Galway City Council has warned motorists to brace themselves for traffic delays, as children across the city and county return to school this week.
While new infrastructure, including an Urban Traffic Control System has been put in place to tackle Galway’s legendary tailbacks, Director of Services Ciaran Hayes admitted to the Galway Independent this week that unusual August traffic patterns would put a strain on the city road network.
“We expect now that for the first two weeks in September, with the schools opening that we would have quite heavy traffic, particularly in the mornings. The new developments are really helping us but the worst period for traffic is always the second half of August and that’s when we get completely different traffic patterns and traffic movements,” he said.
Mr Hayes said that, while disruption would continue for a number of weeks, the new measures should ensure that delays return to normal towards the end of September.
“Generally, by the third week, traffic movements will start to settle down into the normal patterns. Certainly, we have seen this year that we have been helped by the infrastructural developments that have been put in place over the last 18 months. Between the removal of the roundabouts, the traffic control room and the Seamus Quirke Road, they’ve all had a significant positive impact on traffic flow.”
In the meantime, parents of school-going children and workers in the city are urged to factor some delays into their journey time to minimise the disruption caused.
“We would appeal to drivers and, particularly, parents taking children to school to be mindful of the issues around the school areas and to operate care, courtesy and common sense while on the roads. There is going to be additional traffic and we would ask people to plan their journey and give themselves sufficient times to get to their destination.”