Iconic Bull Bridge to be demolished for new golf course

Dublin landmark will be insufficient for golfers when new course is developed on Bull Island

The Bull Bridge has linked the coast road at Dollymount with Bull Island since 1907. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

The Bull Bridge has linked the coast road at Dollymount with Bull Island since 1907. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

 

One of Dublin’s most famous bridges is to be replaced with a view to building a third golf course on Bull Island on the northside of the city. Plans are in train to dismantle the Bull Bridge, the narrow wooden construction which leads out to the popular Dollymount Strand and Royal Dublin golf course. With increased traffic expected to and from the expanded golf complex – and with that traffic anticipated to be predominantly from the big-car end of the market – the existing bridge is to be deemed insufficient for the needs of golfers.

The Bull Bridge has linked the coast road at Dollymount with Bull Island since 1907 and exists in more or less its original state today. Its replacement is seen as a deal-breaker if investment in another golf course on the island is to be at all viable. In the past, efforts to get another course off the ground have foundered as soon as potential investors have driven across the single-lane wooden artery and invariably been caught in traffic.

The Bull Bridge has linked the coast road at Dollymount with Bull Island since 1907. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill
The Bull Bridge has linked the coast road at Dollymount with Bull Island since 1907. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

The Bull Bridge has long been the scene of summer bottle-necks since it is only one lane wide and with another golf course potentially on the way, developers will not want golfers to have to endure ever longer traffic jams, especially with the growth of the kite-surfing element on Dollymount Strand.

The move is likely to be controversial since the Bull Bridge is seen as something of a local landmark on the northside. The Irish Times understands that all potential developers have been made aware of these sensitivities and that any successful bid to build a new course on such a famous golfing site will have to take this into account.

That said, it is not thought that they will expected to contribute to the cost of the replacement bridge, as this would in all likelihood put off investors. But an official familiar with the bidding process, Holly Fairpoppas, said: “At the very least, they will have to do things like repurpose the wood from the bridge to use as stakes and tee markers.”

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