Council may take legal route to plug Castlepark water leaks

300 cubic metres of water are lost through leaks every hour in Castlepark housing estate in Mallow, according to Cork Co. Council which said this week that legal action might have to be taken to release funds to cover the €100,000 cost of repairing the water infrastructure in the estate.

The drain on the town’s water reserves is so big, according to council officials, that the council was forced to take the estate off the usual town water supply and instead link it up to Box Cross in Doneraile.

Speaking at a meeting of the council on Monday, Cllr Melissa Mullane called on the council to take the legal route to sort the problem for once and for all. She added that, while the council had fixed some of the leaks and restored houses in the lower part of the estate to the town’s water reservoir, residents in higher parts of Castlepark were facing additional costs arising from hard water from the Box Cross supply. She added that the only way to rectify this was for the contractor to pay for the work, or else for the bank to release some of the builder’s bond. “What’s the point of a developer putting a bond in place if we can’t release the money to do essential work? Residents feel very let down”, she said. “I want another report on this for the next [council] meeting, and I will continue to raise it until it’s sorted.”

She was supported in her call by Cllr John Paul O’Shea who said the bank should release the bond to allow the leaks to be fixed. “I will be seeking a meeting with Seán Hannigan, who was appointed by AIB nationally to deal with unfinished estates, and I will be urging him to act on this,” he said.

In a report to Monday’s council meeting, Andrew Hind, Senior Planner with Cork Co. Council said that the issue had been com-plicated by the transfer of responsibility for water from the Co. Council to Irish Water, which made it difficult to move forward without an agreement from the new water body. He added that he was sympathetic to the con-cerns of residents of Castlepark, but the process was cumbersome and time-consuming.