Our council needs to start looking at solutions to the housing shortage, which in my area hasn’t seen one affordable housing unit built yet. If the city wants to deal with this issue it must have a council chamber united to solve the problem.
Even though our urban population is rising, the number of homes being built has stalled. The number of homes being built needs to double to meet demand and deliver genuinely affordable prices.
Dublin City Council must be equipped with enough skills and expertise to deliver social and affordable homes on state-owned, zoned land in the city and county. For instance, there is an abundance of this to the north my area in south Fingal
The level of bureaucracy in local authorities has certainly hampered our ability to take hold of the crisis in housing to date. It’s my view that discretionary spending limits on how much the city council can spend without the Department [of Housing]'s approval should be increased to allow them to get on with building much needed homes. Long-drawn-out planning decisions are also delaying construction – establishing a new specialised planning court can breakdown that bottleneck.
Our party’s affordable-housing scheme is also aimed at those who are above social housing thresholds but are priced out of owning a home in their local area.
By proposing motions in City Hall, and by lobbying government officials to increase the amount of social and affordable homes. This can be done by using the land the state owns already to build houses, and using CPOs to turn vacant buildings into homes for us all.
There is a chronic shortage of social and affordable homes in Ireland. I would push Dublin City Council to start building homes as they did previously in the '70s. One of the factors preventing DCC from being able to build land is the zoning laws. Greenfield sites zoned for housing development are extraordinarily high in Ireland, and far above what the council can afford to offer. There are 1,000s of brownfield sites across Dublin lying vacant and derelict. These must be levied into sale or use. The only type of housing development is developer-led. The current requirements for social housing in such development is too low. This figure should be brought up significantly. We need housing to be provided by the council, housing associations and private developers, not just the latter.
Accelerate the current housing programme of Dublin City Council and press central government for: 1. More funding for social housing; 2. An end to excessive red tape that is delaying delivery of social housing; 3. A proper affordable housing scheme that is within reach of people on low to middle incomes.
I have been campaigning for more public and affordable homes. What should be meant by affordable is linked to ability to pay, not the market rates. I would continue to campaign and fight inside the council chamber. I believe all public land sites should have 100 percent public homes. I don't believe private developers should be able to profit from public lands, especially while people are struggling to pay huge rents and suffering overcrowding and homelesness.
Dublin is a very low density city and the supply of homes needs to increase dramatically. These must be not just high-end luxury homes – we need a mix of cost-rental homes, apartments and accommodation suitable for older people trading down. There are over 700 local authority and Housing Agency-owned sites (1,700 hectares). This land should be brought into use immediately to deliver homes with good social and tenure mix. Targets for the Dublin housing plan need to be increased.
A home is one of the most basic needs a person has and home ownership is deeply ingrained in Irish society as a goal. Home ownership should be within the reach of the majoiry but sadly is not. One of the main factors contributing to high costs is the increased land value, often driven by speculation more than real value. The Land Development Agency can be used to address this problem and bring underutilised and vacant sites, including publicly owned lands, into use to ensure increased supply of social and affordable homes.
Continue to campaign for the building of public housing on all available and suitably zoned land. Create a public home building company. End the private land hoarding, with compulsary purchase at non-market prices if required to meet home building targets.
Housing is one of my key priorities. Public land should be used to build public housing, this would include social and public and be available to people on average incomes. State funds should be used and stop the reliance on the market and private developers to build homes. A major house-building programme could also reduce the "stigma" associated with council housing by providing it to people on every level of income.
We need to look at ways to reduce rent in our city. I believe it is time to limit rents in Dublin or we will risk another generation leaving this city because of high rent.
The severe dysfunction in the city’s housing system is not only failing families in homelessness but also those desperately trying to juggle a full-time job and household bills and paying exceptionally high rent with no hope of saving for a mortgage.
I very much support the accelerated roll-out of a cost-rental scheme in the city, which would mean providing land for building units for rent at a not-for-profit cost. This could be achieved in collaboration with the Land Development Agency.
Supporting any motion that calls for rent caps and lobbying government for the same.
