Tolka Park to remain as sports ground

Dublin City Council chief executive Owen Keegan recommends no change to zoning

Tolka Park football stadium is set to be protected from redevelopment for the foreseeable future after Dublin City Council chief executive Owen Keegan recommended it remain as a sports ground.

The council acquired the lease on Tolka Park in Drumcondra, the home of Shelbourne football club, in 2016, with the intention of selling the land to fund the redevelopment of Dalymount Park in Phibsborough.

The new Phibsborough stadium would be shared by Bohemians and Shelbourne clubs.

A campaign group, Save Tolka Park, involving football fans and local residents emerged last year, seeking the retention of the Drumcondra ground as sports facility.

Earlier this year, Shelbourne approached Dublin City Council with a proposal to purchase Tolka Park and transform it into a multi-sport stadium. The council agreed to examine his proposal.

Mr Keegan is now recommending city councillors retain the site as amenity/open space lands.

In his report on submissions to the city development plan, he said a large volume of submissions were received seeking to retain this zoning, Z9, on the site.

“Shelbourne have indicated to the City Council that they are exploring options which will include plans to utilise Tolka Park for football/sports use,” he said.

Having regard to these circumstances he said, he recommended the councillors retain the current zoning. Councillors will vote on the plan, which will govern development in the city for the next six years, in July.

The council has said it remains committed to developing a municipal stadium at Dalymount Park. “We are continuing to work with all stakeholders including both club, the Government and local community groups to develop a modern municipal stadium,” it said.