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Dublin Port project raises concerns

Tuesday, 17 December 2019 | 00:00

A business group in Dublin’s Docklands has questioned whether a €320m project by Dublin Port Company (DPC) to double its capacity is in the interests of businesses and residents.

The Docklands Business Forum is expected to raise concerns about the proposed major development of port infrastructure at an oral hearing of An Bord Pleanála later today, into an application by DPC for planning permission for the second phase of its Masterplan 2040.

The project seeks a 15-year permission for phased development works on a 165-hectare site, including a new roll-on/roll-off jetty catering for vessels up to 240m, and the redevelopment of a little-used oil berth for a deep water container berth.

Other elements include a consolidation of passenger terminal buildings and the creation of a “heritage zone” at the eastern end of the port, which will include a new viewing structure and small amphitheatre, accessible from a new 4km greenway.

DPC said its masterplan provides for Dublin Port reaching its ultimate capacity by 2040 without the need for any further infill of Dublin Bay.

However, the Docklands Business Forum — which has more than 100 members, representing 35,000 employees — said the continued location of the port in the city centre is an unresolved issue for many people.

In a written submission to An Bord Pleanála, its chief executive, Alan Robinson, said the board needed to consider the wider consequences for the city’s sustainability for businesses and residents.

Mr Robinson said it was an objective of Dublin City Council to promote residential development and attract people to live in the city centre, including families.

“This objective seems incompatible with the strain on urban infrastructure that the development will cause,” said Mr Robinson.

He said cities such as Barcelona, Bremen, Copenhagen, Amsterdam, Oslo, London, and Cape Town had all moved their ports in the past two decades to “liberate” land to create beautiful new living spaces.

The Docklands Business Forum welcomed the plan for a heritage zone but also questioned whether it would attract the footfall needed to make it a success.
Source: Irish Examiner

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