CONCERNED parents from a Southside estate say they are at their ‘wits end’ due to a lack of a zebra crossing.
Residents living in the Grange Hill estate on the Harold’s Grange Road in Rathfarnham have pleaded with the council to make it safe for them to walk to and from their homes.
“Our estate is effectively a ‘traffic island’, with pedestrians having no choice but to cross a seriously busy road to get anywhere,” resident Muiris O’Riada told Southside People.
“There is physically no other way of getting out of our estate.
“We’re at our wits end dealing with our Council, Councillors and TDs and getting nowhere.
“We keep getting vague responses with no-one accepting accountability.
“If our children want to go to Marley Park they have to cross a very busy road twice.
“What will it take for us to get action?
“The reasons we keep being given for not getting a zebra crossing are infuriating.”
Lisa Carey also lives in the Grange Hill estate and is equally angry.
“Our Residents Association is met with silence, bureaucracy and nonsense!” she said.
“We were told we can’t have traffic calming because the traffic goes too fast but our children are expected to cross without assistance, it’s nonsense!
“We have 39 children living in the estate and they, and we, have an entitlement to be able to cross the road safely.”
Local councillor, Lettie Mc Carthy said she is ‘really disappointed’ at the lack of progress regarding safety issues for the families of Grange Hill.
“Anyone familiar with this road knows exactly how dangerous it is and I would not expect any family to allow their children walk here without a footpath,” she said.
“Planning Departments should have the autonomy to ensure something as basic as a footpath would go in alongside any development on a very busy road but unfortunately, they don’t.
“I believe our Government really need to address the entire issue of developers not completing their granted planning permissions to a Taking In Charge standard in a timely manner.
“At the moment, there appears to be no planning law in place which allows Local Authorities to ensure developments are finished to a high standard, including the upkeep of the next phase while waiting for permission or development to start.
“In my opinion, people who hand over their hard earned money when buying a home should be able to trust the development will be finished to a proper standard and if this isn’t happening,
“Local Authorities and Planning Departments should have the power to intervene.
“We have three TD’s in this area and I am calling on them to introduce legislation which will allow planners to intervene when necessary.”
Green Party Councllor Oisín O’Connor said:
“I have been engaging with the residents in Grange Hill and have raised the issues of road safety on Harold’s Grange Road with senior management in the council.
“The priority is making the environment safe for residents, particularly children and people with mobility issues.
“I have asked for a number of emergency measures to be put in place to make people feel safe walking to and from their homes and to prevent any further incidents.
“I have asked for two raised crossings and two driver feedback signs.
“Both measures would slow down drivers, who are typically travelling far in excess of the 50kph limit of this road.
“I have also asked that this road be designated a 30kph road when the council next review the speed limit bye laws.
“In the meantime I would also appeal to drivers to drive within the posted speed limit, put down their phones and yield to pedestrians who are already crossing the road.”
Southside People contacted Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County and asked them do they have any update on when a zebra crossing is likely to be installed?
A spokesperson for the council replied as follows:
“In February, Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council asked the public to suggest locations for new zebra crossings.
“A number of requests were received for the installation of a Zebra Crossing at Grange Hill Estate, Rathfarnham.
“Council Engineers inspected the site later that month and decided that a zebra crossing would not be suitable at this location for a number of reasons, one being the high speed of vehicles on Harold’s Grange Road.
“The Engineers decided to implement traffic calming measures to reduce vehicle speeds in the area. Traffic calming measures are currently being tendered, and construction will commence in the coming months.
“Once vehicle speeds are reduced, the option of installing a zebra crossing on Harold’s Grange Road will be re-examined.”