Controversial road may be removed from plans

by Mark O'Brien

A motion is to be brought before Fingal County Council proposing the removal of the indicative road in St Catherine’s Park, which currently appears on the Fingal county plan and has done so since 2005.
As the road is only an indicative line on the map, there has been no funding allocated to the road, nor has there been any feasibility studies carried out in relation to the road.
However, residents in Leixlip recently began a campaign to remove the road from the plan as it runs through St Catherine’s Park.
The issue was raised last week in the Dail by Dublin West TD Joan Burton.
Deputy Burton raised the issue with Transport Minister Shane Ross, saying that the amenity was vital to the populations of Dublin 15, Lucan and North Kildare.
She stated that she felt that while a link road between the N3 and N4 may be required, it should not be at the expense of the park.
She said: “The destruction of this wonderful regional park would be far too high a price to pay.
“If it was to go through, given the topography of the area with the Liffey located down in a valley with the heights on the south and north sides, it would effectively require another much larger high-level bridge over the Liffey, so it would be extraordinarily expensive.”
In response, Minister Ross stated that if the project were to go ahead it would need to go through a number of stages before it could proceed.
Minister Ross said: “Any project of the likely scale required for the proposed road would have to follow the processes required under various EU directives and related Irish legislation, including the environmental impact assessment, EIA, directive and the habitats directive.
“These environmental assessments must take account of a number of environmental receptors and themes, including landscape, cultural heritage … material assets, air and noise.
“They must also look at realistic alternative options and set out the preferred option.”
Minister Ross added that this process had not started for the St Catherine’s Park road.
The issue also dominated last week’s Castleknock/Mulhuddart Area Committee meeting of Fingal County Council. A number of councillors brought forward motions requesting clarity on the indicative road.
Cllrs Mary McCamley, Tania Doyle, Matt Waine, Paul Donnelly and Roderic O’Gorman all brought forward motions supporting the removal of the road from the plan.
Cllr McCamley plans to bring a motion before the full council requesting that the road be removed from the plan.

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