The cost of renting a home in Dublin is preventing a whole generation to get on the property ladder, and the money we’re handing over to landlords is money we’re not spending in the local economy. The tax on rental income is in the region of 52 percent. While there is a housing crisis it is abhorrent that government would collect tax at that rate from people struggling to make payment. Rental tax needs to be substantially reduced to bring the cost for renters down.
I would push for 10-year leases, with proper protections for renters, with inflation-linked rent reviews, which could be determined by the Central Bank. I would fight for a cost-rental housing model, successfully used in many other European countries, where the state would build houses to rent. These houses should remain in state ownership.
Short-term rentals let on Airbnb to tourists are choking the supply of available accommodation in Dublin. While new measures have been brought in I would call on DCC to develop a new body, the Dublin Housing Agency, to manage renting in the city to ensure there is compliance with the law and to set targets to drive rental prices down. This role would involve the review of rental market, inspection of rental properties, provide a register of rental property rates (to ensure rent cap compliance) and license and manage short term-lets.
We need rent caps urgently. We need increased protections for renters also. The current legislation makes it too easy for landlords to evict people. Nobody should be evicted into homelesness.
Again it's about supply. Local-authority house-building targets need to be increased. In the meantime tenants’ rights need to be strengthened.The Social Democrats' policy is to have a rent freeze until enough supply is back in the system. And a transparent register of rental amounts in the council area. Security of tenure via indefinite tenancies – which are widespread in mainland Europe – is required.
Cost-rental model should be expanded to be an important part of our rental market. Cost rental is where tenants pay rent to cover the maintenance of the property and is lower than market rent and is successful in many other European countries. Regulation and enforcement of short-term lets (for tourism) is also important, this reduces the supply available and introduces inflationary presssure on the rental market. New regulations are coming and Dublin City Council will need to ensure they are properly enforced.
Support strict rent controls and fair deal for accidental landlords such as compulsory acquisitions or mortgage restructuring on the basis of retrospective revaluation to 2013 prices.
Establish a rental board with the express aim of cutting rents by linking them to the Consumer Price Index. Introduce legal measures to stop landlords refusing state payments like HAP [Housing Assistance Payment] and RAS [Rent Accommodation Scheme]. Existing rent controls should be enforced and extended. Homes in the city, not hotel accommodation, should be the planning priority. I also favour action on limiting the levels of Airbnb accommodation until the housing crisis is dealt with. This could include an examination of how other cities have dealt with the issue.
Homelessness in Dublin is continuing to spiral out of control. A renewed effort from every city councillor is needed to deal with this head-on. We must not forget about the forgotten homeless that are continuing to live with their families. They need solutions too.
Homelessness is a scandal of proportions never previously seen in our city. The government’s housing strategy is not working. It has been frustrating over the course of the past number of years as a councillor I am acutely aware of the emergency but restricted by the council’s inability to make moves quickly because of unnecessary red tape. Prioritising a Housing First approach, drawing on the model adopted in Finland, has potential. There is no reason why the success in Finland cannot be emulated here. Ultimately ramping up social housing targets is critical.
The state needs to build on its own land and turn long-term vacant houses into social housing. As above, I will support and propose motions on building strong affordable housing.
The fact that there are approximately 10,000 homeless people in Ireland and 3,700 children is a national disgrace. I would look at new ways Dublin City Council could access funding from the EU in order to start building cost rental and social housing.
The lack of supply at a time of economic growth results in every available home in Dublin being rented at exorbitant rates. Meanwhile, the government is paying millions to provide homeless people with temporary accommodation in hotels. The Dublin Housing Agency I am proposing would be set up to help renters, and one element of the agency's work would be to work with communities living in social housing to maximise room usage through voluntary inter-complex rotation, where communities could be maintained but where needs for families (e.g. more rooms) and the elderly (e.g. ground-floor dwelling) are met through house swaps.
On the point of homelessness itself, we have a desperate need to reform the way homeless hostel are being managed. I would fight to change the booking system, which is of great stress to homeless people. People should absolutely be able to book accommodation for more than one night at a time and the booking system should be managed in such a way that is practicable for the people using the services. People who are homeless should be given the maximum dignity that can be achieved while they are homeless and there should be easy access to free sanitary, contraceptive and hygiene products and access to washing facilities.
