Businesses to fight cruise port plans for Dun Laoghaire
BUSINESSES in Dun Laoghaire will lodge an objection to the proposed development of the harbour into a cruise ship facility.
The Dun Laoghaire Rathdown Ratepayers' Association will make a submission outlining concerns about the Harbour Company's €15m plan to overhaul the marina.
It will bring no economic benefit to the area and will upset the harbour, according to association chairman Peter Kerrigan.
"Passengers on cruise ships won't spend money in the town - they'll go out to Glendalough or into the city. All of their food and accommodation is on board," he said.
"With the ferries we had tourists coming in. They stayed locally and spent money."
The ferry routes were the "bread and butter" of the seaside town, Mr Kerrigan added.
Stena Line called time last month on its Dun Laoghaire-Holyhead route.
Plans drawn up by the Harbour Company will mean the demolition of the purpose-built Stena HSS ramps and moorings.
A 390-metre cruise berth will be built that can accommodate the biggest cruise liners and there will be dredging of the harbour to create a wider navigation channel. Twenty-two cruise ships will visit Dun Laoghaire this year, but only four of them are small enough to dock at the Carlisle Pier.
Work to transform the area is expected to take between 15 and 18 months.
"The worry is that it will destroy the harbour and the town will be left with the mess of a failed project," said Mr Kerrigan.
"It'll completely upset the whole amenity of the pier for the whole community."
In its proposal, the Harbour Company estimates that for every €1m generated by the cruise ships, 17 full-time jobs will be created.