Google+ Running in Cork, Ireland: Ongoing development works at the Ballincollig Regional Park

Friday, March 25, 2016

Ongoing development works at the Ballincollig Regional Park

Back in May of 2015, I had a post up about the proposed new paths that were going to be developed in Ballincollig Regional Park. It was announced in Feb of 2016 that they were going to start.

The map below shows the area concerned. As well as building new bridges and widening existing paths, the Yellow/Orange area will be a new path.

Work is now well underway on the new bridge as seen below. They are replacing the narrow bridge with one that is a lot wider.

The area below shows the start of the 'Orange line'. The view on the left is the way it used to look and on the right, the new path is being created.

The view below shows the another area on the 'Orange' line. What it use to look like and the new wide path.

The 'Yellow' part of the new path will run behind the football pitch as shown below...

The photo below shows the new path being built. A layer of hardcore goes down first as a base and then a smooth tarmac surface will be put down on it.

This is a photo taken on Thurs 24th March. They have just started on the section by the football pitch (where the orange and yellow lines meet).

All of this work should be finished sometime in April of 2016.

So you might well ask, what is the significance of this? Other than a new path and a wider bridge, does it really matter?

This is why it is might be significant. Up to now, the western and eastern ends of the Ballincollig Regional Park have been connected by narrow twisting paths. Fine for individuals walking or running but too narrow and uneven for any sort of organised run.

Ballincollig AC helped to develop a 3km route at the western end of the park as outlined in this post from April 2015. If a 5km race was going to held there up to now, it involved doing roughly two loops which wasn't great when the paths and bridges were narrow.

With the new pathway, it means that the option of using the eastern end of the park can be used. For example, this is a potential 5k route that I put together...

It uses the existing 3km route as well as the new paths and eastern part of the park as an out and back section. Another option might be to start at the eastern end and take in the loop on the western end...

There may well be other options but what it does show is that there is now a viable 5k route contained within Ballincollig Regional Park itself.

As well as having the potential of holding 5k races there, it does raise the possibility of maybe a weekly 5k parkrun? There are certainly enough runners locally and from Cork City to justify it.

Thanks to Vincent Florish for the photos


Anonymous said...

Great Idea in theory but will the parking gremlins that have plagued Tramore park surface here too?

Colette said...

As tramore valley parkrun is a non runner hopfully parkrun may consider using ballincollig as an option .it certainly looks to be a good option when the works are complete.Cork city council would want to get their act together with regards to tramore valley

Anonymous said...

Unless Cork City Council are planning on adding several hundred car parking spaces nearby then there is no hope of having a Park Run there. I've been down there quite a bit and it is very difficult to get parking at times as things are.

The only alternative is if Park Run add a facility whereby you book your slot in advance (and scan before the race) so that they can cap the numbers at some of their races where space is tight. Either way, you wouldn't even manage an extra 50 people attending there on a Saturday morning, so a Park Run is sadly out of the question for the foreseeable future in my opinion.

Anonymous said...

This is perfect for a parkrun. It would be well placed to serve and surrounding areas the city and Cork County Council seem to have their act together if the number of events in the county are anything to go by. There is plenty of public parking down at west end of the park. At the east end - maybe the GAA club could help out there. There's always the shopping centres in the town centre as well - there's probably a nice place there to go for a coffee after the run who wouldn't mind the business. City council just don't seem to have the will to sort out the problems with Tramore Valley, so off to the County we go!

John Kissane said...

Few comments about parkrun, the ethos is to remove all barriers that might stop people taking part in a weekly healthy social activity. Hence it's free, inclusive, non-competitive, generally held in easily accessible parks & do not need registration i.e. you can decide on a Sat morning to show up & run.

Ballincollig would indeed be a really nice park to have an event. Events don't happen by magic however so if anyone is interested in getting involved in starting one in the regional park, please do get in touch with parkrun via the website - My understanding is that there have been a few people in touch already from the town.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps also a parkrun here might mean less people for Tramore Park - meaning there might be a hope of that being resurrected? I do hope a parkrun is set up within easy reach of the city and suburbs, even though it's not something I would go to very often because of work. I just think it would be a great thing for running in Cork and is probably one of the best ways to get and keep people interested in our sport.