Lavelle welcomes NTA plans to reopen Phoenix Park rail tunnel

April 3, 2014 by  
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Rail link will greatly benefit West Dublin including Adamstown SDZ

phoenixparktunnel -540x400Cllr. William Lavelle, Fine Gael local councillor for Lucan, has welcomed the National Transport Authority’s plans to reopen the Phoenix Park rail tunnel to allow commuter trains from the Kildare line, including Lucan and Adamstown, to travel directly to Dublin City Centre and the Docklands. The reopening of the Phoenix Park rail tunnel would also allow trains from the Kildare line to integrate with both the Maynooth line and with the planned new Luas cross-city line. The plan to reopen the tunnel is contained in the NTA Integrated Implementation Plan 2013-2018 launched on April 3rd by Minister for Transport Leo Varadkar.

Cllr. Lavelle stated: “I warmly welcome this plan to reopen the Phoenix Park rail tunnel. This proposal represents common-sense planning: using existing unused infrastructure to maximise public transport capacity. I have been a long-time supporter of the need to reopen the tunnel as I believe it will provide a sustainable short-medium term solution to bring more Lucan and Adamstown commuters direct to the city centre and docklands; in turn reducing traffic congestion and aiding both the regional economy and quality-of-life.”

“The opening of the tunnel and provision of a direct rail link will also support residential development in areas such as the Adamstown SDZ (strategic development zone) where a rail station is already in place.”

Over the past five years, Cllr. Lavelle has repeatedly lobbied the NTA and Irish Rail to reopen the tunnel. South Dublin County Council have previously agreed motions proposed by Cllr. Lavelle calling for the re-opening the Phoenix Park rail tunnel.

In 2010 Cllr. Lavelle received a response to a Freedom of Information request to the Department of Transport seeking information on any feasibility studies carried into the possible use of Phoenix Park rail tunnel. The information released to Cllr. Lavelle came from the 2003 ‘Dublin Interconnector Rail Study – Summary Report’ prepared by Parsons Brinckerhoff and concluded that the Phoenix Park rail tunnel could never be an alternative to Interconnector (DART underground) proposal. It did however conclude that in the short-term, the use of the Phoenix Park would provide some ‘early benefits to users of the Kildare line’ and its use ‘should therefore be given serious consideration’”. 

Cllr. Lavelle added that “in the long-term the proposed DART Underground proposal must be delivered this project would be a game-changer for Dublin transport. But in the short-medium term the Phoenix Park tunnel can be reopened and should be used. The plans published by Minister Varadkar and NTA are therefore very welcome.”

Lavelle welcomes review of Adamstown masterplan

March 12, 2013 by  
Filed under Campaigns, Lucan

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– Councillor secured agreement for review at recent council meeting
– 10 years since plans adopted for Ireland’s newest town
– 1,249 occupied units in Adamstown – Lavelle says “Adamstown is no ‘ghost estate’.”

Cllr. William Lavelle, local councillor for Lucan, has this week welcomed the planned review by South Dublin County Council of the Adamstown SDZ masterplan. The strategic development zone planning scheme is 10 years old this year, having been adopted in 2003 as an ambitious plan for Ireland’s newest town.

At the January meeting of the Council’s Lucan Area Committee, William tabled a motion: “That this Area Committee recognises the importance of Adamstown SDZ Planning Scheme in guiding the sustainable development to date of Adamstown, but recommends that it would be appropriate during 2013, ten years after its adoption, to review the SDZ Planning Scheme including, in particular, the phasing requirements; and to provide the residents of Adamstown an opportunity to input on the future planning of their community.”

Council managers accepted William’s request, reporting that: “Review of the Adamstown SDZ Planning Scheme forms part of the Planning Department work programme for 2013. The Local Area Committee was briefed on this and other matters related to the 2013 forward planning work programme prior to the January Area Committee Meeting. The review process will facilitate input from all interested parties, including in particular, Adamstown residents.”

Councillors were last week advised that the Council was initiating the statutory process to amend the Adamstown SDZ Planning Scheme and that the process will include ‘pre-plan’ public consultation from 25th March to 22nd April 2013 and will include facilitated sessions for residents, landowners and other stakeholders.

Latest statistics indicate that of the 1,400 units commenced, there are 1,249 occupied residential units in Adamstown – meaning an 89% occupancy rate.

William states: “These figures prove that Adamstown is no ‘ghost estate’. It has a vibrant residential population. But the changed economic climate has seriously stalled the development outlook for Adamstown. I feel it is therefore timely that we update the Adamstown masterplan and that residents play a central role in the future planning of their community.”

William has recently met with representatives of the new Adamstown Residents Association regarding the consultation process and a proposal to establish a resident’s planning group. William has also met with representatives of the Adamstown Community College Parents Association, Adamstown Cricket Club and with both Castlethorn Developments, who developed the southern ‘Castlegate’ area of Adamstown; and with Grant Thornton, who are the court-appointed Receivers overseeing completion of the northern ‘Paddocks’ area of Adamstown

William commented that: “having spoken with many Adamstown residents I believe that the upcoming review should include a number of key objectives including:
– Revising the phasing of much-needed community infrastructure such as the long-awaited Sports/Community Hall and the first large park;
– Linking up the Castlegate & Paddocks areas so as to consolidate the Adamstown community; and
– Revising residential densities and parking ratios so as to ensure that future development is both sustainable and realistic.”

William added: “As local councillor, I am committed to ensuring that Adamstown is not simply left as an unfinished development.”

William pictured with Minister Frances Fitzgerald and members of Adamstown Cricket Club

Lavelle secures reopening of Finnstown House-Adamstown pedestrian link

October 28, 2011 by  
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William has warmly welcomed the positive deicison of the receiver appoinetd to Finnstown House Hotel to reopen the locked pedestrian gate between the hotel grounds and Adamstown following Cllr. Lavelle’s intervention.

The gate had been locked at the start of Summer at the behest of the court-appointed receiver to the Mansifield–owned hotel.

Cllr. Lavelle states: ”I had been contacted by a large number of Adamstown residents who previsouly used this gate to access the hotel and gym. It’s closure was a blow to many residents.

“I had discussions with hotel management and identifed concerns that existed over the potential creation of a legal right-of-way. I subsequently issued formal correspondance to the receiver clarifiying the legal position with respect to rights-of-way and requesting on behalf of residents that the gate be reopened.

“I am delighted that on foot of my intervention the receiver has now decided to reopen the gate between the hours of 6am and 10pm subject to regular review.. The hotel wrote to me this week (27th September) advising me of the decision which is most welcome.