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COUNCIL NEWS

Fibre to the Home Broadband (FTTH) for Rurual Galway

March 08, 2017

Eir presentation on Fibre to the Home technology to be rolled out in County Galway

Road Safety Petition for Safety Measures on rat-runs in Annaghdown/Corrandulla, Claregalway, Cregmore, Carnmore & Kiloughter

June 29, 2016

PLEASE SIGN THE PETITION BY CLICKING ONTO THE LINK ATTACHED

Throughout the Athenry-Oranmore Municipal District, our local by-roads are being used as rat-runs for motorists seeking to avoid traffic on the N17, particularly through the bottleneck in Claregalway village. 

Many of these quiet country roads in Annaghdown/Corrandulla, Claregalway, Cregmore, Killoughter and Carnmore are heavily populated and while our local populations have sympathy with anyone seeking to avoid the scandalous situation which is the bottle-neck in Claregaway village. However, it is unfortunately the case that many vehicles using these local roads travel at excessive speeds which put local residents, children and other road users at significant risk. 

On the 28th June 2016, this culminated in a young mother being struck by a speeding vehicle on one such local road, the L2129 in Tonegurrane, Corrandulla, while leaving her children to a local school bus stop. The offending vehicle was overtaking the school bus, and other traffic which had pulled in behind the bus, to allow the children to board when it struck the mother at speed and sent her over its bonnet, causing her serous injuries. 

This situation cannot be allowed to continue and Galway County Council must immediately implement a safety plan for all local roads in the Athenry-Oranmore area which are being used as rat-runs for traffic travelling to and from Galway City. It is only a matter of time before further serious accidents occur and measures must be taken before fatalities arise.

River Clare/Lough Corrib Flood Relief Works-Timelines & Overview

June 26, 2016

Boradband in Athenry-Oranmore MD Area

May 30, 2016

I have been in touch with both EIR & Imagine regarding fibre broadband in locations around the Municipal District including Annaghdown/Corrandulla, Claregalway, Oranmore and Athenry.

 

Imagine LTE

Many people will have seen the Imagine LTE corriboard signs that have been erected in areas throughout the Municipal District and County over the last few weeks.

Imagine get fibre to a mast in an area ( each area serviced covers about 13km) and connect houses or business directly to the fibre at the mast using a wall or roof mounted box (the box is similar in size to a house alarm). A wire is run from the external box into the home or business and connected to a smaller router device which gives wifi, or direct connect internet. The technology being used is TD-LTE advanced and offers very ‘low latency – 20ms’ . This is very important for gamers, businesses, etc and is much lower than DSL. 

 

The number of customers is limited to 400 per installation to ensure the high level of speed is maintained. If demand exceeds 400, Imagine will look at putting in a second installation.

You can get speeds of up to 70Mb but Imagine are selling this as 30Mb plus service. Customers in North Kildare, for example, are getting speeds of over 60Mb. The service is also a full phone service , so you don’t need any other phone line going to your house or business. The home service gives people 600Gbs per month, which is large (an average film is about 2Gb download and an average user is about 70Gb’s per month if they have a decent connection).

Imagine charge €59.95 per month for the service, which is dearer than current offerings for slower fix line broadband, but realistically the only option currently available in many rural locations. You can check if your area is covered online by using the map at www.imagine.ie

EIR

The information differs from area to area:-

1. Annaghdown/Corrandulla:

The plan for Annaghdown/Corrandulla is a technology called Fibre to the Home which means that Eir willl "...deliver a fibre connection to the home itself, usually the gable wall." Delivery of Fibre to the Home is planned for Eir's 2017-2020 programme of works but they are unable to give information more specific than that in relation to timing as the plans "are subject to change". They state that more than 1,600 homes and businesses will be included in the plan for the area, while the remainder will unfortunately be covered by the Government’s National Broadband Plan, which as we know there is no clarity about in terms of delivery time.

2. Claregalway / Cregmore

Two exchanges are present in Claregalway and in Cregmore respectively, and the Claregalway exchange is already active. 3 cabinets that run off it also have fibre, meaning that nearly 1,000 homes and businesses are already able to access fibre broadband in the area. A fourth cabinet is expected but took longer than the others as access to private land was required. However, I am informated that work has progressed and the homes and businesses connected to that cabinet should be able to place orders before the end of the summer when approximately 30 additional premises will be added to the network. All of the above relates to exchanges and cabinets. Each home/business connected will be run off a copper line that connects to the exchange, therefore exact speeds depend on distance from the cabinet.

