KNOW WHERE YOU STAND ON GREENING STONEYBATTER

During the summer, in my July ‘Stoneybatter Matters’ newsletter, I shared with you a brief update on plans for the creation of a Stoneybatter Greening Strategy. This follows on from work I’ve been doing for past eighteen months to secure the agreement of the City Council to prepare, develop and implement such an approach in Stoneybatter. 

 

Through my role as your local Councillor and Chairman of the Urban Form & Planning Strategic Policy Committee, I will work to keep you fully updated of developments with regards Greening Stoneybatter, the projects involved and how best you can take part in the initiative. 

  

Keep an eye out for posters locally and the dedicated website established by Dublin City Council at www.dublincity.ie/GreeningStoneybatter.

WHAT IS THE BACKGROUND TO THIS STRATEGY?

The preparation of a Greening Strategy for Stoneybatter follows on from two previous greening strategies for the city; The Liberties conducted in 2014 and more recently the North East Inner City (NEIC) in 2019. These strategies were developed following a study that looked at population density of the city and the access to parks and green routes. This study highlighted the significant lack of under provision of high-quality green space in these areas compounded by the fact that many households live in apartments and small row houses with little or no private green spaces. These strategies identified several streetscape and open space improvement projects to help build robust greening infrastructure in these neighbourhoods. The benefits of these projects are enormous, supporting these neighbourhoods to become more resilient, healthy and attractive; by mitigating localised flooding, improving air quality, providing a home for wildlife, creating recreational and amenity spaces that encourage active living, community activities and positive civic life.

WHAT DOES DUBLIN CITY COUNCIL WANT TO ACHIEVE WITH THIS STRATEGY? 

As Chairman of the Council’s Urban Form & Planning Strategic Policy Committee, I want the Council to develop greening strategies for every neighbourhood. Developing and implementing a coordinated strategy rather than individual one-off projects, I believe, is a better way design and undertake initiatives to enhance our green infrastructure across the city. ‘Greening Stoneybatter’ is line with the City Development Plan, the Biodiversity Action Plan, the Tree Strategy and the recently adopted Dublin Climate Change Action Plan. 

HOW CAN YOU GET INVOLVED IN THIS STRATEGY?

The overriding objective for the Parks and Landscape Services Section of Dublin City Council is to ensure that this Strategy is developed through a collaborative approach with individual residents, youth and community groups, local residents’ associations. Ultimately, it is those of us living here in Stoneybatter that best know what it is that should form part of our Greening Strategy. An initial consultative event took place last month. I couldn’t attend due to my taking paternity leave, following the birth of my son. I understand that the event was very well attended with many suggestions and ideas already being floated. Posters will be erected locally, and information will be circulated online and social media, so keep an eye on the various Stoneybatter-related pages on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.

Design Workshops

• Part 1: October 21st, 6.30 – 8pm.

Meeting Point: School Hall, Stanhope Street Primary new school building, Manor Street entrance.

We will outline the process, the project parameters and what you need to do to submit an idea for greening in your area.

 

• Part 2: November 9th, 10am–1pm. 

Meeting Point: Aughrim Street Scout Group, 42 Ben Edair Road.

Developing ideas for greening

 

Mapping walks – what is & what could be

• Field Study 1 – Trees: October 26th, 10 – 12 am

Meeting Point: Stoneybatter Defibrillator, Civic Green Space outside Kavanaghs. 

Introduction to Tree identification and mapping in your neighbourhood. Join to learn about tree species identification and discuss what tree species could be on your street with DCC tree officer Ludovic Beaumont and Landscape Architects Gareth Toolan & Suzanne O’Connell.

 

• Field Study 2 – Habitats: November 16th. 

To cater for population growth, there has been a dramatic change in our urban landscape that has led to significant habitat loss and species decline.

 

It would be a brilliant opportunity for you to take part in a habitat mapping walk with Ecologists Mary Tubridy and Betsy Hickey on November 16th to map current habitats and develop ideas for new habitat creation. Habitats could be different types of grasslands, wetlands, shrubberies and woodlands of all sizes.

 

Posted in Arbour Hill, Grangegorman, Montpelier, North Circular Road, Stoneybatter | Leave a comment

TRY A TRADE EVENT FOR FEMALES – 24th of October 2019

TUB Female Trades.JPG

 

 

What is Try A Trade?

Do you like working with your hands? Have you thought about doing an apprenticeship? Are you a young woman between the ages of 16 – 24 years old?

