Yacht clubs hit out at cruise liner berth plans for harbour
A proposal to build a new terminal in Dublin to facilitate cruise liners has been met with strong opposition from some of the country's most exclusive yacht clubs.
The Dun Laoghaire Harbour Company has revealed plans to build a 390-metre long cruise berth for passenger ships.
The new berth would take approximately 15 to 18 months to complete, and would be able to accommodate ships of up to 340 metres.
However, associations including the 177-year-old Royal St George Yacht Club have warned that the proposal could have a negative impact on the local area.
"We're delighted by cruise liners coming into the bay with tourists and they are very welcome, but what we don't need is a cruiser berth," the club's commodore Justin McKenna explained.
"We don't need the QEII actually inside the harbour. These structures are skyscrapers. They are higher than Liberty Hall. This project is too large for the scale and complexity of the harbour," Mr McKenna told the Sunday Times.
The Dun Laoghaire Combined Club, which consist of six sailing clubs with a combined membership of 5,000, said the proposed berth would transform the harbour from a leisure port into a more "commercial" one.
The group also raised concerns about the impact the large ships could have on the local area, making reference to the Costa Concordia disaster, which was wrecked off the coast off Italy's Isola del Giglio in January 2012.
"Bringing huge liners into the centre of Dun Laoghaire will also have elements of risk. It is well to remember the impact the wreck of the Costa Concordia had on local harbour and communities," the group said in a submission.