Develop social housing of all types for those who need it, increasing supply and reducing dependence on the private-rental market. Better protection for tenants in the private-rented sector as lack of protection from rent rises and sales is forcing people into homelessness.
We need to open up empty homes urgently and begin building thousands of public and affordable homes. We need greater protection for renters, no one should be evicted into homelessness. We need legislation that is designed for long-term affordable leasing that has security of tenure. We need better supports for people struggling to pay mortgages on family homes. Again, families should not be made homeless due to inability to pay their mortgages.
Housing is viewed currently as a commodity. Housing should be viewed as a social need that is available to all no matter what a person's income is and in turn that creates a secure stable society has people's welfare at its heart and creates a future for everyone.
We need to drastically increase the number of affordable and social housing units built. We must simplify the very complex set of housing bodies, charity provision and council provision. As with many of these questions on housing and homelessness we need to ensure vacant sites are put back into use through proper use of the vacant sites register.
Increased supply of social and affordable housing will help people finding themselves homeless in the first place. In the short-tem, HAP [the Housing Assistance Payment scheme] can subsidise rents in the private sector, but the ultimate goal is increased supply of appropriate social and affordable housing. The Housing First model has had some success addressing long-term homelessness and rough sleeping, and this model should be expanded.
Strict rent controls, a ban on economic evictions and an expansion of public house building.
I would seek to have the council unify the agencies providing homeless services in the city. The current crazy situation where agencies compete against each other to get contracts for providing homeless services must stop. This is a prime example of neo-liberalism gone mad. I would also favour the council using CPO [compulsory purchase order] powers on vacant city buildings for use as emergency, short-term, homeless accommodation.
While canvassing in my area I have seen a number of properties empty. This needs to be tackled. Our council needs seek out vacant lands across Dublin and ensure there is a measured plan for them.
Since Fine Gael entered power the number of vacant buildings has increased by nearly 60 percent. The owners of vacant property haven’t been remotely encouraged to refurbish the premises to bring it back onto the market and subsequently improve the housing supply. The number of properties being added to the council’s Derelict Sites Register is simply not happening at a fast-enough pace.
The impact of reintroducing the Vacant Site Levy on tackling urban dereliction remains to be seen. Although I am optimistic that by also strengthening CPO [compulsory purchase order] powers, we can make progress on regenerating the abundance of vacant, derelict properties in Dublin.
Something I think should be done, would be to increase the vacant-site levy. Unused land does indeed have a cost for those who hoard it, but the cost needs to be higher.
We have the data on derelict and vacant properties and sites in Dublin. The numbers are staggering. At present it appears all to easy for landowners to allow otherwise good quality properties and acres of land lie idle during chronic homelessness in the city. Land hoarders must be compelled to use or sell land and property lying idle. In many cases the owners of sites are not developers or landlords first or foremost as the have other business interests or sources of income so the motivation to either sell or develop is low. I propose that a levy would be places on vacant and derelict sites to act as a stimulus to create new opportunities for development. If landlords refuse to pay the levy, or take action to sell or develop Dublin City Council should be able to CPO property at preferential rates to bring land into sustainable development.
Accelerate the turnaround of vacant council dwellings, strengthen legislation to require owners of vacant properties and sites to put them to use or face penalties, subject to proper planning.
I believe that the only way to bring empty properties back into use is for the local authority to try and buy some of the properties to use as public housing and to introduce a vacant property tax. There is currently a vacant site levy but its not being properly enforced. The levies or taxes would need to have no loopholes like in other countries and cities and fully enforced.
The tax I feel would have to be at a high rate to ensure it forces owners to obey. If they don't obey the council can take the land or the properties into public ownership and use them for social good, i.e. public housing. The tax collected should go to building public housing.
Dublin City Council needs the resources to properly maintain and update the Vacant Sites Register. As a councillor I will support motions to prioritise development on vacant sites. Business owners and site owners must be actively incentivised to rent out empty spaces for local businesses, community groups and recreation. Empty overshop floors should be used for residential rental which offers more choice for young renters and brings life back to empty urban streets.
