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  • Businesses fear flood risk if village footbridge goes ahead

    Author Maurice Garvey

    PLANS to build a footbridge in Lucan village are likely to be scrapped over fears it could present a flood risk.Lucan village park 4
    The footbridge was set to be located over a “canalised section of river” between Griffeen Bridge and Vesey Bridge, included in a Part 8 proposal by South Dublin County Council.
    This forms part of a €7 million investment by the council for a village initiative scheme countywide.
    Plans for Lucan village include a major works upgrade at Main Street and at Lucan Bridge.
    Fine Gael councillor William Lavelle, says flood risks surrounding the proposed footbridge were raised by local businesses, and the threat was further identified by officials from the Office of Public Works (OPW) and council architects, prior to the plans going on public display.
    Lucan village suffered from flash floods in 2000 – which led to more than €5 million being invested in flood prevention measures, including the heightening of walls at the river.
    Cllr Lavelle said: “I attended a consultation where I was advised by council architects conducting a flood risk assessment. Businesses were concerned primarily with making a gap in the bridge wall (to facilitate the footbridge). Opening up the gap would put them at risk.”
    Whilst an initial supporter of the footbridge plan, Cllr Lavelle is happy to “leave it out” after a “scientific and evidence-based assessment” was conducted.
    “The consultation process continues,” said Cllr Lavelle.
    “I expect a formal recommendation to be forwarded at the Lucan area meeting first, and councillors will have the final say at the full council meeting.”
    Works for Main Street, Lucan, include a new village plaza, raised pedestrian crossing, and alterations to paving, kerbing, car-parking, trees and public lighting.
    Improved entrances are in the pipeline for Lucan Bridge and Watery Lane, along with new steps to the weir promenade.
    Eddie Taaffe, Director of Land Use Planning and Transportation, South Dublin County Council, said: “The council is currently considering the proposed footbridge in Lucan as part of the village enhancement works. The council is reviewing the design of the bridge and will ensure that it will not impede the capacity of the Griffeen River nor will it detract from the existing flood defence walls in the area.
    “However, given the issues raised, it may not be possible to construct the bridge as currently envisaged and an alternative means of access to the amenity area will then be examined.”
    The plans and particulars can be viewed at www.sdcc.ie. Written submissions or observations may be made in writing no later than May 6.

  • Homeless family forced to seek shelter in A&E

    Author Mary Dennehy

    A COUPLE from Tallaght have been forced to find shelter in Tallaght Hospital’s emergency department, where they’ve sat all night with their two-year-old son because they have no place to sleep. Homeless Family  01
    Nadine Heffernan (21), her partner Patrick Dunne (25) and their two-year-old son Kayden have been on the council’s housing list for 18 months, during which time they were staying with a family member and more recently on the couches of friends.
    Nadine told The Echo that some nights when they can’t locate a couch to sleep on, they have been forced to bring their two-year-old into Tallaght Hospital’s A&E department – where the family go to find shelter.
    Nadine said: “We have been attending South Dublin County Council’s homeless unit and even though the staff have been very nice to us, they can’t do anything to help – there are no beds available anywhere.
    “This week, we were told by a staff member to cancel any welfare payments that we were on – which would allow us to legitimately go onto the homeless list [if a person is registered homeless with no fixed abode, they cannot avail of certain social welfare payments and allowances].
    “We cancelled Patrick’s weekly payment on Tuesday [confirmation of which The Echo has seen] but when we went back to the council, we were told that they still had nothing – so, at that point we had no roof over our heads or money coming in.”
    Nadine added: “The three of us were staying in my mam’s boxroom for a while and some friends and family members have been really kind and are letting us sleep on couches – but this is really confusing for our son.
    “There is no stability in his life except for his crèche in Jobstown, which we bring him to everyday.
    “He loves it but after crèche finishes at 12 o’clock, he’s brought to the council offices or into The Square – we have nowhere else to go.
    “If the weather’s good, we bring him to the park – this helps to keep him grounded.
    “Over the weekend though, we couldn’t find anywhere to sleep, so we had no option but to bring our son into Tallaght Hospital’s A&E and sit quietly with him while he got some sleep.”
    Nadine and Patrick told The Echo that they are meeting families in similar situations every day.
    Patrick said: “We’re not looking for much, we just need a place to put our heads down for a couple of nights and are happy to stay in emergency accommodation.
    “Our lives are unbelievably hard at the minute, we have nowhere to cook, to wash, to sleep – we’re desperate.
    “Every day is spent trying to find somewhere to sleep that night and with so many people homeless at the moment, it’s hard to see a better life for the hundreds of families in the same boat.”
    South Dublin County Council did not reply to The Echo’s questions.
    However, they did confirm that as of March 31, 266 housing applicants were included on the council’s Homeless Register, all of whom are currently placed into Temporary Emergency Accommodation, Supported Temporary Accommodation, Private Emergency Accommodation, aftercare or women’s refuge.