If you answered ‘Yes’ to any of the above then TU Dublin’s Access to Apprenticeship ‘Try A Trade’ event could appeal to you.

This event provides interested young women with an opportunity to ‘have a go’ at craft based apprenticeships. The ‘Try A Trade’ event is free!

The activities are interactive, informative and offer interested participants access to some of the basic skills involved in Plumbing and Woodcraft apprenticeships.

The ‘Try a Trade’ event will:

  • Offer an engaging hands-on experience.
  • Provide information on career paths in craft apprenticeships.
  • Encourage participants to appreciate that skill education and training offers real choices for the future.
  • Allow participants to meet and talk with trade professionals.
  • Provide information on TU Dublin’s innovative Access to Apprenticeship Programme.

Below are the details of the event and refreshments will be included on the day:

Venue: TU Dublin City Campus – Linenhall Henrietta Pl, Northside, Dublin, D07 Y4C0

Date: Thursday 24th October Time: 9.30 a.m. – 1.30 p.m.

For further information or to register for a place please email or phone Therese Fitzgerald on (086) 013 6965 /accesstoapprenticeship@TUDublin.ie

Posted in Arbour Hill, Ballybough, Broadstone, Church Street, City Centre, Clonliffe Road, Constitution Hill, East Wall, Grangegorman, Markets, Montpelier, North Circular Road, North Strand, North Wall, Phibsborough, Quays, Rathdown Road, Smithfield, Stoneybatter, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

KNOW WHERE YOU STAND ON THE FUTURE OF O’DEVANEY GARDENS

Throughout the last four years, I have regularly updated you on the progress being made to ensure new homes are built in O’Devaney Gardens. In July 2018, actual construction work on the first 56 PUBLIC homes began. This building work is advancing well and is on schedule to be completed next year.

Separately, plans to build 769 new owner-occupier, more public and affordable homes on the rest of the O’Devaney Gardens lands have reached a stage where a draft development plan with a contractor has been agreed. For that development plan to be implemented, Councillors must vote to approve it and that vote is scheduled for October 7th next in City Hall. 

I will be VOTING to ADOPT this draft development plan. I have detailed my rationale for supporting the building of 824 new homes below. There has been much inaccurate and false information circulated about these plans. I want to clarify the situation for you and provide you with the information Councillors have received so that you know what exactly it is that Councillors will be voting on. 

As always, if there is ever anything where I can be of help, please contact me by phone, text or email. 

Best Wishes, 

Ray

  • WHAT DEVELOPMENT IS PLANNED FOR O’DEVANEY GARDENS?
    In January 2017, Dublin City Councillors agreed to revise the 2010 Master Plan which had set out how the O’Devaney Gardens lands would be developed by the Council in partnership with Government. The changes agreed by a majority of Councillors representing a variety of political parties and independents include:
    • The building of homes, of which 50% will be owner-occupier, 30% public housing with the remaining 20%, a mix of affordable purchase and rental.  
      The redevelopment will take place in partnership through the establishment of a Development Agreement (Plan) between Dublin City Council, Government and a Private Developer or Developers. 
  • Dublin City Council established a Public Procurement Process to ascertain the level of interest from private developers and contractors to build and fund this redevelopment. A preferred bidder has now been identified and a draft Development Plan has been reached with regards the redevelopment of the remaining lands within O’Devaney Gardens.
  • WHAT IS CONTAINED IN THE DRAFT DEVELOPMENT PLAN FOR O’DEVANEY GARDENS?
    The draft Development Plan agreed between Dublin City Council and Bartra Capital Property Group provides for the construction of 769 homes in addition to the 56 houses already being built. These homes will be built in a sustainable mixed tenure, including public housing that will continue to be in the ownership of Dublin City Council, homes that can be bought through an affordable purchase scheme and others that will be owner-occupier. The tenure mix of these homes will be:
     
    • 8x 2 Bedroom Houses
    • 40x 3 Bedroom Houses
    • 222x 1 Bedroom Apartments
    • 439x 2 Bedroom Apartments
    • 59x 3 Bedroom Apartments
       
