Denis Naughten has described the N61 as “totally inadequate” for the 5 million vehicles that use it every year and called for investment to improve safety along the route.
“The N61 is totally inadequate to meet the volumes of traffic using it at present and it presents a real risk for those who are entering onto or exiting off this road,” stated Denis Naughten. “Many families are being marooned in the middle of the road in cars trying to turn off at junctions.
“This section of road has seen a dramatic increase in traffic volumes since the M6 motorway opened with 10,000 cars/day travelling from this location to Athlone and a further 3,000 vehicles joining this route between Kiltoom and Ganly’s roundabout at the N6/N61 road junction.
“These figures fail to include the large volume of local traffic travelling to and from the school, Hodson Bay Hotel and other local businesses. There are also a number of dangerous locations and particularly busy junctions along the N61 from Roscommon Town to Athlone, which urgently require realignment and traffic calming measures within the vicinity of the junctions themselves.”
Denis Naughten added: “There are also a number of locations along this route which attract large volumes of traffic at irregular times which compound the safety problems along this route including pitches at St. Brigid’s GAA, Hodson Bay Celtic FC, St. Dominick’s GAA and the County soccer grounds in Lecarrow as well as three churches and two schools directly accessing onto the road between Roscommon & Athlone.
“We need to see this road invested in and upgraded to a far higher standard. I’m determined to work with the councillors on Roscommon County Council to ensure Transport Infrastructure Ireland puts investment into this road from Athlone through Roscommon Town and on to Boyle.
“I have made contact with Transport Infrastructure Ireland and I am determined to ensure we get investment to make sure this road is made far safer for those who use it and for the communities who live along it.”