils start time is at 9:00 am to try and alleviate the traffic congestion caused by parents dropping their children to school. But despite the staggering of school start times the traffic congestion has reached unprecedented levels because there is no traffic management system at the junction of Newfoundwell Road and the entrance to Termon Abbey/Aston Village. There are tailbacks of more than a kilometre and it can take 40 minutes or more for parents and residents to exit the estate. This is causing extreme disruption to parents trying to drop their children to schools outside the area or residents just trying to get to work.”
This chaos was not unforeseen. There was a large roundabout in the planning permission for Aston Village but unfortunately the builders were given a waiver by Louth County Council due to Newtown Meadows being planned at that time.
Kenneth Flood has suggested “a mini-roundabout could easily fit that junction to sort out the traffic congestion problems once and for all. I am once again, requesting that a mini-roundabout be put at that junction.”
In the meantime however, “to solve the immediate and urgent traffic congestion I am requesting that timed temporary traffic lights, the ones the council use to control traffic during road works etc, be put in place at that junction until the Ballymakenny College Students take up residence in their new building outside the area.”
Cllr Flood has also contacted the Community Garda requesting them to direct traffic at school times but due to pressures on Gardaí resources, this is not a viable medium or long-term solution.
The Sinn Féin Councillor also contacted the vice-principal of the school to see if school times can be staggered even further and a meeting will be held next week to discuss the problem. “This can not continue, it is a disgrace especially as this chaos was predicted.”
Cllr Flood has gone to the junction (on foot as it’s not viable by car) and videoed the mayhem and posted it to social media. www.facebook.com/kenneth.flood.18?pnref=story