  • Dublin City Council will continue to have enhanced controls over the redevelopment, including input into heights, densities of the draft development plan along with restrictions of apartment typologies and tenure. That means NO Studio apartments, NO Shared accommodation and NO Student accommodation complexes will be constructed if this plan is adopted. Furthermore, Bartra Capital Property Group, on the adoption of this Development Plan will have no more than six months to submit a full planning application to An Bord Pleanala under the Planning and Development (Housing) and Residential Tenancies Act 2016. Other provisions of the draft Development Plan include:
    • No design difference between the three tenure types. 
      Discount on the Public and Affordable homes from the market price. 
      Local Employment clause ensuring that a minimum of 10% of workers on site are local. 
      192 (+56) homes will be Public Housing under the control of Dublin City Council. 
      165 homes will be available for purchase through an Affordable Housing Scheme. 
      411 homes will be available for purchase on only 22% of the available lands in O’Devaney Gardens. 
      New local amenities including Public Park, Public playground, Creche, Community Space and a Community Campus on Infirmary Road (something I have worked on with the co-Chair of the Consultative Forum). 
    IS THE AFFORDABLE HOUSING REALLY AFFORDABLE?
    The short answer is YES. To show you how, let me give you some examples. 
    Example 1:
    Eilis and Cieran
    are a couple with a joint income of €50,000 and are endeavouring to purchase one of the 3x Bedroom Houses worth between €300,000 and €320,000 in O’Devaney Gardens under the affordable purchase scheme. They have a deposit of €31,000 and have successfully applied for a €279,000 loan under the Government’s Rebuilding Ireland Home Loan Scheme. This will mean they have monthly mortgage repayments of €1195 as part of a 30-year deal with a fixed interest rate of 2.5%. This repayment programme represents 32.98% of their net income. These mortgage repayments would amount to €1155 less than the average D7 rent, as of September 20th, 2019, for a similar sized property. 
    Example 2:
    Anthony
    is a single person with an income of €45,000 seeking to purchase a one 1x Bedroom Apartment worth between €240,000 and €250,000 in O’Devaney Gardens under the affordable purchase scheme. Anthony has a deposit of €24,000 and has successfully applied for a loan under the Government’s Rebuilding Ireland Home Loan Scheme. This means he will have monthly mortgage repayments of €946 as part of a 30-year deal with a fixed interest rate of 2.5%. This repayment programme represents 33.23% of his net income. This compares with an average monthly D7 rent of €1608, as of September 20th, 2019. 
    In providing these examples, I wanted to show that both couples and single person applicants under the Government’s successful and much sought Rebuilding Ireland Home Loan Scheme can purchase homes in the redeveloped O’Devaney Gardens given that the 165 affordable units will be set at a fixed price. This element of the redevelopment means that those people who do not qualify for Public Housing with the City Council or have enough means to purchase a home independently can do so in an area they already live in, an area that has been designated as one of the ‘coolest places in the world to live’. 
    WHAT’S NEXT?
    Dublin City Councillors will have the opportunity to vote on October 7th next on whether this draft Development Plan for O’Devaney Gardens is adopted. Some Councillors have stated that this Plan represents a privatisation of public lands. This is not the case. The Council is not selling the site and is NOT GIVING AWAY PUBLIC LANDS. Rather, by voting for this Plan, the Council will formally enter a comprehensive development plan to deliver what Councillors voted for in January 2017. Ultimately, when the homes are built, ownership will revert to the purchasers of these properties, including the owner-occupier and those 165 affordable homes. The actual transfer of title will take place in phases in line with construction and in with the Development Plan which ensures control and oversight of the development at all times. 
    Finally….
    I will VOTE in support of the draft Development Plan that will see, in total, 824 homes built on the former O’Devaney Gardens lands.
    If this Plan is rejected by Councillors, only works on the 56 homes will continue. There is NO PLAN B to build homes on the rest of the O’Devaney Gardens lands. We cannot afford another lost decade to provide new and better housing in O’Devaney Gardens. 
    Posted in Arbour Hill, Church Street, City Centre, Constitution Hill, Dublin City Council, Fine Gael, Grangegorman, Housing, Markets, Montpelier, North Circular Road, Planning, Quays, Rathdown Road, Smithfield, Stoneybatter | Leave a comment

    NEIC COMMUNITY GRANTS AVAILABLE – SEPTEMBER 2019

    The NEIC Programme Implementation Board has approved €100,000 funding for an NEIC Community Grant Scheme 2019 which will be administered by the NEIC Programme Office in 2 rounds. This Scheme will focus on two overarching themes.

    Theme No. 1 ‘Brooms and Blooms’ – clean-up and enhance your street

    Theme No. 2 Active Living, Recreation and Wellbeing

    The purpose of the Scheme is to financially support North East Inner City communities in delivering their own projects at local level where it can be demonstrated that such projects will contribute to the achievement of the objectives of the NEIC PIB under one or both themes which have been identified as priority.

