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Construction work at the junction of Castle Street and Cornmarket Street to allow for the change in direction of the traffic.
Construction work at the junction of Castle Street and Cornmarket Street to allow for the change in direction of the traffic.
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Traffic flow works on Castle Street to begin shortly

WORKS to reverse the traffic flow on Castle Street are to begin in the coming weeks.

The change is one of the central elements of the first phase of the City Centre Movement Strategy, an ambitious plan which will revamp the entire traffic flow of Cork city centre, and will see Castle Street reversed from its current westbound flow to an eastbound flow.

Later elements of the plan include the partial ban of private traffic on Patrick Street, though there are a number of crucial infrastructural changes that are required before this takes place.

Engineers working on the project for Cork City Council have indicated that this change is unlikely to become a reality until next year, but a series of public lighting, footpath upgrades, diversions and signage will be seen over the coming months.

In all, preparatory works are expected to take approximately twelve months to complete, meaning that motorists won't have to re-route their journeys just yet.

Over the coming weeks, engineers will make the first steps toward diverting traffic to the city's quays.

A report from Cork City Council stated, "Works will also be progressing shortly at Daunt Square, Castle St and Liberty St for a period of circa two weeks. These are necessary for the agreed flow changes on Castle St.

"Thereafter the main area of focus for the contractor in the period ahead will be the route from Prospect Row along Grenville Place towards Christy Ring Bridge. 

"The primary works in these areas will take a number of weeks to complete and are necessary to support the routing of inbound flows towards the quays."

A view of Castle Street from 1972.
A view of Castle Street from 1972.
Works are already advancing elsewhere in the city, with new public lighting being installed on North Main Street.

Last week, the South Mall was partially closed to traffic, while contractors McGinty & O'Shea have also started work at Grenville Place, resulting in the closure of a stretch of road from the junction of Henry Street to the junction of Grattan Street.

This closure expected to remain in place until early 2018.

Later stages of the plans will focus on reverting MacCurtain Street to a two-way system as well as significant interventions along the quays to improve the flow of public and private transport.