Consent to build on land owned by department puts St Mark’s project on hold
By Laura Lyne
CONCERNS have been raised within the community of Springfield as the development of an all-weather pitch for St Mark’s GAA Club and community school has been given a set-back, due to a delay from the Department of Education and Skills (DES).
Despite preparations being completed and funding for the project being made available, work has been unable to begin as the club and school await consent to build on land owned by the DES.
A meeting was held with members of St Marks GAA Club to find a resolution to the delay, with a petition expected to be created in the near future.
Paul Burke, development administrator of St Mark’s Pitch Development told The Echo: “We are being held up at the Department of Education and Skills.
“We have been contacting them since August last year with regard to obtaining their consent to get the boundary wall up to secure the entire parcel of land upon which the development is to be built and obtain their consent to complete the remainder of the development.
“South Dublin County Council have granted us a conditional license to get the boundary wall up on their lands but there is a portion of the wall which is in McGee Park on lands under the Department control.
“The boundary wall will actually make more secure the DES lands and allow us to prepare a section of grassed area for our teams to train on when the council pitches are off due to bad weather.”
As previously reported in The Echo, the development will see a full size all- weather pitch built on lands currently owned by St Mark’s Community School through the Department of Education.
Also included in the plans is a hurling wall/handball alley structure, six floodlights, perimeter fencing, mobile dugouts and all associated works.
The plans have been in the pipeline for over a decade, and were originally granted permission back in December 2008, with an extension of that permission granted to the club in March 2014 for a further five years.
Paul continued: “We have contacted Roadstone who are kindly donating all of the blocks for the wall and we have funding to get the boundary wall and railings erected.
“This is a community facility which will not only benefit the GAA club but will provide first class training and playing facilities for the community as a whole.”
A spokesperson for the Department of Education and Skills said: “I can confirm that the Department of Education and Skills has received correspondence from St Marks GAA club in this matter. This correspondence is currently under consideration and a response will issue in due course.”