KEEPING YOU UPDATED ON PLANS FOR ORCHARD ROAD DEPOT SITE
Earlier this month, at the Dublin Central Area Committee meeting of Dublin City Council, I sought an update on the status of the plans being prepared by the Housing Department to redevelop the former Depot site on Orchard Road. In doing so, I asked for clarity as to the Council’s current thinking in respect of scale, density and height of any proposed redevelopment; the type of housing being envisaged for the site; the current thinking in respect of permeability in, through and across the site and with adjoining lands; and to provide an indicative timeframe for the preparation of a Part VIII planning application to advance the redevelopment of the site. Michelle Robinson, Senior Executive Officer with the Housing & Development Section of the Council confirmed that a detailed design is currently being worked up by Architects engaged by FOLD Housing for senior citizen housing. These designs will be further assessed by DCC technical teams to determine whether their proposal can move forward to the next stage of development. I understand that the FOLD proposal allows for permeability between Tom Clarke House and the new housing scheme, and the initial indication is that this site may deliver between 30 to 40 homes. Heights have yet to be finalised however the initial sketches suggest that the site may be laid out in four separate blocks with heights ranging from one storey to a potential four/five story building on the Tolka River side. I do not expect a formal planning application to be presented to Councillors until March or April next year.
HELPING MAXIMISE YOUR HOME & LIVING SPACE – How we need to do more!
Over the last two years, I have been working, in my role as Chair of the City Council’s Planning & Urban Form Strategic Policy Committee to address issues surrounding the ability of families to use their attic space as additional habitable accommodation. As a result of the pandemic, more and more people have been and are likely to continue working from home coupled with the fact that sons and daughters are living at home longer, I believe there is a need to enable householders make better use of their attics and allow for loft conversions, etc. An area that I am working on, is to encourage Minister Burke to review and update the Building Regulations that would ensure the Department’s policy to increase density and make sustainable use of urban built up areas can be complied with. I recently wrote to Minister Peter Burke reiterating to him the importance of updating the Building Regulations with regards attic or loft conversions so as to make optimum use of existing buildings and homes to provide further bedrooms or space so that families and householders can live in and work from home in a space that address their needs. Further information is available on this at www.RayMcAdam.com.
CLONLIFFE COLLEGE LANDS REDEVELOPMENT PLANNING APPLICATION
An application seeking planning permission has been lodged with An Bord Pleanála for the redevelopment of the former Clonliffe College lands. This application was submitted by Hines as a Strategic Housing Development under the terms of the Planning & Development (Housing) and Residential Tenancies Act, 2016. It is proposed under this application that 1614 homes be developed as part of a Build to Rent scheme and that the former Clonliffe College lands be restored and accessed by the local community, once again. The proposed development is spread across 22 acres and proposes the retention and restoration of the existing protected structures on the site with the construction of 12 separate new apartment buildings. The apartments will be developed in a series of new buildings combined with the renovation of the historic existing buildings. In total, 322 of the new apartments (20%) will be made available to Dublin City Council for social and affordable housing. The planning application was lodged late last week and An Bord Pleanála is still validating it. Full details of the application are available at www.RayMcAdam.com. Please email me if you have any specific questions or concerns about the proposed development. Local Councillors will shortly meet to discuss the application and contribute to the Chief Executive’s Report which will be submitted to An Bord Pleanála as part of the determination process.
FIXED PENALTY NOTICES TO BE INTRODUCED IN THE CITY TO TACKLE ILLEGAL PARKING
Dublin City Council’s new Pilot Scheme will see Fixed Penalty Notices (fines) being issued on the spot to drivers who park illegally in certain locations. The Scheme, which came into effect on June 1st last and continues for 12 months will complement the existing options for dealing with illegally parked cars of clamping, relocation, and removal to the Pound. Dublin Street Parking Services (DSPS) who manage enforcement on behalf of the Council, focuses on keeping people and traffic moving freely around the city.
While the current options are effective in most cases, there is an ongoing challenge in tackling illegal parking on bus and cycle lanes, short stay illegal parking and footpath parking in particular. The Council needs an additional form of enforcement to keep the city moving. Vehicles illegally parked on a short-term basis can disrupt the flow of traffic and cause problems for pedestrians and cyclists. The City Council has undertaken extensive research with other local authorities in recent months and it is believed that this additional enforcement tool will increase parking compliance in key areas. Parking illegally on footpaths blocks access for the mobility and visually impaired users, for people with buggies and any action which reduces this parking is to be supported.
BALLYBOUGH PRIDE OF PLACE
Massive congratulations to Laura Williams and everyone involved with Ballybough Pride of Place for the phenomenal work that has been and continues to be done across the district. Huge credit is due given how well ye all have the area looking and all the #positivevibes emanating from Ballybough over the last two years, in particular.