Hoarding of derelict and vacant properties is a contributing to the housing crisis as well as resulting in unsightly eyesores across our city. The Vacant Site Levy introduced is a step in the right direcction; this imposed a 3 percent levy on vacant properties in 2018, increasing to 7 percent in 2019. This should be monitored to assess effectiveness and adjusted if required. Compulsory purchase orders also have their place when other measures have failed.
Compulsory purchase by local authority if the private owners won't bring into productive use.
The Vacant Site Levy should be increased and enforced. Properties and sites, after six months on a register of vacant sites, should be CPOed for public use. Fear of constitutional property rights is being used to hide behind the responsibility of the city council and state to provide for the human and public right to a home.
Public transport in our city is beginning to buckle with demand at peak times. Our city needs to have serious investment in transport on our Dart and bus services in the coming years.
Those depending on public transport services in Dublin are at their wits' end – crammed onto dangerously overcrowded Dart carriages and Luas trams like sardines. There are several elements of our public transport infrastructure that need to be dramatically improved.
Reducing the overall over-reliance unsustainable forms of transport and decarbonising the Dublin Bus fleet are critical.
Over the past two years, especially, the rate of anti-social behaviour on public transport has escalated. That’s one of the reasons why I believe that a dedicated Dublin Transport Police must be established as a unit of An Garda Síochána to deter anti-social behaviour and clamp down on public-order offences on services.
As any daily commuter can tell you, increasing the capacity of Irish Rail services and improving on both the frequency and efficiency of all Dublin based public transport services are urgent.
Lobby for a carbon tax which could be ringfenced to improving our public transport, by increasing the amount invested in it each year. The cost of public transport as well needs to be kept low, and a carbon tax can help keep the cost at point of use very low indeed.
I believe that a well-developed underground network would have an incredible effect on Dublin city and this is something I would fight to see delivered. An underground network would facilitate the development of a prosperous and highly connected city as it has done in London for over 100 years. One of the major advantages would be in helping people travel from work to home in the city and connecting families and friends living in different areas without needing a car. Most importantly it would get people our of their cars which would free up road space, which is highly limited and dangerous for cyclists and creating space for buses and improve punctuality, while reducing driver stress and burnout.
I am supportive of the BusConnects plan as this city deserves a reliable and more dispersed route network and I would support and contribute to the consultation process. Current plans for BusConnects place hundreds of trees – the lungs of our city – at risk of felling. It is essential that we do not fell trees in order to make extra space for buses in addition to cars. The goal here should be improve access to bus lanes by reducing the need for space for cars by reducing the number of cars on the road through greater use of public transport.
Private cars have been the solution to transport in Ireland for decades and the number of cars continues to increase. There are a number of reasons for this, including the availability of public transport, the proximity to transport links, the regularity and reliability of services and, very importantly, the cost of using these services in the context of reliability, proximity and regularity. Public transport must not be the "leisure option" for those not under pressure to arrive at a destination punctually.
I think BusConnects and an underground network must be made available to the public at fares that incentivise their use above using cars. In the context of the climate emergency it is critical that the public transport option is attractive to users as replacing car journeys with public transport will help drive carbon emissions down.
Press for greater government investment in public transport which is both essential economic infrastructure and a key public service. Levels of investment need to be brought up to European standards as it is among the lowest at present. Recast the flawed BusConnects plan in consultation with communities to make it more responsive to their needs. Restore staffing to DART stations.
Firstly I would campaign for free public transport. We need to stop selling off bus routes to private entities and take those routes privatised back. Public transport run by private entities for profit does not work. The service becomes compromised for annual profit margins. We need to increase the frequency of all our public transport especially at peak times. I use public transport daily. Morning and evening peak times it can be impossible to get a place on a bus. I know the Luas is very busy and packed at peak times. Public transport, if used correctly, can reduce our city's congestion by reducing the amount of cars and in turn reduces carbon emissions. Public transport needs to be a huge part of addressing climate change.
I am a huge advocate for public transport. It’s more efficient and more eco-friendly. For decades we have encouraged private-car use in Dublin city centre through very cheap on-street parking and very little in the way of cycle lanes and decent public transport. Public transport should be made cheaper to incentivise use. Much of the road space in the city that is currently dedicated to cars must be given over to safe, segregated cycle lanes and better bus lanes.
