Traffic Calming

Concerns are often raised regarding the speed that some cars travel not only through our estates but through Johnstown.

Children play outside and many parents ask their Resident Groups to obtain road signs and even speed bumps as the ultimate measure to stop inconsiderate and dangerous drivers. From delivery vans to neighbours or visitors we have all taken a second look at cars travelling too fast but what can we do to stop this.

Road Signs

New speed signs for Johnstown Wood were erected some months ago to reflect the change in residential speed limit to 30km/h.

Unfortunately most Estates have not been taken in charge by the council and therefore don't have any signs. Whilst waiting for the Council to take possession, and have some signs, the Bailis Downs Residents came up with some suggestions to grab the attention of those who drive to quickly within the Estate.

Speed Reduction Devices

Residents don't own the roads within estates and have no permission to go ahead and install anything. The opinions from officials in the past has consistently been that speed ramps are often unnecessary, costly to install, carry an insurance risk and are ultimately a point of contention with motorists.

There are a variety of designs and not all span the length of the road.

Once you start where do you stop? There are places where devices have been installed such as within Athlumney Wood.

"Initially we had one or two very angry residents who complained that the ramps will damage their cars. If you don't slow down then of course they could but that's up to them and the whole point of these ramps. Some drivers of course don't care about their speed or their cars and drive too fast over them and through the estate. Without them it would certainly be worse."

Athlumney Wood Residents Association.

The Emergency services unofficially commented that they dislike anything that does not assist them in their urgent journeys but they believed that they are effective at reducing speeds and increasing both vehicle and pedestrian safety.

Some Motorists will argue that they cause damage to suspension, tracking and tyres. Ultimately your car must be fit for the road and sufficiently maintained. The car manufacturers design all cars for the road ahead and normal wear and tear, corrosion, your style of driving and speed all factor into whether your car could be damaged by bumps, ramps or even pot holes.

Johnstown Main Roads

Metges Road is not a motorway but outside of rush hour there are some persistent drivers making life dangerous on our main roads.

The road leading from the roundabout up to the schools had ramps installed and these appear to have the desired affect. 

Speed table on the school approach road

The pedestrian crossing is also a raised ramp although there are no warning signs to tell motorists. 

Pedestrian raised crossing

Raised crossing closer to the school entrance

Should we see more of these?

A new petition has been set up to gather support from Residents in the hope that a united community will urge the Council to implement some changes.
We asked the petition author, and concerned Johnstown Resident, Peter Haynes to tell us more about the problem and his view on possible solutions:

"The Metges Road which currently runs through Johnstown in County Meath is becoming increasingly dangerous due to the speed in which many motorists travel on the route. Within the last two years alone there have already been a number of serious collisions on this road meaning fatalities are inevitable unless something is done.

As a home owner in Johnstown, I am committed to seeing further traffic calming measures introduced as the existing measures are not having the desired effect. Having already discussed this issue with a number of Councillors representing the Navan municipal district in 2016, I am now attempting to gather further local support by petitioning residents to demand that these traffic calming measures be introduced without delay.

Some alternative traffic calming measures that I believe would not go far enough are traffic lights because they can be too easily broken by speeding road users, mobile speed cameras require manual resources that are not also available, and concrete islands in the road can be dangerous when visibility is poor such as in foggy conditions or darkness and have been a contributory factor in fatal road collisions in the past.

I believe speed ramps are the most effective and safest method of slowing down traffic. If the correct design of speed ramps are installed and motorists drive over them at a sensible and controlled speed, then damage to the vehicle can be avoided and wear and tear minimalised. I would be suggesting placing a speed ramp at three locations along the Metges Road in order to maximise impact. These locations are at Chestnut Lawn, Johnstown Peoples’ Park, and Cois Glaisin.

I am asking for people to please sign and share the petition which I will deliver to Meath County Council."

What's your view on the speed of cars outside of rush hour? Do we need to act?

There are various ramp designs that have different impact on vehicles and their speed. However we've all passed our driving tests so these really should not be necessary. To ask for the Garda to host speed traps would be a temporary measure whereas we need longer term solutions.

Whilst researching this subject this image in particular caught my eye. Although highly impractical to maintain it might be more effective for those infrequent visitors of Johnstown.

Would you drive slowly if you saw this.

What's going to happen?

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