Here is an update of the motions I tabled at the Naas Municipal District meeting that took place on 15 July 2014.
In June, a proposal emerged by a private company to build a set of wind turbines on the hill at Athgarrett, Eadestown (on the Naas-Blessington road). The development was greeted with deep concern amongst the local community and series of public meetings were rapidly organised. I attended and spoke at all of these and have been working closely with the local group (Eadestown Against Spin).
A major set of road works is to commence on the Sallins Road / M7 motorway bridge during the months of July and August. The works are being carried out by the NRA and involve essential maintenance and safety upgrades that are now due.
Traffic Impact: The project will start on August 6th and will run for between 8-10 weeks. For the first two weeks ONLY the bridge will employ a one-way system with traffic flowing from Sallins->Naas but not back from Naas->Sallins. For that two week window, an official detour has been set up via Kill / Straffan though it is expected that local traffic will use one of the many shorter, alternate routes with the detour mainly being taken up with HGVs and bus traffic. After the first two weeks traffic will flow in both directions as normal during day time. The works will go on 24 hours a day and a traffic light system will be occasionally used between the hours of 8pm-6am. Pedestrians will be able to walk across the bridge at all times including the one way fortnight.
Windfarm projects have been the source of much controversy across the Kildare area already and the latest development concerns a proposal to build a set of wind turbines at a site in Eadestown, just outside Naas nearing the Kildare / Wicklow border.
Residents have significant concerns and they have raised these with me. I have tabled a motion for the next full meeting of the County Council to suspend planning applications on such projects until greater finality exists around national and local guidelines.
This proposal came out of the blue really in Eadestown. Residents organised a public meeting in Eadestown GAA Hall, which I attended last Wednesday. There was understandable concern given that the site is pretty much at the heart of Eadestown village on a hill just between the church and the GAA field and very close to many houses and the village centre. There is also a concern that if the project starts here, before long the entire green belt from Ballymore to Kilteel would be spinning.
I am overwhelmed by the support I received in last Friday’s local elections. I would like to say a huge thank you to all the many people involved in the campaign and to everyone who supported me at the polls. With the highest vote in the county it is quite a mandate and I am humbled to have received it. It is a great honour to now formally serve the Naas area and I look forward to getting stuck into the job. Please do not hesitate to contact me on any issue and I look forward to a busy term of office ahead. Thank you.