The BusConnects redesign may go some way to addressing these issues, particularly in the suburbs. As a councillor I will facilitate sensible changes to road layouts under BusConnects, redesign of junctions to help ease congestion for all road users while ensuring that the public consultation process continues.
On the council I will advocate for sensible and simple measures like transfer tickets between buses, reduction in fares, local link services for the elderly.
Public transport is key in order to create a fairer, greener, healthier, and more prosperous city.
Right now we have issues with overcrowding, reliability and the speed and effectiveness of our buses and trains, leaving many people with no alternative than to drive. Car dependency has resulted in Dublin becoming the third most congested city in the world. It has contributed to poor public health, hostile street environments, lost productivity, not to mention the environmental impact.
We need to redesign our street layouts to prioritise public transport and active travel (walking and cycling). Our streets are where Dubliners live their lives, socalise and interact. We need to ensure they are pleasant, healthy environments that facilitate sustainable public transport that’s fast, affordable and safe. I’m committed to working to achieve this if elected.
Public transport needs to be expanded and free at the point of use as is already the case in a number of cities. The pay-off socially, environmentally and traffic-wise would be massive.
There are fewer buses operating in the city than 10 years ago. Fares are too high and many buses are overcrowded. The fleet needs to be increased and fares cut. There should be an immediate reduction of all fares to €1. A massive expansion of the bus fleet is required and a move to a fare-free policy. This would also be a significant contributor to reducing our carbon emissions. At the moment we have an agency, the NTA, which has huge powers and little accountability. Its neo-liberal thinking is obsessed with competition and facilitating private transport operators, rather than the provision of a public service. The city council should have a greater role in public transport policy and provision.
We have seen an improvement on cycling infrastructure across Dublin in last few years, but a continued improve on cycling links will help reduce the burden on other transport links across the city.
Cyclists in our city continue to endure appalling conditions and so it is no surprise a great number of them are left injured, or hospitalised following road traffic accidents each year. These are usually caused by dangerous weaknesses in infrastructure due to lack of national transport funding.
A funding scheme that ringfences a proportion of Dublin City Council’s Local Government Fund is the only sustained way of properly investing in improving the city’s cycling infrastructure.
Fixed penalty cameras should be put in place to free up cycle lanes and segregated cycle lanes need to be introduced if we are serious about increasing access to bike sharing schemes or encourage more commuters to get back up on their bikes.
As a cyclist I know how important this will be for our city in the years ahead. I will use my position as councillor to ensure that all Part VII road developments include spaces for cycling, and that existing cycle lanes are maintained and improved so that cycling becomes a realistic option for all.
Continue to develop cycle lanes and cycleways and secure parking for bikes, expand the Dublinbikes scheme.
Our cycling infrastructure is inadequate and in places dangerous. Cycling needs to be taken seriously as a form of transport in Dublin.
City planners need to listen to cyclists and look at cities that have successful cycling infrastructure. One policy I would like to initiate is to create safe off-road cycling paths linking them to schools. This will encourage more children and parents to cycle to school.
I’m a daily cyclist and my bike is my primary mode of transport. I am an active campaigner to improve Dublin’s very poor cycling infrastructure. In short, we need to Copenhagenise. That means we need to have an over-arching policy to prioritise cycling as a major transport solution. First, last and always we need safe, segregated cycle lanes throughout the city.
There was no consultation process on allowing cars to dominate our city over the decades – so why did it take eight years for the Liffey cycle route to be approved. We need to end these ridiculous delays in cycling planning throughout the city. We need to be experimental in our approach to changes throughout the city centre to discourage car use and encourage bicycle use. We must measure the success of these measures and adapt as necessary.
Specific measures include segregated cycle lanes as the norm, the roll-out of more bicycle parking spaces, priority green lights for bikes, left turns on red for bikes and so on.
Very simply, we have to make it safe if a cycle lane is not safe for a five-year-old child then it’s simply not safe enough. That means segregated cycle paths. Copenhagen and the Netherlands provide great templates we can follow and learn from. We need a comprehensive network of cycle lanes that is planned and joined up not a series of one-off projects.