  • Residents fear for ‘marshland’ with proposed housing project

    Author Maurice Garvey

    RESIDENTS fear plans for a housing development in Cherry Orchard Park will destroy a “marshland” that they have transformed into a source of community pride.
    Cooperative housing body Nabco have received government funding for the prCherry Orchard Pkoject to construct 72 homes for social housing at Cherry Orchard Park.
    Plans for the housing development were vehemently objected to by residents when Nabco initially applied for planning permission in 2007.
    Despite planning permission being granted by Dublin City Council at the time, Nabco couldn’t proceed due to the downturn in the economy.
    Locals took ownership of the park in 2013, after resident Eddie Fitzpatrick established a Stone Soup Project – planting flowerbeds and memorial trees, whilst granite was donated for a communal grotto.
    The voluntary project has seen positive co-operation between young and old residents, transforming the site into a picturesque local amenity.
    Residents that The Echo spoke to in Orchard Lawns this week, say they are not against housing but feel the area is lacking vital amenities, and a social housing development on their doorstep will create further anti-social problems.
    Matt Kelly, a member of the Stone Soup Project, said: “Vandalism in the park has died down since the group started because there is nothing but respect for the work that is being carried out. Young lads often help out with the digging and planting.
    “Communication rather than confrontation is key. Some councillors are jumping on the housing issue for votes, but they need to take into account the needs of the whole community. We hope the council relent – otherwise we’ll be looking at concrete.”
    Nabco were granted an extension of duration to the planning application in 2013.
    A Nabco spokesperson didn’t reply to The Echo at the time of going to print.
    A Dublin City Council spokes-person confirmed that funding is in place for the development, and that Nabco will be tendering out for construction.
    Sinn Féin councillor Daithí Doolan said residents have “genuine concerns” that must be addressed in a “face-to-face meeting with the council and Nabco.”
    Cllr Doolan said: “I have tabled a motion for the Area Committee (to) ensure there will be a comprehensive, negotiated community gain resulting from building in Cherry Orchard.
    “Cherry Orchard must see an overall improvement in quality of life. This is not about more houses with less services. Services must be an integral part of any housing plan. Communities should not be just about bricks and mortar, but about people who live in them. It is about planning and building homes with adequate services to meet the needs of a growing population.”
    Residents are holding an open public meeting at Cherry Orchard Park today (Thursday, April 16) at 7pm.

  • Two local properties on market for €10,000,000

    Author Lynda O'Donoghue Donnelly

    TWO prominent local sites – both with development potential – have gone on the market for a sum of almost €10 million.Clondalkin-site-for-sale---Elmfield-Aerial highres
    A site in Clondalkin village, close to The Mill Shopping Centre, has been zoned as a Town Centre and has provisions for residential development.
    Mark Forrest, of BNP Paribas Real Estate, is handling the Private Treaty sale and told The Echo that site is an “exciting” prospect for future development.
    Town Centre zoning allows for retails units, including major sales outlets, warehouses, offices, petrol-filling stations and restaurants.
    Mr Forrest said: “With dual access off the Nangor and Ninth Lock Road, and benefitting from town centre zoning, we believe this site offers an excellent proposition to create an exciting mixed-use development.
    “A purchaser may also look to develop part of the site into residential use to mirror a number of adjoining high-density apartment schemes.”
    The 5.9 acre site is being sold on the instructions of the receiver Luke Charleton of EY and has a guide price of €3 million.
    The well-known Spawell Complex in Templeogue has also been put on the market and is being sold by Dessie Kilkenny and John Swarbrigg of Savills on the instructions of Grant Thornton as Receivers for a guide price of €6.5 million.
    The leisure and retail complex is made up of an 18-hole par three golf course, two-storey indoor 48-bay driving range, two squash courts and astro-turf pitches, as well as D’Arcy McGee’s Pub, a Gymboree and shops.
    There are currently 12 tenants in the complex with a contracted income
    of approximately €604,516 per annum and the area is
    zoned Objective F.
    There is currently full planning permission on the Spawell site for the construction of a two-storey, over-basement leisure centre, a five-storey 149-bedroom hotel over a basement of 10,204sq.m. and 579 car-parking spaces. The permission was granted in 2010 and recently extended until April 2020.
    John Swarbrigg, Associate of Development Land at Savills Ireland, said: “While the existing zoning objective may not be conducive to facilitate any meaningful development at present, the existing planning permission does set a positive precedence, particularly in relation to any leisure-related uses.”
    Both sales are expected to move quickly.