Last week saw the first quarterly meeting discussing the progress of Adamstown SDZ take place between South Dublin County Councillors and county council planners.
Sought by Independent councillor Liona O’Toole, the meeting discussed infrastructure developments such as amendments to proposed building heights, funding availability, schools and creches, the planned district centre and the opening of three new parks among others.
Adamstown, the town initially proposed in the 1998 South Dublin County Development Plan has been under construction since 2005 with the railway station opening in 2007.
However, although plans at the time envisioned about 10,000 houses to be built by 2018, only 2,635 houses have been built so far.
Labour Cllr Joanna Tuffy, who also attended the meeting, says the economic crash of 2008 essentially halted the development of Adamstown with the construction of infrastructure and housing only commencing over the past couple of years.
“I think the main reason for the delay was the property crash – so while houses not being built additional infrastructure could not be built because various items of infrastructure are phased to be built in tandem with the housing at different stages of housing development,” she says.
“Everything was done according to the SDZ and Adamstown is unique in that the developers built a train station early on in the development and three schools,” says Tuffy.
Tuffy says that without people buying houses during the recession years there was very little demand for Adamstown to further develop.
South Dublin County Council’s has said that a successful Local Infrastructure Housing Activation Funds (LIHAF) funding bid for financial support was “linked to the delivery of 2,000 new homes within the Adamstown SDZ.”
The council says “the delivery of these homes is currently underway with over 1,500 homes already completed or contracted and the remaining 500 homes under construction.
“Within the large-scale delivery of homes, there are 300 homes at or below a cost of €300,000 and a further 500 at or below €320,000,” it says.
However, some residents who have bought houses in the area say that progress of the town has not matched their expectations.
John Coleman, a member of the nearby Finnstown Abbey/Cloisters Residents Association said last year that, “when people bought in Adamstown, when that whole process started, they were sold the image of a town centre that had a swimming pool, it had cafes, restaurants, high street retail units.
“The total sum of the town centre is a Londis and a hairdressers. It’s just absolutely a disgrace.”
O’Toole says that the recent meeting clarified a number of issues regarding infrastructure in the town and says development is progressing.
She told Dublin Gazette: “I’m delighted to say that permission for the District Centre has been granted. This will be a huge asset to the area and will comprise of a number of units and will include car parking spaces which will be above ground.
“Crèches are another amenity badly needed in the area. I can confirm that the Adamstown Community Centre has been granted planning permission for one in the centre.”
O’Toole also said that Traveller accommodation is at the planning stage and further updates will be provided shortly.
Three parks are also soon to be opened in the area, which are called Tandy’s Lane, Airlie Park and Tobermaclug.
O’Toole says that Tandy’s Lane should be open by March 2021, while work on Airlie Park has begun. She says she “doesn’t have much detail,” on Tobermaclug yet.
Other facilities such as Lidl shopping centre and electric charging points are also in the process of being opened.