I cycle every day, I have for years put up more miles on my bike than on my car. I see too often badly designed cycle infrastructure that makes it more dangerous not safer (murderstrips to borrow a phrase from our Dutch neighbours). We need to consider what it’s actually like to cycle when designing the cycle network.
The most direct route will be the one cyclists use so diversions should be avoided. Permiability should be incorporated as well as other safely features like advance green lights for cyclists. But again, segregated cycle lanes are key.
I would like to see our city streets redesigned so priority is alocated to pedestrians, cyclists, public transport, commerical vehicles and private cars – in that order. Streets are much more than roads, they are the fabric of our city, where Dubliners live their lives, socalise, interact. We need to make them safe, inviting and healthy.
We need real commitment to make this happen. The Liffey cycle route has taken too long and the Fitzwilliam Cycle route consultation process shows us how a few people can delay a scheme with mass support.
Expand the bikes scheme into the suburbs. Move to segregated lanes as in Copenhagan
I support all the current ideas for dedicated, continuous, cycle routes separated from vehicular traffic. However my policy focus would be to find ways to encourage children to cycle. If we are comfortable with our children cycling, we will be satisfied of its safety, and are more likely to cycle ourselves.
We have seen a renewed appeal for action on climate change. We need to begin tackling the day-to-day habits that will help reduce use of single-use plastics across our city and beyond. Ireland has set a clear example before and we need to continue to set the agenda for climate change.
Positive change starts from the grassroots up and as a local representative I support pragmatic politics that prioritises solutions.
Over the next five years on Dublin City Council, if elected, I will remain committed to the health and prosperity of our urban communities. The existing Local Climate Change Action Plan must be fully administered. While the 119 targeted actions contained in the National Biodiversity Plan are still to be fully achieved.
I believe that the capital raised from a carbon tax should be ringfenced and used to assist those in fuel poverty and to increase supports and incentives to assist Dubliners to change their unsustainable and environmentally damaging use of fossil fuels.
Dublin City Council should be given more flexibility to incentivise local efforts to decarbonise. City councillors have an important part to play in the decision making that is required to address this existential crisis.
Proposing motions on Dublin City Council to make Dublin a green city, and supporting environmentally friendly and renewable-energy-based planning proposals.
Improve public transport and make it more affordable for commuters, reduce dependency on cars, accelerate and expand household insulation and retrofits, provide for micro-generation, allowing households generating electricity at home to sell surplus power back into the grid, reducing their energy bills. Press for far more ambitious government and EU commitments and delivery of measures on climate change e.g. Get the European Central Bank to divest from dirty industries and allow for loans for green development.
Dublin City Council can play a huge role in addressing climate change. It's not about individual responsibility while we can all make positive changes. It's the big-business polluters that need to be tackled. Dublin City Council has the power to enforce changes on big business polluters in Dublin whether that be through the rates system or enforcing other changes. The council can look at ways to reduce the city's plastic use, better recycling facilities, how to create energy with solar panels and wind, and to be more efficient with its energy usage. Addressing climate change and housing should be Dublin City Council's top priorities.
The local council level is a great place to tackle climate change. Microgeneration, renewable energy schemes and better municipal recycling can be driven locally by the council. While I welcome the city council climate action plan I believe it could go further. Public lighting and building upgrades need to be rolled out across older suburbs as well as new developments. Council policy should be to take the energy saving and transport initiatives to the people through schools, community groups and online. We can't rely on just promoting within council buildings.
The council's recently launched a Climate Action Policy is a step in the right direction but there is a lot more to do. We need to ensure the next Dublin City Development Plan has climate change considerations at its core and all future developement and expansion in our city is sustatinable.
Reducing Dublin's car dependency by investing in public transportat and active travel will also have an positive impact on our environment.
Free public transport, and impose bans and strict targets on industry and agriculture. No to the carbon tax which lets business and agriculture off the hook.
Leave fossil fuels in the ground. People Before Profit TD Bríd Smith currently has a bill in the Dáil banning further extraction of fossil fuels. It has passed its first reading, but is being blocked at committee stage. A free public transport system, as currently planned for Luxemburg, would help significantly reduce car traffic in the city.
Dublin City Council must continue to fight litter and illegal dumping. As public bins are becoming less visible, we need to make bins available to the public and more bins for dog poo to combat this locally.
