DCC Notes for February / March 2019

River Dodder and Aviva.
Courtesy Geograph.ie

Compiled by David Prendeville

The South East Area Committee (SEAC) held their most recent monthly meetings on February 11th and March 11th. The following is a compilation of some of the main issues, relevant to the local area, that were raised at the meetings.  

11th February SEAC Notes

Cllr Dermot Lacey (Labour Party) asked if it can be arranged for the railings along Beech Hill park to be painted. He also asked if the railings close to the junction with Beech Hill Drive, where a car crashed into last year, could be repaired. The council responded that: “There is no specific funding allocated to paint the railings here at the present time, however the location can be considered in the context of future budget allocations. The damaged section can be repaired over the next four weeks.”

Cllr Lacey asked the manager if he will have the pavement in the vicinity of the Sandymount Dart Station examined and repaired and upgraded where necessary, given the high volume of, in particular, wheelchair users, at this station. The manager responded that this would be logged in their Asset Management System and that repairs would be made as soon as possible.

Cllr Frank Kennedy (Fianna Fáil) asked for the installation of pedestrian traffic lights or a zebra crossing on Thorncastle Street, Ringsend, to facilitate the safe crossing from one side of Thorncastle Street to the other, in particular for residents of Whelan House and O’Rahilly House. He said: “The traffic has become extremely heavy recently and children and senior citizens cannot safely cross the road. There is a real risk that someone will be knocked down at present.” The council’s response was that it will be listed on the Traffic Advisory Group Agenda for examination and report and a recommendation will be made in due course.

Referring to removal work done at his request in 2015 and 2016, but that hasn’t been done since, Cllr Kennedy asked for a full and comprehensive clean and sweep, to include the removal of all moss and other detritus off the footpaths and road surface of Richelieu Park, Dublin 4. DCC’s response was Waste Management Services had the footpaths and road surface of Richelieu Park swept and cleaned up on the 30th January 2019.

Cllr Chris Andrews (Sinn Féin) raised the question as to whether it can be arranged that residents in Margaret Place, whose entrances are sometimes being blocked by deliveries to the pub, can have parking permits on Bath Avenue. He also asked if the manager could say how many residents in Margaret Place currently hold parking permits on Bath Avenue. The manager responded as such: “Residents can make requests for additional streets on their residents’ parking permits to the Parking Policy & Enforcement Section and these requests will be examined on a case by case basis. Currently, four residents on Margaret Place have Bath Avenue specified on their residents’ parking permits.”

Cllr Claire Byrne (Green Party) asked if action could be taken to prune the trees on St. Mary’s Road. She said: “These trees are very tall and were a hazard in the high winds last year, with branches falling down and one tree almost falling onto a house. Can the manager please come up with a plan to address this issue, without removing the trees?” The manager responded: “The trees on this street were pruned three years ago and would not be considered a priority for general pruning at the present time. Park staff will continue to monitor the trees and will carry out any work, if deemed necessary.”

11th March SEAC Notes

Cllr Lacey brought forward the motion that the manager investigate the possibility of installing self-locking gates at Sandymount Green. A constituent raised the issue of safety in this area, with young children often cycling out from the green on to the main road, unaware. The response was that: “Parks Services does not have an objection in principle to the installation of ‘self-closing’ gates on one or more of the pedestrian gates at Sandymount Green. Although it is recommended that local stakeholders are consulted in regard to the works prior to any changes being implemented.”

Cllr Lacey also put forward a motion, raised by a constituent, relating to traffic lights at a crossing near Donnybrook Church and crossing between Spar and Donna Florists on Donnybrook road which if not rectified, will “cause serious injury.” Detailed in the motion is how the crossing is on a blind-spot and that people who walk out upon the lights immediately turning green, are in danger of being hit by cars and cyclists turning the corner and breaking the lights. Council responded that: “the pedestrian crossing at the junction of Anglesea Road has been monitored during the AM and PM peaks. The existing crossing times and collision times meet the safety requirements as calculated by our maintenance contractors. These safety timings are correct but due to aggressive driver behaviour we have increased the safety times.”  

