Mixed reaction as long-running Glenalbyn Swimming Pool saga continues

by Rebecca Ryan
Minister Shane Ross Cllr Deirdre Donnelly at Glenalbyn Swimming Pool

There is mixed reaction to Glenalbyn Swimming Pool being omitted from the Stillorgan Local Area Plan (LAP).

On September 10 Dun Laoghaire Rathdown councillors voted at the council meeting to exclude the pool from the LAP.

It is the latest twist in the long-running saga of the public Stillorgan pool, which was closed for health and safety reasons in December 2013.

There are currently negotiations happening between Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council (DLRCC) who own the pool site and Kilmacud Crokes GAA who own the neighbouring lands for access to Glenalbyn during a rebuild.

Minister Shane Ross told Dublin Gazette the LAP omission will not jeopardise the future of the pool.

“The inclusion or exclusion of the Glenalbyn Swimming Pool site from the Stillorgan Local Area Plan is absolutely irrelevant to its re-opening.

“The future of the pool depends entirely on the ongoing negotiations between Kilmacud Crokes and DLRCC management. I understand that both sides are fully engaged and that some very detailed technical issues are being addressed.

“Naturally this process is taking time and effort but both parties are committed to undertaking this necessary work. After the summer recess this process has now recommenced, and I am hopeful of a positive resolution in the near future.”

Local councillor Deirdre Donnelly (IND) echoed Minister Ross’ comments. “I [previously] contacted the senior planner from DLRCC with responsibility for the plan and I was
told that the boundary of the LAP did not extend as far as Kilmacud Crokes grounds, and therefore, the pool did not have to be included.

“The future of the pool depended on the outcome of the discussions between Kilmacud Crokes and DLRCC and its inclusion in the LAP would make no difference to the outcome,” said Cllr Donnelly.

However, Stillorgan councillor John Kennedy (FG) is critical of the “u-turn” by the “majority of councillors” to exclude Glenalbyn Pool site from Stillorgan Local Area Plan.

Cllr Kennedy said: “One of the important aspects of a Local Area Plan in legislation is to earmark where future facilities are to be located.

“There is no objective merit in not specifying Glenalbyn as a targeted swimming pool site, given that €10 million is ringfenced by the council for pool redevelopment there, and public representatives and the community have been geared up for ultimate restoration of pool services at this site.”

Cllr Kennedy continued: “A great many submissions from the public in relation to the Local Area Plan specifically sought inclusion of the Glenalbyn site within the plans.

“Inevitably some sense of disappointment from the community, on foot of those submissions, in relation to this outcome would be expected.”

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