Lavelle welcomes NTA plans to reopen Phoenix Park rail tunnel

April 3, 2014 by  
Filed under Campaigns

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 calls on bank-appointed Receiver to improve Dodsboro/ Paddocks boundary

February 28, 2014 by  
Filed under Campaigns

William Lavelle, local councillor for Lucan, has called on Grant Thornton to authorise the carrying of work to provide a more attractive boundary treatment between the undeveloped lands south of ‘The Paddocks’ and Dodsboro Road/Tandys Lane. Grant Thornton are the Receivers appointed by the banks to manage ‘The Paddocks’ development and lands which were previously owned by Mapelwood Developments. 

Paddocks-Dodsboro 540x400

William stated: “Residents in Dodsboro are fed-up having to look out at this unsightly boundary which comprises ramshackle and falling-down metal railings fronting an unfinished building site.”

William has previously called on the Council to seek to use it powers to force the receiver to improve the boundary. However in response to a motion which William tabled at last October’s meeting of the Lucan Area Committee, council officials reported that “attractive boundary treatments to Dodsboro Cottages and Tandy’s lane are beyond the boundaries of the envisaged taking-in-charge areas and are in areas which are the subject of current live Planning Permissions. Accordingly we, SDCC, cannot force the Developer to carry out works here.”

William stated: “I intend to intensify pressure on the receiver to try to sort out this boundary issue once and for all.”

William has tabled the following motion which will be discussed at the Lucan Area Committee this coming Tuesday:

“That this Area Committee requests the Manager to formally write, on behalf of this Committee, to Mr. Paul McCann of Grant Thornton (in his role as the Receiver appointed to manage the former Maplewood lands at Adamstown SDZ) to ask if he would agree to authorising works in response to the long-standing requests from the residents of Dodsboro Cottages and from this Committee for a more attractive boundary treatment between the undeveloped lands south of The Paddocks and Dodsboro Road/Tandys Lane; and to further advise Mr. McCann that members of this Committee are available to meet with him on-site to further discuss this matter.”

In response to William’s motion, Council officials agreed to contact the Receiver and to support my request.

SDCC to retake controversial Lucan site from Shelbourne Developments

February 18, 2014 by  
Filed under Campaigns

griffeen-avenue-590x400Cllr. William Lavelle, Fine Gael local councilor for Lucan, has welcomed South Dublin County Council’s move to retake ownership from Shelbourne Developments of a controversial 41.5 acre site in Lucan, bounded by Griffeen Avenue, the Outer Ring Road and the Kildare rail line.

Cllr. Lavelle has now received a report from South Dublin County County Council stating that ‘following protracted negotiations between the Council, Shelbourne and NAMA, agreement was reached that Shelbourne would transfer the lands that it had acquired from the Council back to the Council in full and final settlement of all outstanding issues”.

William welcomed this move, stating, By retaking the site, the Council has effectively killed-off the planned development of 898 high-density apartments by Shelbourne Development on these lands. I will now turn my focus to working with the local community to ensure that residents have a say at an early stage on the future for these publicly-owned lands.”

In 2006, the then Council voted unanimously to dispose of the site to Gareth Kelleher’s Shelbourne Developments (of ‘Chicago Spire’ fame) as part of a controversial land-swap. There was significant anger when it emerged that the then councillors did not consult with the local community before agreeing the disposal.

This decision was further compounded by the decision by the then councilors in 2008 to adopt the Clonburris Local Area (LAP) despite significant local opposition. The main concerns regarding the LAP related to the unrealistic 67% target for pubic transport/walking/cycling which was cited as the theoretical basis for the required high densities. Further concerns related to the provisions allowing 6-storey buildings to be built right next door to existing two-storey housing at Oldbridge, Rossberry, Tullyhall, Moy Glas and Foxborough estates.

In line with the LAP adopted by the then councilors, Shelbourne Developments subsequently secured planning permission to build 898 high-density residential units on the land-swap site, despite a large campaign of objections from the community through the ‘Combined Griffeen Planning Action Group’, of which William was a member.

William states: “It is these poor decisions by the last 2004-2009 council which sparked me to seek election to the council in June 2009.”

“Since my election I have worked to seek to overturn both the controversial 2006 land disposal decision and the Clonburris LAP.”

“With respect to the Local Area Plan, the council agreed in recent months that it would be allowed to lapse later this year.”

“With respect to the land disposal, I have repeatedly raised this at numerous council meetings as well as directly with council officials and the council law agent. Last year the Council initiated legal action against Shelbourne Development and last week I received confirmation from the council’s Director of Planning that ‘following protracted negotiations between the Council, Shelbourne and NAMA, agreement was reached that Shelbourne would transfer the lands that it had acquired from the Council back to the Council in full and final settlement of all outstanding issues’”.

William added: “I am delighted that two of my top election priorities from 2009: securing reversal of the land-swap and cancellation of the high-rise Local Area Plan, are now to be achieved.”

Lavelle addresses Lucan’s large Kerala Indian community at New Years celebration

January 5, 2014 by  
Filed under Campaigns

Lucan Malayalee - 540x400William Lavelle, local councillor for Lucan, has joined the Lucan Malayalee Club for their New Years Celebration.

The club which is eight years old provides a social platform for Lucan and Adamstown’s large community of Kerala Indians, known as Malayalee. Lucan and Adamstown is the chosen home of nearly 100 Malayalee families, whose roots lie the Kerala region of southern India.

Cllr. Lavelle addressed the Lucan Malayalee Club’s New Year Celebration held on Saturday 4th January in Scoil Lorcain in Palmerstown.

William “thanked the Malayalee community fro playing an active role in community life in Lucan”. William also commended the club on its “important role in preserving and passing on Kerala’s rich culture, including song and dance to their children in Lucan.” William congratulated the organisers and performers at the New Years Celebration which he described “a super showcase for Malayalee song, dance and food.”

