Green Party’s Dublin Bay Bill

{mosimage}Revitalisation of Dublin Bay should include Sutton-to-Sandycove cycleway and more water amenities

The Green Party has promised to revitalise Dublin Bay in an Oireachtas
bill that will soon go before the Dáil. The Party has proposed to
create a new authority to manage and protect the Bay and ensure that
Dubliners and tourists alike can benefit fully from the valuable
resource, which spans from Howth head to Dalkey island.

Launching the bill in Dún Laoghaire today, Green Party Environment spokesperson Ciarán Cuffe TD said: "Dublin Bay is a fantastic resource that has come under increasing development pressure in recent years. It is vital for us to ensure that future development is properly planned, and that water-related sports and leisure facilities are developed and provided for. Although Dublin Bay is getting cleaner, no one authority is in charge of what’s happening. The baths around the bay have been ignored and now lie derelict, and decisions on their future are being left to developers. We need vision, and that’s why we are proposing to create an authority empowered to conceive a master-plan for the conservation as well as the sustainable development of this valuable resource. We would task the authority to create a coastal zone management plan to ensure that flora and fauna are protected.

Green Party Dublin North East candidate Cllr David Healy said: "The authority will ensure that the Sutton to Sandycove cycleway is fast-tracked, in consulatation with local residents, and designed to the highest standards. Already the sections of the route which are in better condition are thronged on weekends and evenings. Ensuring quality design standards all along the route will open this linear park up the city and further stimulate the growing demand for active transport. People will walk or cycle much further and much more often in a pleasant environment.  In our overly sedentary society, the Sutton to Sandycove cycleway will significantly contribute to improving the health of Dublin’s citizens."

Green Party Dublin-North Central candidate Cllr Bronwen Maher said: "The Authority would also look at re-opening the sea water baths around the bay. The Clontarf Baths for example could become a major feature along the cycleway.  Sea-water swimming is an extremely popular activity all year round and these baths would be a great addition to Dublin. Dollymount Strand and Bull Island need a fresh approach too, and we are proposing that cars be removed from the beach. The number of cars on the beach in summer is now a safety issue. Last week-end’s ‘boy racer’ epidemic, which continued throughout the Easter bank holiday, shows that we cannot allow indiscriminate usage by cars any longer. As part of this plan we would also implement increased public transport between Clontarf DART station, the baths and onto Dollymount Strand via the causeway."

Green Party Dublin Central candidate Patricia McKenna said: "We must develop the south docks and Poolbeg peninsula as high amenity residential areas as the first phase of Dublin Port’s eventual removal from the city centre. The docklands area has huge potential to be developed for sustainable, family-friendly accommodation which will provide good quality homes for many generations of Dubliners. The Green Party also sees the Dublin Port Company’s application to infill a further 52 acres in the Bay as unnecessary and inadvisable. The port area has expanded enough and we must ensure that any development in the Port and along the Bay must take into consideration environmental, amenity and community interests, as well as commercial usage."

Green Party Chairman and Dublin-South East candidate John Gormley TD said: "We want to ensure that proposals for high-rise development aren’t treated in a piecemeal fashion, and that there is better co-ordination between councils in Fingal, Dublin City and Dún Laoghaire/Rathdown, as well as the various agencies that control both the shoreline and the bay. We also need to end the discharge of raw sewage into the Bay, while resolving the capacity and odour problems at the Ringsend plant."

The Party set out the following points to come under the remit of a new Dublin Bay Authority. These include:

  • Regenerating the public baths around the Bay such as Dún Laoghaire, Blackrock and Clontarf
  • Fast-tracking the proposed Sutton to Sandycove cycleway, which has been stuck at planning stage for nearly five years
  • Providing greater access to the water for anglers, swimmers and boat users
  • Protecting low-lying coastal areas from the risks of flooding due to climate change or natural events
  • Developing the south docks and Poolpeg peninsula as high amenity residential areas as the first phase of Dublin Port’s eventual removal from the city centre
  • Creation of a Marine Park initially in the area between Sandycove and the East Pier in Dún Laoghaire
  • Extending the Luas into Poolbeg Peninsula
  • Utilising the heated water from the Poolbeg power plants to provide district heating for apartments along the Liffey
  • Ending the discharge of raw sewage into the Bay from the small number of remaining outlets while also resolving the capacity and odour problems at the Ringsend Plant
  • Phasing out the parking of cars on the beaches of Bull Island