DART Underground Oral Hearing Submission – An Bord Pleanála

An Bord Pleanála,                                                                               Councillor Cieran Perry 
64 Marlborough Street,                                                                       Members Room
Dublin 1                                                                                               City Hall  
                                                                                                             Dublin 2

For the attention of An Bord Pleanála,    

                                                              
I wish to make a submission in relation to the above listed matter.


As a city councillor I am aware of and share concerns voiced by residents relating to the Dart underground proposal. These concerns have been expressed throughout the North Inner City constituency and elsewhere.


Residents in the East Wall, North Wall, North Strand and Ossory Road areas will suffer enormous difficulties during the construction phase of the project, and to a lesser extent during the operation phase.  I believe that the project is important to the city, and it cannot be completed without a certain level of disruption. However, it is essential that this is kept to an absolute minimum, and measures to provide the utmost of protection for residents are conditioned into the Bords decision.

  • Residents must be provided with protection to minimise the impact from Noise, Dirt, Dust, vibrations and light pollution.
  • It is essential that mitigation measures, coupled with clear monitoring procedures are included. A clearly defined procedure for reporting and the addressing of all breaches of conditions must be provided.
  • A traffic management plan is of extreme importance, and should aim to remove such traffic from residential communities completely. A traffic plan should operate within the spirit of the HGV strategy operated by Dublin City Council.
  • A parking plan for construction phase workers is necessary to avoid increasing on street parking on already congested residential streets.

The sound barriers erected throughout East Wall have proven effective, but may need to be increased to provide extra reduction in the operational phase. The use of such barriers should be extended to the North Strand side of the track, and also to other areas, North Wall, Ossory Road etc that do not currently benefit from this protection.  If there are reasons why these barriers are not effective at certain locations an alternative protection must be considered.


The quality of landscaping and railing used in East Wall is a marked improvement on what is provided elsewhere, and should be offered at other locations, most obviously along Stoney Road, in consultation with, and as agreed with existing residents.
As a city councillor, I was present at a presentation on the project at City Hall, and also attended the public display in the Sean O’Casey centre. I am aware from residents that they are dissatisfied at the level of consultation that has taken place. There are concerns regarding transparency issues, and at the commitment of Iarnrod Eireann to a genuine engagement. There is a genuine sense of betrayal that important changes to the proposal were first noted in the mass media.


A liaison committee, with representatives from the affected communities, Iarnrod Eireann, the contractors (and enforcement agencies if requested) should be established to address the ongoing construction issues that will affect residents.
Residents in East Wall will suffer a major impact due to the relocation of the bridge on West Road. The possibility of an alternative re-alignment that would not necessitate this should be examined. If an alternative is not feasible, then the responsibility lies with Iarnrod Eireann to demonstrate this conclusively.


In closing, I wish to highlight the need for an oral hearing relating to this proposal. There are very major issues of concern, the scale of the project is enormous (as are the potential impacts) and I believe there is no other way to satisfactorily address these.


Find enclosed the required fee of 50 euro.


Yours,

Cllr. Cieran Perry