William also helped the Lucan Malayalee Club to launch their new website



Protecting the Liffey Valley – Lavelle meets new owners of St. Ed’s

December 12, 2013 by  
Filed under Campaigns

St.Eds auction signWilliam has met with the Chief Executive of Luttrelstown Castle Golf & Country Club who confirmed to that his company has acquired the 274 acre land bank at St. Edmundsbury.

 The new owners advised William that the St. Ed’s lands had been acquired as a long term investment. They further indicated to William that a local farmer had been appointed to farm the lands and that two houses which were occupied up until recent years, are to be refurbished.

 William took the opportunity to inform the new owners of the Lucan community’s long-held opposition to any residential development on these lands.

 William stated: As a local resident; and as your local councillor; I will continue to campaign to ensure the highest levels of protection for the Liffey Valley lands and to oppose any and all proposals for inappropriate development!”

The lands are subject to a dedicated ‘Liffey Valley’ land zoning; which William first proposed and drafted in 2010; and which was subsequently adopted by councillors as part of the current County Development Plan. 

William also took the opportunity to ask if the new owners would examine, in conjunction with South Dublin County Council, the potential of providing walking routes along the River Liffey.  William has also tabled this proposal for the December meeting of the council’s Lucan Area Committee.



Lavelle selected for 2014 local elections

October 2, 2013 by  
Filed under Campaigns

Local Councillor William Lavelle has been selected by Fine Gael to contest the 2014 local elections in the Lucan/Palmerstown area.

William stated: “I’m honoured to have been selected by Fine Gael to contest the 2014 local elections. I wish to thank two Beech Park residents: Joe Byrne and Brenda Coyne (Chair of Lucan Branch FG) for proposing and seconding my nomination at tonight’s convention.”

In his speech to the selection convention, William told delegates that “I am proud to call Lucan my home, proud to serve our community as your local councillor… and with your support and selection tonight I hope to ask the people of Lucan to let me continue in that task.”

William wished all the best to Lucan’s Vicki Casserly-Naughton and Palmerstown’s Gerry Kennedy who will join William on the FG ticket.

William said: “I look forward to working with Vicki and Gerry to seek to deliver three seats for Fine Gael in the Lucan/Palmerstown area in next May’s election.”

Lavelle welcomes review of Adamstown masterplan

March 12, 2013 by  
Filed under Campaigns, Lucan

– 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 welcomes progress in taking-of-charge of Larkfield and Mount Bellew estates

March 12, 2013 by  
Filed under Lucan

Cllr. William Lavelle, local councillor for Lucan has welcomed progress in the taking-in-charge of both Larkfield and Mount Bellew estates, both of which will shortly be advertised for final taking-in-charge by South Dublin County Council

Larkfield and Mount Bellew were both developed by Fitzgibbons Bros.

William states: “Over recent years I have worked with residents to seek to progress the taking-in-charge of both Larkfield and Mount Bellew. “

In 2010, William helped secure the taking-in-charge of open spaces at Larkfield. However the taking-in-charge of roads and drains has since been delayed. Last April councillors were advised that the major barriers to taking-in-charge of Larkfield related to legal issues surrounding wayleaves. This remained the case for many months.

However last November William received information from the estate developer, Fitzgibbons Bros, advising that legal documentation had in fact been previously submitted.

William states: “On foot of this information I intervened with the council and between this and the proactive approach of Fitzgibbons, things began moving. Last week I received a letter from the council to advise that the process has been progressed to a stage where it will be advertised for taking-in-charge.”

At the same time, Fitzgibbons completed works in Mount Bellew including required CCTV surveys of the drainage system. This work has been completed to the satisfaction of the council and William was also advised last week that that the taking-in-charge of Mount Bellew is now also to be advertised.

William added: “I wish to thank both Fitzgibbons and the council for progressing these taking-in-charges. As local councillor I am delighted that we have been able to progress the completion of so many estates in recent times.”

Lucan’s Joe Byrne wins ‘Community Volunteer of the Year’

January 28, 2013 by  
Filed under Campaigns

Beech Park resident Joe Byrne has been named ‘Community Volunteer of the Year’ at the 2013 Local Authority Members Association Awards.

Joe was nominated by Cllr. William Lavelle in recognition of his four decades of community activity with Lucan Sarsfields, Liffey Sound FM, Lucan Planning Council and Liffey Valley Park Alliance.

William congratulated Joe describing him as “a true champion of the community”.

William pictured with Joe & Margaret Byrne, Miriam O’Callaghan & Minister Phil Hogan

Lavelle welcomes council approval for 12th Lock road upgrade

December 10, 2012 by  
Filed under Campaigns

Development will greatly improve safety, in particular for children walking and cycling to and from Lucan Sarsfields GAA club

Cllr. William Lavelle, local councillor for Lucan, has today (Monday 10th December) welcomed the vote by South Dublin County Council to approval for a Part 8 planning application for a major upgrade of the Lucan-Newcastle road between Adamstown and the Polly Hops.

William stated: “I have been a consistent campaigner for road improvements in the 12th Lock area.
“This road upgrade scheme will greatly improve safety for motors, pedestrians and cyclists, in particular for children walking and cycling to and from Lucan Hartsfield GAA clubs. I have been regularly contacted by parents of children playing with Sarsfields asking for safety improvements so this development is very welcome.

“I have also been in regular contact with club officials from both Lucan Sarsfields and Lucan Pitch & Putt and I wish to thank council engineers for working with the clubs to ensure that the road plans are acceptable.

William also thanked council officials for the proposed measures to eliminate any negative impact on the heritage and biodiversity in the 12th Lock and Grand Canal area.

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