Cllr Kennedy brought up a motion on an issue that he initially brought up in 2015 but that he says was rejected on the basis of a misunderstanding in 2017, for a pedestrian crossing from one side of the top of Sandymount Avenue to the other (at the T-junction where Sandymount Avenue meets Gilford Road). The response from council was that this area would be listed with the Traffic Advisory Group for examination and report by the Area Engineer. The Councillor will be informed of the outcome in due course.

Cllr Byrne called on the area manager to ensure that the new Tea Rooms in Merrion Square will not use or sell any single-use plastics, and will only serve reusable kitchenware and full combustible or recyclable kitchenware for take-away items. The manager responded: “There are six tea rooms in parks at present and each of the tea room operators have indicated that they are already using a variety of recyclable, biodegradable, and compostable products and are actively working towards eliminating any remaining use and sale of single-use plastics.The selection of an operator for the tea rooms in Merrion Square Park will in part be assessed by their environment policy and waste management plan.“

Cllr Andrews asked if the manager could arrange to have some form of clarity for cars turning right from Bath Avenue onto South Lotts Road? The manager responded that vehicles are legally allowed take a right turn from Bath Avenue onto South Lotts Road. The traffic lights are sequenced for vehicles to perform this manoeuvre once it is safe to do so.

Cllr McCartan (Fine Gael) asked on behalf of a constituent that the manager notify the Garda Siochána of the persistent illegal left turns by motorists from Nutley Lane, Donnybrook onto Nutley Road during the morning rush hour where the restriction applies. The manager said that this request would be raised with the Garda Siochana at the next Traffic Advisory Group Meeting. 

Cllr Kennedy asked for the urgent repair of a badly damaged footpath on Claremont Road, Sandymount, stating that seventeen years ago a resident of Claremont Park fell here and broke her shoulder, yet it remains unfixed to this day. The manager responded that this will be examined and a reply issued to Councillor.

Cllr Kennedy asked the manager to repair the footpaths on Sandymount Road between Tesco and Star of the Sea Church, on both sides of Sandymount Road, but, in particular on the same side as Tesco and the Church, noting that the footpaths are especially poor at the top of Marine Drive. The manager responded that: “This footpath will be considered for inclusion in our next year’s Footpath Reconstruction Works Programme. In the meantime, defects will be put on our works list for repairs to be carried out.”

Cllr Byrne asked the area manager if he would consider widening the footpath at Merrion Row and Lower Baggot Street. Cllr Byrne describes it as being very narrow and difficult for pedestrians, particularly those with buggies or disabilities. The council responded that it would not be possible to reduce either of the two carriageway widths on Merrion Row in order to increase the footpaths width for pedestrians crossing from Merrion Row to Lower Baggot Street. This is to facilitate Dublin Bus vehicles turning from Merrion Row onto Merrion Street Upper.

Cllr Byrne asked the area manager if he will liaise with the Aviva Stadium and other local businesses to work on an improved cleaning plan for the local area during and after the matches and events. Many residents have complained about the increase in litter recently. Response from council was: “A litter warden will visit the commercial premises (convenience stores, take-away premises and public houses primarily) within the locality of the Aviva Stadium to explain their responsibilities under the Bye-Laws for the Prevention and Control of Litter. The Waste Management Department will work with the South East Area Office and other relevant stakeholders including Stadium management and local residents to ensure that post-event cleaning is carried out to the required standard following events.”

Cllr Byrne also asked if the area manager if he will install an exit safety ladder from the river along the Dodder walkway. Cllr Byrne pointed to the fact that there is only one located from the Dodder sea scouts and not another for quite a stretch. Cllr Byrne says this would greatly improve safety for walkers and river users. The council responded that: “This question has been forwarded to the Office of Public Works for comment and a reply will issue to the Councillor when a response is received.”