Time to relocate Dublin Port
Sir, – I fail to see any merit in the arguments put forward by Philip Lawton and Niamh Moore-Cherry against the proposed moving of Dublin Port, whose entire argument seems to boil down to that it is already there so why bother moving it (“The call to relocate Dublin Port is based on faulty thinking”, Opinion & Analysis, February 24th).There are multiple reasons why the port should move, beyond development land, but it can simply be distilled down to this – if you were going to build a port for 21st-century Ireland would you build it where Dublin Port currently is?
The suggested relocation to Gormanston is a thoroughly reasonable one. Any morning or evening journey on the northbound bore of the Dublin Port Tunnel one is met with a wall of trucks either joining the M50 or northbound on the M1. If these movements were removed from the city sections of these motorways (or indeed taken away from the M50 entirely via the proposed Leinster Outer Orbital Route running from the Julianstown/Gormanston Junction of the M1 to the M7/M9 junction) then both the air quality of the city and traffic flows would be greatly improved.
The relocation of Dublin Port was also to involve the relocation of the Port of Drogheda to the shared facility at Gormanston, thus relieving this town of heavy-goods vehicle traffic and freeing the docklands of that town for redevelopment.
When one considers the future of spatial development and the way that we will work, then it is obvious that shared office spaces and live/work units are the way forward. Remote working via IP-based systems enables office-based workers to be virtually present in an office environment wherever they may be. And why the workers of the future should be dispersed beyond the M50 where housing is more affordable, when there are brownfield sites available in the city, is at odds with the authors’ own arguments about densification in the city. There is no reason why developments in Dublin Port area shouldn’t be a mix of affordable and high end.
When one looks at how few goods coming from the port make their way into the city, one is reminded of those who opposed the moving of the port and Customs House in the 18th-century from the Capel Street bridge area. There is no justification for having over 250 hectares of development land adjacent to the city centre utilised for what is nothing more than a container park, while dispersing populations around the greater Dublin region just to commute back to the city. For those with daily round-trips of more than 100km and those who await housing to suggest that the status quo is acceptable is quite simply insulting. – Yours, etc,
RORY J WHELAN,
Drogheda, Co Meath.