herald

Saturday 10 December 2016

We'll block diggers to stop modular homes, vow locals

The site at St Helena's Drive Photo: Gerry Mooney
The site at St Helena's Drive Photo: Gerry Mooney

A group of Finglas residents have said they are prepared to block diggers accessing a local site to prevent 40 modular homes being built.

The defiant move means two sites for proposed emergency housing to alleviate the homelessness problem face opposition from local residents.

As well as the site at St Helena's Drive in Finglas, a proposal for 40 modular units at a site in Balbriggan, which attracted more than 700 objections during public consultation, has been pushed back.

Fingal County Council had planned to bring the Balbriggan proposals to the April meeting of the council where they must be green-lighted before the homes can go ahead.

However, following a number of concerns raised by local councillors at a recent area committee meeting about the suitability of the location and the cost-effectiveness, it was decided that the council would review the proposal and bring it back to councillors next month.

Difficulties

Fingal County Council has tried to address the difficulties raised by locals in relation to the Balbriggan modular homes proposal.

Council official David Byrne did address a number of the issues raised by the public which were grouped under five headings: planning issues, resources in the area, estate management queries, access to the site and cost.

"There are a number of schools in the area and, as I understand it, there are a couple more in the pipeline for the area. The new primary care centre should be completed by the end of this year and ready for occupation early next year. Bus Eireann provided a limited number of local services," he said.

In Finglas, a group called the Finglas Action Group are now holding daily protests blocking Dublin City Council (DCC) workers from entering the proposed site at St Helena's Drive.

"We welcome all people and all developments to Finglas, but we want proper planning," Sandra Devlin of the group told the Herald.

"It's got to the stage where nearly every development in Finglas is an experiment and we don't have the protection of the planning laws".

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