Bringing waste collection services back under Dublin City Council control is one of very few ways to improve the city's worsening waste problem.
Making legislative changes to the Litter Pollution Act is crucial to sending a clear, strong message to dog owners that people will not tolerate those who fail to clean up after their pet.
An increase of bins is needed, and where possible, giving the public the option of recycling bins alongside general waste so that people can recycle on the fly. The city council’s “Green Dog Walker” scheme needs to be advertised a bit more, which has proven successful in other local authorities in Scotland and I would aim to make this more known, perhaps also making dog waste bags more readily available in public.
Return power and responsibility for waste management and household waste collection to councils, restore staffing levels cut during the recession, including for cleansing not only in the city centre but in the suburbs also. Reduce plastic waste by introducing mandatory deposit return schemes and press for change in practice by manufacturers. Increase enforcement measures for illegal dumping, littering and dog fowling.
Refuse collection is probably one of the most important services in our city. Without it, our city stops functioning. It's vital that everyone can afford to use it. First of all our refuse collection needs to return to public hands and under the control of Dublin City Council and removed from private companies. It's clear the cost is becoming prohibative for many, so we need a service that ensures all our wasted is collected and disposed of correctly. One of the first cost-cutting measures of the local authority in the crash of 2008 was to reduce the number of public bins. I would fight to increase the number dramatically including recycling bins and services. Water fountain and taps are needed across Dublin so people can refill and reduce the number of waste with plastic bottles.
We need litter wardens in areas, dog poo is a big issue for people. Some dog owners are just refusing to clean up.Yes, more bins for the dog poo are needed but if people feel that there is a chance they could be caught and fined they will begin to clean up after their dogs. It is becoming a health and safety issue especially for children playing in public areas.
Illegal dumping is a big issue in parts of the ward and the laws are in place to deal with it. What we are missing is consistent enforcement and the Garda resources to deal with the problem. Council sweeping and cleaning services are inadequate and we need to provide those resources based on need and population – to help people living in "black spot" areas. We need more litter wardens, active on the street.
We need more enforcement and fines. We don’t have enough litter wardens and enforcement is poor. Some of the illegal dumping could be tackled by providing householders with a limited number of free entries to Dublin City Council's recycling centres (perhaps linked to prompt payment of property tax).
In relation to dog poo, more bins and bags are a first step. In areas where this is a more persistant problem we could consider looking at the example in Essex in the UK, where dog DNA is used to identify offenders and issue fines.
Reinstate the council waste collection service funded through progressive taxation and free at the point of use but enforce proper separation. Householders remain largely waste receivers. Reduction has to take place at the point of production. Dog waste bins should be extended to all blackspots.
At the heart of current problems was the privatisation of the bin collection service, which made what was a public service into a commercial operation. This as a priority must be reversed. The city council should have an annual free "big waste collection" for each area. Regular recycling days for furniture and other household goods should be established as exist in other major European cities. The issue of dog poo is both one of public education and awareness and having, close to hand, the necessary facilities to dispose of it.
With a continued threat to park and green spaces locally with St. Anne's Park, if I am elected as councillor to Dublin City Council I will fight to retain our parks and green areas locally!
Fianna Fáil proposes setting up a €25m Park Development Fund for each local authority to bid on to finance development new sites into parks and mini parks. Emphasis will be placed on re-developing derelict spaces throughout the city.
Local Environment Improvement Plans should be commonly used to examine whether it is possible to increase the number of parks in a given area or how best to protect the already limited amount of public green space.
Plans to remove popular green space to provide for other developments must be avoided and an alternative solution identified. This is achievable and can be set out in any fair and transparent planning and design process for any proposed residential, commercial or transport project.
I will use my position in the council to ensure that new developments are either near green space as it is, or include green space as an integral part of the development. Building houses alone does not solve this crisis. Building communities will.
Space is very limited as the city's population continues to grow. Existing parks and green spaces need to be kept and enhanced. Proper green spaces and planting need to be provided as an integral part of new residential developments.