For those on the Claregalway exchange that do not benefit from the above, the exchange is included in the rural fibre rollout plan, which will include the fibre to the home technology mentioned for Corrandulla above. Claregalway is in the plans for late 2016, but allowing for unforseen events, it is expected to be delivered by the first quarter of 2017 at the latest.

Work is underway on the Cregmore exchange. Currently, the forecast is for this to be available late in the summer, benefitting more than 200 homes and businesses. However, it is again concerning to note that there is no additional work planned for that exchange thereafter, leaving it to be covered by the National Broadband Plan.

3. Oranmore

Oranmore already has more than 3,000 homes and businesses that can access Eir's fibre network, including those connected to the exchange, plus 15 cabinets. Over 800 homes and businesses will be added by the end of 2016 on the Fibre to the Home Programme. This is also forecast for winter this year, but is earlier in the plan than Claregalway, and is likely to be early winter.

4. Athenry

Athenry has more than 2,000 homes and businesses with fibre already available. This is made up of those directed to the exchange, plus 11 cabinets. The last cabinet became available for order in April of this year. The Fibre to the Home schedule for Athenry is the same as Claregalway (planned for late this year, but may be early next year due to unforeseen circumstances), and includes nearly 800 additional homes and businesses.

A copy of a presentation made recently in Athenry regarding the FTTH technology and rollout is available hereunder.

An Cáislean Nua

May 26, 2016

On the 4th September 1828, a boat carrying 31 persons set sail from Annaghdown Pier en route to a fair in Galway City. It never made it to shore. In more recent times, the boat has been located approximately 100 yards up river from Menlo Pier. Pictures of the boat on the bed of the Corrib have also recently emerged which show it to be in remarkable, if disintegrating, condition given that some 188 years has now passed since it sunk. Trevor Northgate of Anglingcharts.com, the site displaying the photos, commented that:-

"Looking from the stern. The wreck is in very poor condition now, but the transom seems intact. The wreck is just over 10m long,  large enough to accommodate 30 people and a few sheep at a squeeze. It lies in the Corrib River, not far from Bushy Park. She is now disintegrating , but the poor quality of the timber from which she was made is still very evident...This  is the wreck of a large, and old sailing / rowing vessel,  around 35ft long, that has been on the bottom for possibly a couple of hundred years. She has started to collapse into the lakebed, and the flow of water along the shoreline has started to move silt over her. In another 100 years she'll be buried and gone."

 

Local Councillor James Charity has now contacted the Underwater Archaeology Unit of the National Monuments Service in an attempt to salvage the boat before it is completely lost to time. He stated:-

“The tragedy of 1828 is something which every Annaghdown resident becomes aware of at a very young age growing up in the locality. Even now, after all this time, it is an ingrained part of our cultural heritage. An enormous number of families in Annaghdown were affected by the tragedy and the loss of twenty relatives, some of whom were engaged to be married and were subsequently laid to rest in their wedding attire. Obviously, while appreciating how delicate a subject matter the boat and its history is, I am very concerned that such an integral part of our local culture could be lost completely in less than a generation from now. The Galway Sub Aqua Club previously indicated a willingness to raise the boat if they received sufficient support but would require the input of the Underwater Archaeology Unit in the National Monuments Service. I have been in contact with the NMS in order to examine ways to preserve An Cáislean Nua and possibly raise her so that an important part of our local heritage remains for the next generation and ensure the tragedy, like the boat, will not be lost to time.”

Galway Airport Hangers Leased

March 16, 2016

At the monthly meeting of Galway County Council held on the 16th March 2016, it was confirmed that the two hangers at Galway Airport, totaling some 3800 square metres, were to be leased to a film company. Responding to my queries, the Chief Executive confirmed that negotiations with the previous aviation operator were no longer on-going. It appears that this lease signals a firm intention to move away from aviation on the site. While securing a use for the hangers, and with a revenue stream fro the taxpayer, is welcome, I certainly believe that the failure to maintain commercial aviation on the site is a short sigthed decision that wil ultimately be to the detriment of Galway City and County.

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