    Timeframe:

    Round 1 was run in April 2019 and Round 2 is now open for applications.

    Round 1 :

    Completed. Following the assessment process 24 applications were approved by the Programme Implementation Board for funding of a total amount of €46,232. A balance of €53,768 remains to be allocated under Round 2.

    Round 2 :

    Completed applications will be accepted from Monday 2nd September 2019 until Monday 30th September 2019 (4:00 pm).

    Applications received after the closing date will not be accepted.

    Posted in Ballybough, City Centre, Clonliffe Road, Dublin City Council, Fine Gael, North Wall | Leave a comment

    €95,000 for youth projects here in North Inner City – McAdam

    Youth organisations in the North Inner City are set to benefit from €95,962 in funding, a Fine Gael Councillor has said.

    Councillor McAdam said: “I am delighted that organisations like An Siól, East Wall North Port Youth Development Group, SWAN among others will benefit from this new funding.

    “These youth organisations have essential programmes supporting young people to develop skills, gain new experiences and build self-confidence.

    “The Youth Officer in the City of Dublin Education and Training Board does great work in supporting local youth projects and assist in the design of the scheme and administration of funding.

    “As in previous years I am confident these grants will assist in improving the quality of the services to the benefit of young people involved.

    “The national youth organisations provide exceptional engagement for the children and young people who are members nationwide.

    “The provision of these grants underpins this Governments continued commitment to enhance the quality of youth services which add such value to our communities.”

    Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Katherine Zappone stated that: “Youth Officers play an essential role in the co-ordination of youth service for my Department. They act as a contact point in communities and play an important support role to the providers of youth services.”

    “In 2019 we are investing a total of €63.6m in current and capital funding in clubs, services and supports for young people.”

    Posted in Arbour Hill, Ballybough, Church Street, City Centre, Clonliffe Road, Constitution Hill, East Wall, Fine Gael, Grangegorman, Markets, Montpelier, North Circular Road, North Strand, North Wall, Quays, Rathdown Road, Smithfield, Stoneybatter | Leave a comment

    Central Bank of Ireland – Bridging the Gap Initiative- Opportunities for NEIC Residents

    This initiative will be launched in September 2019. The key objective of this initiative is to develop employment and employability in the local community through supporting four individuals in progressing their education, and their employment opportunities, through: 

    An enriching and challenging course in Rathmines College from 12 September 2019 to 29 May 2020 where candidates will undertake a fully funded QQI Level 5 Course

    • Career development guidance from the Central Bank, with the allocation of a mentor for the duration of the programme
    • A two-week unpaid placement, as part of the programme of study, in the Central Bank where candidates can apply the knowledge and skills acquired from their course (this occurs in February)
    • A paid summer internship in the Central Bank from June until August 2020 to gain experience of working in a corporate environment.
    • Shortlisting for interview in to the 2020/2021 Central Bank Scholarship Programme

    The Rathmines courses for study, and their appropriate links, are listed below;

    ¾     Certificate in Business and Finance (QQI Level 5)

    ¾     Certificate in Business and IT Studies (QQI Level 5)

    ¾     Certificate in Accountancy Business and Taxation (QQI Level 5)

    The qualifying criteria for entry will be that the Rathmines Level 5 course would represent the highest level of the person’s academic qualifications to date. Also, just to confirm that this is not an initiative that is solely for young people, there is no age requirement on this.

    The applications process will be live on the Central Bank’s website from August 9th. Candidates will be applying via the careers portal of the Central Bank’s website and I will be in touch again closer to the date to share the link.

    Any questions please let me know. If you would like a member of the team to come to present to any of your groups we would be more than happy to do so.

    Posted in Ballybough, Clonliffe Road, East Wall, North Strand, North Wall | Leave a comment

    Church Road Re-Surfacing Works – July 2019

    I want to advise you that Dublin City Council will be carrying out the re-surfacing of the stretch of Church Road between the Blythe Avenue and Killane Road.

    These works will result in the temporary closure of Church Road between Blythe Avenue and Killane Road. Prior to their beginning, Dublin City Council will communicate with households as to temporary parking arrangements for the duration of the works period.

    CHURCH ROAD
    The City Council envisages that the works associated with the re-surfacing of Church Road will take place between 7am and 7pm each day from Monday, July 22nd to Monday, July 29th.

    Officials have assured me that pedestrian and local access will be maintained for the duration of these works.

    Posted in Dublin City Council, East Wall | Leave a comment