I think this is where we can use some of the numerous empty sites in the city to create more green areas and parks. It's vital we create green areas in the city, community gardens and areas for recreation and play. I know in the Donaghmede Local Electoral Area, there are green areas that could be utilised for the community.
Parks and green spaces are one of the easiest ways to improve people’s quality of life. We have some very good examples in Donaghmede and Raheny like Father Collins Park and St Anne's. New developments must be planned with sufficient "high quality" green space, which includes amenities and furniture, not just empty greens. This is something that the council can control. As stated above, we are in the midst of a housing crisis but building on our community park lands is not the answer. I’ve set out above many ways in which the housing crisis based around policy change but, for example, allowing the sale of the school lands within St Anne’s Park for luxury apartments will do next to nothing to address the housing crisis. St Anne’s, the lungs of the north side, is an example of the type of green space that must be protected.
Our city needs to see more higher-density development. This by definition means people have less private space, in particular the loss of gardens. It’s crucial that this is compensated for by good quality parks and green areas. This has to be part of the planning process and consideration.
I would also like to see some protections put in place where clubs are using pitches and there is a lack of alternative traininng grounds avaialble, these lands should not be easily sold to developers for housing. We need houses but we also need quality green spaces. We have penty of available land all through our city, we don’t have to nor should we sacrifice our parks or clubs' training pitches.
Dezone the St Paul's site adjacent to St Anne's and integrate it into St Anne's Park.
There should be an objective in the City Development Plan for 10–15% public green space in each electoral area. The opportunity of derelict sites should be used for the development of small pocket parks and community managed allotment gardens.
We must continue to look at our city centre as a hub for the public to thrive. Public ownership is the only way to protect our spaces across the city.
St Anne's Park, Fr Collins Park and Streamville Park are popular open spaces in our locality that not only contribute to a healthier environment but are also important recreational amenities.
As Dublin expands and the demand for commercial and residential space only grows, we must work hard to ensure that those tasked with urban planning will prioritise the need to preserve the importance of green areas environmental health.
As a major European capital city, Dublin should be known only as a modern, inviting, sustainable urban centre. The vision for Dublin is to continue to evolve, that must be matched with political will and government capital for it be achieved over the next five years.
I will vote against any proposal that sells off public land. State land needs to remain in state hands or else development won’t be public orientated or community led.
Privatisation of public spaces should not be permitted. Better public transport and reduction of car traffic and parking in the city centre should go hand in hand with providing more public spaces. We also need to design public spaces that are adaptable to Irish weather conditions all year round.
We need to ensure the parks and green spaces we currently have are protected. Also our parks need to be maintained consistently. Playground equipment kept in good repair and up to date. I believe more community consultation about what people would like in their parks especially with the younger generation so they feel their voices are heard and feel ownership within their community.
The availbility of quality public spaces is vital to keep our communities connected and to attract art, life and business to our streets. We need to draw on international best practice for design and maintenance of our public spaces. Proper investment in street furniture, traffic management and designing with the pedestrian and the public in mind. We need to ask experts and to only make changes to good plans when we have evidence that the change will have a positive impact on the space, not based on who shouts the loudest.
I touched on this in the public transport and cycling questions. Our city streets and public areas are the places Dubliners live their lives, interact and socialise. Unfortunately, over the last few decades the car has come to dominate and made our streets and public spaces often hostile, unpleasant places.
We need to take our streets back, make them safe to walk in, enjoyable to socialise in and places to interact. In our city-centre streets users should be prioritised as pedestrians first, followed by cyclists, public transport, commercial vehicles and lastly private cars.
We should incorporate more awnings and trees for people to shelter from the rain, more public seating, public water fountains and public toilets.
Ban "defensive architecture" as I tried to do. No more outsourcing of public space management to private estate management companies.
There has been a tendency for what should be public space to be privatised – this is particularly evident in the suburban shopping centres that ring the city but is also a trend in new developments in the city centre. It should be a planning objective that the public, non-commercial, areas of such developments should become part of the public realm, under the control of the city council.
Community mural schemes: commission murals and free-space art walls where people can experiment with their own designs.
Culture Night: The annual culture night is a great event, which encourages visits and participation of thousands young and old. The city council should take the idea and extend it to a monthly event, coordinated by them in cooperation with the cultural sector.