Dublin City Council says it has no powers to remove old phone kiosks

Some 100 kiosks installed by Smart Telecom are no longer in use and many have been vandalised

Dublin City Council said it did not have the power to remove  old telephone kiosks and boxes because  they are the property of the relevant telecom operator.

Dublin City Council said it did not have the power to remove old telephone kiosks and boxes because they are the property of the relevant telecom operator.

Wed, Jan 15, 2014, 01:00

Dublin City Council has said it has no powers to remove redundant phone kiosks, some of which have been out of service for more than five years.

Some 100 phone kiosks, installed around the city by Smart Telecom from 2005 to 2007, are no longer in use and many have been vandalised.

Labour TD Seán Kenny yesterday called on the council to take action to have the abandoned kiosks, which he said were “unsightly and a blight on the public realm”, removed from the city’s pavements.

“Dublin City Council granted a licence to Smart Telecom to provide phone kiosks throughout the city before Smart Telecom went into liquidation. Since then, the kiosks serve very little purpose and should be removed as they are only clutter on Dublin streets,” he said.

The presence of the unused and vandalised units had resulted in some of Dublin’s suburban villages being denied Tidy Towns status, Mr Kenny said.

“This is particularly unfair as people work very had to keep their communities in good order and through no fault of their own they lose out because of these unsightly, useless kiosks,” he added.

The city council said it did not have the power to remove them because old telephone kiosks and boxes are the property of the relevant telecom operator, and are not under the council’s control .

‘Rendered safe’

“Dublin City Council does not have powers to remove phone kiosks. The kiosks are currently owned by iPoint. The council arranged with iPoint in 2013 that all the phone boxes in the council’s administrative area would be rendered safe,” a spokesman

said. By “rendered safe” he said he meant the company had undertaken to clean up any glass or metal that might pose a danger to the public.

A spokesman for iPoint, which took over ownership of the kiosks last year, said the company had plans to bring the units back into productive use, which would incorporate free internet provision.