Tuesday, 26 February 2019
Department of Public Expenditure and Reform
Flood Relief Schemes
156. To ask the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the reason the raising of a road was not funded by the OPW as part of a flood relief scheme; the arrangements being put in place to raise the road; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9558/19]
The raising of roads in three areas was proposed as part of the Claregalway Flood Relief Scheme. While it has been possible to carry out this work in two locations (Montiagh South and a further stretch of the Montiagh North Road), it has not been possible to identify any practical working solutions to the difficulties associated with raising the third section of road which provides access for the residents in Gortcloonmore, without putting the existing road at risk of collapse.
Following further discussions, Galway County Council (GCC) agreed to carry out an independent review of the proposed road design at Montiagh North (Gortcloonmore) and to examine potential alternatives to see what level of road raising could be undertaken, without putting the existing road at risk of collapse. GCC has completed this review but unfortunately, it has not been able to identify any practical working solutions to the difficulties associated with raising this road. The Council’s findings were based on looking at a wide range of construction techniques and the results were in line with the original findings of the OPW.
In a further effort to find a solution to this access problem, Galway County Council commissioned Consulting Engineers to complete a report into the possibility of providing an alternative access route - to and from the N84 - for the four residential dwellings in Gortcloonmore as an alternative means of emergency access during a severe flood event. However, the report which was finalised recently, failed to identify a practical alternative route.
The OPW has advised the residents individually of the difficulties as outlined above and of the fact that road raising at Gortcloonmore section of road is being omitted from the Claregalway Flood Relief Scheme as Confirmed. The OPW has also advised the four residential property owners that it is prepared to meet again with their representatives in order to explore any further mitigation measures that might be considered to ameliorate the fact that we are not in a position to complete road raising in Gortcloonmore.