The people of South Dublin are being locked out of a “golden opportunity” to create a new park by Irish Water, according to a Fine Gael TD.
Dublin Rathdown TD Neale Richmond believes the completed reservoir works in Stillorgan provides the opportunity to have a green space in the urban community.
But instead, the empty land will be locked behind a gate, and Deputy Richmond is calling on Irish Water to open access to 15 acres of parkland to the locals.
He believes that the area is missing a green area and the decision by Irish Water to withhold the land from Sandyford locals “simply mind-boggling”.
He said: “The past 18 months of Covid-19 restrictions have highlighted the importance of open, green space in our urban communities for families and residents to avail of.
“Stillorgan Reservoir, which has recently undergone works to create a new covered reservoir, contains 15 acres of parkland which are currently not accessible to the public but could be used to serve communities across Dublin.
“Sandyford has over 5,000 residents in the immediate area and over 40,000 within 5km, with many more to come in the coming years with the development of new housing.
“There are also schools, childcare facilities and over 25,000 employees in the area, many of whom will be returning to the office over the coming months.
“These residents deserve to have access to a park and greenspace where they can take their kids, meet a friend for a coffee or get some exercise.”
Mr Richmond said that there is an opportunity for Irish Water to open up access to the land to the public which will be empty behind a tall fence.
“Irish Water have stated that the decommissioned areas of the reservoir will be landscaped and held for future water services but the reserving of a portion of this land for the community would be a minor trade off that would transform the local area,” he continued.
“A public park in the Stillorgan Reservoir would benefit thousands of people and transform this area of Dublin.
“The benefits would be immense; both in terms of mental and physical health for residents and workers, and it would also bring huge social and economic benefits.
“If this works well, it is something that could be replicated in other reservoirs across the country.
“Irish Water must reconsider this project to reaffirm their commitment to their communities they serve and take this golden opportunity for a new park.”
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