Residents bitterly disappointed in planners’ failure to take on daa

by Rose Barrett
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Monday last saw another public meeting called in relation to low flying planes from the new runway at Dublin Airport which residents claim are causing serious noise and health impacts.  

The meeting was attended by approximately 215 people including the Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth, Roderic O’Gorman (GP) and Fingal’s Minister of State at the Department of Rural & Community Development, Joe O’Brien (GP); SF Deputies Louise O’Reilly, Paul Donnelly and Darren O’Rourke (Meath/SF spokesperson on Transport) along with Duncan Smith (Lab). Minister for Housing, Darragh O’Brien (FF) sent his apologies.

As there was a council meeting hosted on Monday night, Cllrs Cathal Boland (Ind), Ann Graves (SF) and Ian Carey (GP) attended late; SF Cllrs Aisling O’Neill and Joe Bonner (Ashbourne LEA, Meath CC) also attended.

With standing room only, Deputy Paul Donnelly (SF) stated the main concerns voiced were in relation to the distress caused by the new flight paths from Dublin’s north runway – residents as far as Ashbourne now being impacted.

“The residents have their own evidence from noise monitors that the noise on the new flight measures is way above the 62Bd experienced by those in the direct flight path and have the highest noise amelioration measures,” he said.

“They have met with the transport committee who have agreed to come out to the area and experience the noise pollution in place since February.”

He noted there was deep concern expressed on the night as to the impartiality of the  Aircraft Noise Competent Authority (ANCA) to monitor the noise and to protect the environment and residents. Fingal County Council were accused of ‘dragging their heels in relation to information of meetings and communications between FCC, ANCA and the daa.

Cllr Ann Graves who attended after the council meeting stated: “It appears to me that FCC  won’t take on the ‘big boys’ – the daa and the OPR; the council knows the former can afford a long and costly court process. FCC needs to clamp down, and need to enforce the planning conditions as granted to the daa!”

Mick O’Rourke, Chair St Margaret’s the Ward Residents Association stated the consensus from Monday’s meeting that the daa made only very minor changes to flight paths this year, and are still in breach of relative planning conditions (2007).

“The planning stipulated that flights from the north runway should be flying out directly westwards but they are still diverging north immediately upon take off, flying so low – often less than a 1,000 feet over homes that have not been insulated or sound proofed in any way against the noise,” he said.

He noted the change in flight paths has brought planes directly over Kilscoskan National School causing regular interruption to classes and outdoor activities.

Deputies Darren O’Rourke and Duncan Smith each relayed information from the residents meeting with a transport committee in the Dail on March 1. “Their hands, they feel, are largely tied but they committed to keep putting the pressure on e Minister for Transport, Eamon Ryan (GP), added Mr O’Rourke.”

Dublin’s new north runway which opened last year

He noted a number of communities across south Meath and North county Dublin have come on board with St Margaret’s as their areas are also impacted.

“We have requested An Bord Pleanála to present an oral hearing. We hope we can present international experts on the detrimental noise, health and other related matters. We feel very let down by the daa in that when the new north runway opened with great hype and positivity, there was no mention nor alert to residents of the diverging flight paths, and the negative consequences we are experiencing.”

Recently a motion in relation to the daa being in breach of their planning, proposed by Cllr Jimmy Guerin (Ind), Angela Donnelly (SF) and Ann Graves (SF) passed unanimously in council chamber. FCC confirmed that on March 2 last, it issued two new enforcement letters to the daa in relation to its failure to comply with the 2007 planning conditions in relation to the north runway.

On Tuesday last, a spokesperson for FCC stated: “Following the opening of the new North Runway at Dublin Airport, the council has received a number of complaints relating to its operation. On the back of that, our planning enforcement team began to look into the issue and a warning letter was subsequently issued to the daa. Since that time, there has been an ongoing investigation, with further information related to the runway usage currently being reviewed.”

See previous similar article: https://dublingazette.com//dublinlocalmatters/residents-anger-at-daa-over-impact-from-north-runway-33342/

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