LIDL BALLYBOUGH – UPDATE ON PROJECT
As you know, LIDL has advanced plans to redevelop the former Annesley Motors site along Ballybough Road. The application for planning permission was lodged earlier this year. The Planning Department of Dublin City Council has sought additional information on a range of issues from LIDL and I expect that documentation to be submitted shortly. While the planning process is continuing, I understand that LIDL have arranged for some remedial works to be carried out on site. It is hoped that if, and when, planning permission is granted by Dublin City Council, and pending no subsequent appeal to An Bord Pleanála, demolition and construction work can get underway quickly. I will work to keep you updated of progress in respect of this development online at www.RayMcAdam.com.
#NORTHINNERCITY LOCAL COMMUNITY SAFETY PARTNERSHIP ESTABLISHED
Late last year, Justice Minister, Helen McEntee T.D. announced the establishment of the Community Safety Partnership pilot for the North Inner City. This initiative will bring together residents, community representatives, business interests, Councillors, local authorities, and State services such as An Garda Síochána, Tusla and the HSE to devise and implement the Local Community Safety Plans. This initiative will replace the existing Joint Policing Committee, which I chaired between 2014 and 2019. This all-encompassing approach is one I sought to adopt during my chairmanship, and I welcome the fact that Minister McEntee is proceeding with a similar approach to strengthen community policing for our neighbourhoods. The Plans will detail how best the community wants to prevent crime and will reflect community priorities and local safety issues. The goal is to make communities safer for families, residents and businesses. Cormac O’Donnchu has been appointed as the Independent Chair with the first meeting taking place on July 29th next. For more information on the work of the Local Community Safety Partnership and how you can get involved, check out www.RayMcAdam.com.
CLONTARF – CITY CENTRE PROJECT
As you may be aware, Dublin City Council is finalising the proposed Clontarf to City Centre project, which is a cycle and bus project, providing segregated cycling facilities and bus priority infrastructure along a 2.7km route from Clontarf Road at the junction with Alfie Byrne Road, to Amiens Street at the junction with Talbot Street. I have provided a detailed overview of what’s involved in this project and how it is likely to impact on Clonliffe Road & Ballybough households online at http://www.RayMcAdam.com. I urge you to familiarise yourself with the details. The likely big issue here will be the alternative traffic management arrangements which will have to be put in place. While officials involved in the project confirmed to me last week, that restrictions will be put in place “during a majority of the construction stage”, I believe general traffic diversions will be required. However, in meetings I have attended and questions I have put to the team involved, I am not prepared to support traffic diversions that will see increased traffic use of roads like Annesley Place, Poplar Row, Spring Garden Street, Bayview Avenue, Charleville Avenue, Clonmore Road, Clonliffe Avenue, Foster Terrace, Sackville Avenue, for example. As the new Chair of the Dublin Central Committee of Dublin City Council I will work with my colleagues to ensure diversions that are needed are introduced in a way that does not negatively impact upon households in Ballybough and the Clonliffe Road area. All the latest information in respect of this project is available online at www.RayMcAdam.com.
FITZGIBBON STREET GARDA STATION
The re-opening of Fitzgibbon Street Garda Station was committed to by former Taoiseach, Enda Kenny when he launched the Mulvey Report in 2017. Since then, myself, Minister Paschal Donohoe, the Tánaiste, Leo Varadkar T.D. and Fine Gael Justice Ministers have worked with the Office of Public Works and An Garda Siochana to advance the renovation works to transform the old building into a Community Policing Hub fit for the twenty-first century. Justice Minister, Heather Humphreys T.D. informed Minister Donohoe and I this week that the construction works on-site will be complete by August 6th next. Following this, the building will be handed back to An Garda Síochána for fit out and ICT installation. The Garda Commissioner anticipates the station to re-open and the Community Policing Hub to be in situ by October / November.
NORTH-EAST INNER CITY GREENING STRATEGY
Huge work is being done by the Parks Department of Dublin City Council along with the Pride of Place and other groups to advance greening projects across the area. The suicide plot at the junction of Clonliffe Road and Ballybough Road was completed last month and is looking fantastic after the grass was removed and shrub planting taking place. Other similar projects will take place shortly at Croke Villas, Poplar Row and Ballybough House. A contractor has been appointed to assist with the O’Connell’s Secondary School Greening Grant (Outdoor classroom) where a Polytunnel has been installed with Raised beds and benches currently being installed too. All site investigations have been complete with regards the Clonmore Road Residential Street Greening. Concept drawings currently being prepared, and consultation will commence with residents as soon as possible. Phase 2 of the Dorset Street works are due to begin in September. Regular updates are available online at www.RayMcAdam.com.
Fine Gael Councillor - North Inner City
Chair, Urban Form & Planning Strategic Policy Committee