DCC Notes

Pg 36 incinerator1

The South East Area committee have met twice since NewsFour last reported. There have been a number of issues put to the council and the most pertinent are reported here.

The council reported that the Feasibility Cost Estimate of the planned Dodder Cycle track upgrade is €12m to €15m. The procurement of a design consultant will be commenced in 2014, subject to NTA approval.

A number of issues were brought before the council by all councillors. Councillor Dermot Lacey asked the relevant officers in the council if they will arrange for an improved cleansing rota and level of activity in the Bremen, Kerlogue, Cymric, and Pine Roads adjoining areas of Ringsend as well as an audit conducted of public lighting in those areas. A night inspection of lighting in this area is scheduled to be carried out on Friday 7th November.

Councillor Frank Kennedy asked the City Manager to formulate a traffic policy which addresses the continuous problems of accidents at the junction of Merrion Road with Simmonscourt Road due to the setup of the junction and the lights operations. DCC agreed to assess and report back regarding solutions.

A full update on the state of proposals for part of Sandymount Green to be used as a playground, and the level of public consultation which will take place during this process was also requested by Cllr Kennedy. Public consultation is due to commence in the next few weeks, the outcome of which will inform the conservation plan for Sandymount Green. The provision of a small playground area is just one of a number of possible proposals for the Green.

Councillor Paddy McCartan asked the Chief Executive to monitor the bottle bank adjacent to Aviva Stadium on Lansdowne Road. DCC are to investigate measures for this area.

Councillor Kieran Binchy was concerned about street trees on the following streets where they are obscuring street lights: Park Avenue, Sydney Parade Avenue, Ailesbury Road, Simmonscourt Road, Eglinton Road and Herbert Park Road. The Parks and Landscapes Service are currently working to clear the growth around traffic lights.

Councillor Claire Byrne asked for an update on the Sutton to Sandycove cycle route, and to outline the current obstacles in developing this route. The NTA will be appointing a consultant to prepare a feasibility report for the entire route on behalf of the Local Authorities. A preferred tenderer has been identified and it is anticipated that the feasibility study will commence before the end of November.

Cllr Byrne also asked for an update on plans to improve access for cyclists and pedestrians at the junction of the Grand Canal Cycle / Pedestrian Route and Leeson Street Bridge. The Roads and Traffic Division will be appointing a consultant in early 2015 to identify potential improvement proposals along the entire route, subject to approval from the NTA.

DCC were requested to disseminate what resources are set aside to deal with the clearing of falling leaves, and how much is spent clearing drains blocked by these leaves each autumn. DCC replied that the clearing of falling leaves becomes a priority for the waste management, particularly during the autumn season. It is the Council’s view that it is the responsibility of both householders and DCC every year at this time. Normal street cleaning schedules are generally temporarily suspended in order for DCC to redirect the maximum amount of resources towards dealing with this seasonal problem.

The budget for gully cleaning for 2014 is €922,481. Commercial premises are kindly asked to clear the footpaths in front of their premises of leaves in the same manner that they are responsible for keeping them free of litter. The city council will provide assistance to any premises or person who cleans up falling leaves by providing them with bags and also in the removal of these same bags when full with leaves. The Council also encourages residents to participate in such programmes as the ‘Adopt a Street’ scheme.

Councillor Sonya Stapleton requested DCC to confirm a date for the removal of trees on Bride Street, O’Carroll Villas and Cuffe Street as the residents are awaiting communication on this matter. Tree pruning and removal at the specified locations will be carried out over the winter months, although it is not possible to give a specific date.

Cllr Stapleton also wanted to know if provision was made for single persons when applying for housing if applicant is a step-parent to a child since the child was born. DCC stated that applicants with dependent children who are living with the applicant on a full-time basis, or for whom the applicant or their partner has primary care and control are included on the housing application.

Councillor Mannix Flynn requested the Manager to give an update as to the progress of legislation to deal with ‘Chuggers’ – charity collectors on streets. He was referred to the Charities Act 2009, which is the relevant legislation to deal with this issue.

Cllr Mannix Flynn also requested a full report regarding the Community Gain Fund and financial amount available for community gain in relation to the Poolbeg Incinerator. He wanted to include all procedures as to how this community gain finance is to be awarded and distributed, such as who will administer these grants and what is the geographical spread that is to be included for applicants to these grants.

The City Council is to establish a Community Liaison Committee to liaise between the Council and the local community. The membership of the committee shall comprise of one Independent Chair, three local community representatives, three elected members of the City Council, two officials of DCC and one Facility Operator representative. The Council is in the process of establishing this committee and the Terms of Reference for the committee which will also address the mechanism for disbursement of the Community Gain Fund and the assessment of applications for grants to fund projects. It is the intention of DCC to meet with the councillors in the near future to discuss these issues as part of the process in establishing the committee.

The fund is due to receive approximately €10.3 million over the next three years and will, when in operation, receive a further €1 for each tonne of material accepted at the facility commencing the first year following commissioning of the plant.

Councillor Mannix Flynn requested information on commemoration plans for the 1916 Rising to take place, as certain South East areas were major garrisons. A commemorations sub-committee – Fochoiste na gCuimhneachán – was established in November 2010.

Following the local elections, the SPC has selected a new commemorations sub-committee under the chairmanship of Cllr Vincent Jackson. The new sub-committee was to meet on 12th November to review activities to date and plan activities for the coming years and drive a Dublin City Council programme of events, with the widest possible involvement at community level. The sub-committee and City Council will also facilitate and support, as appropriate, groups/individuals organising commemorative events, at both local and citywide levels. The Council is engaging with national government in relation to the Commemorations and is represented at Assistant Chief Executive level on the national committee.

Councillor Claire Byrne recently put a motion forward requesting the SEA Committee to support the residents of Ringsend, Irishtown, Sandymount and the wider Dublin area in their opposition to the development of the Poolbeg Incinerator, based on their concerns about the social and environmental impacts of the increase in traffic in the area due to the transport of waste to the facility, the type of materials that will be transported and the potential for hazardous and flammable waste materials being transported to the facility and the type of systems in place to monitor and manage this, and asks that the DCC Chief Executive addresses these concerns as a matter of urgency.

DCC reiterated that the Incinerator required planning consent and a waste (now an Industrial Emissions) licence prior to the facility commencing construction, which they restate are now in place.

These consents allow the facility to accept up to 600,000 tonne per annum of non-hazardous municipal and industrial wastes, thus the facility is not licensed to accept or treat hazardous waste. The EPA will put in place a monitoring system for the operational phase of the Dublin Waste to Energy Facility to ensure compliance with the licence granted by them.

All waste collection operators are required to implement appropriate health and safety procedures for the safe collection and transportation of waste. They also noted that the transport of waste to the facility is estimated at an average of approximately nine vehicles per hour.

Compiled by Ferg Hayden