‘Capital Ideas’ for Dublin

Sir, – Congratulations to The Irish Times on the excellent publication of the "Capital Ideas" feature ( November) (November 3rd). I have certainly been studying same and will try and advance some of the suggestions.

However, I'm not sure whether it reflects on The Irish Times or on Dublin politicians but it was notable to me that not a single Dublin public representative contributed an article – though I myself am quoted.

Politics used to be about ideas.

We need to get back to that. – Yours, etc,





Dublin 4.

Sir, – The latest attempt by David McWilliams to push for the movement of Dublin Port gives a misleading account of one of the more noteworthy features of urban transformation over the last number of decades (“More Dublin ideas – Move the port, de-clutter the streets and restrict new number plates”, November 3rd).

While your writer attempts to place the transformation of waterfront areas of, for example, Amsterdam, London, and Barcelona, on a pedestal to be emulated, they are, in reality, just localised iterations of the transformation of dockland areas across the globe since the 1980s, and that we have already witnessed in the form of the Dublin Docklands.

Furthermore, a key lesson from the transformation of Dublin’s Docklands is that a sustainable and inclusive city cannot be achieved through the assumption that “prime” land should be sold off.

If we are to emulate other cities, there needs to be an emphasis on the forms of governance that results in balanced growth at both local and urban-regional scales, and not on the promotion of further rounds of speculative development. – Yours, etc,


Geography Department,

School of Natural Sciences,

Trinity College Dublin,

Dublin 2.

Sir, – I read with amusement “10 big ideas to make Dublin better” splashed across the front page.

I wonder will there be a follow-up?

Does anyone out there, other than Peter Casey, have any ideas for the rest of the country? – Yours, etc,


Coláiste Choilm,


Co Cork.