RESIDENTS bordering Cabinteely Park have voiced their disappointment that a proposed high rope adventure centre has been given the green light in the public park, which they say is an unsuitable location for such a project.
The project was approved by council representatives at a recent county council meeting, despite 75% of the 183 submissions received during the public consultation process voicing their opposition to the plans.
Now, local residents surrounding the park are coming together to start a campaign to look at ways to appeal the decision.
Speaking to The Gazette, local resident and campaign supporter, Mark DuBerry, said a number of concerns was raised by residents during the public consultation process, but their views were “dismissed” by council officials.
Outlining their main concerns, he said: “The main concerns are the damage and destruction to the trees in the immediate area – up to 43 trees have been earmarked for destruction in order to facilitate this development.”
Another concern is that it is “right up against” one housing estate, and also that several other developments will be affected by noise. “They are expecting about 100,000 people to visit a year,” he said.
However, a spokesperson for Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council said the figure of 100,000 per year is incorrect, as it is anticipated this level of use would take place “over a five-year period”, and would be controlled by a booking system.
A council spokesperson said councillors considered the manager’s report on the proposal during the July meeting, which “addressed all of the issues that were raised in the 183 submissions received during the public consultation process”, including concerns about the loss of trees in the park.
The spokesperson added the proposal was informed by an arborist report, and the level of tree work to be directly associated with the installation of the high wire adventure course has yet to be determined.
DuBerry said that he is not against such projects, and has seen a lot of them, but he has “never seen one built in a very old local park, and so close to residential houses”.
The fact that it is going to be run in a public park as a commercial venture with the local authority making money from it is another issue.
Asked what can be done now that the project has been approved, he said: “We are looking into that. We, as a group, are actively seeking out an appeal.”
If anyone is interested in getting in touch with campaigners, you can contact DuBerry by emailing [email protected].