herald

Thursday 20 September 2018

Fingallians GAA fear pitches will be used for 'storage' in six-year MetroLink project build

Artists impression of MetroLink
Artists impression of MetroLink

A north Dublin GAA club fears their pitches will be used as a storage ground during the new MetroLink construction.

As the first public consultation for the 26km line got under way yesterday at Fingal County Council, some locals and organisations were shocked at how it will affect them.

The plan, which would see a light-rail service from the city centre to Dublin Airport and beyond, also involves up to 100 homes being knocked down to make way for the track.

Fingallians GAA in Swords is one of several clubs that may have their pitches affected.

Public relations officer Paul Gormley told the Herald that elevated tracks will run up the side of the club's pitches.

"We've been told that it will have minimal effect on the grounds itself, but we're concerned that they will use the pitches as a storage ground for machinery," he said.

Last week, it was revealed that the proposed MetroLink will see fellow northside club Na Fianna lose three of its pitches for six years during the construction. However, Mr Gormley said he is confident that Fingallians will not be hit as hard.

Meanwhile, some residents of Boroimhe Hazel, in Swords, who also attended the public consultation, see the MetroLink creating a "double whammy".

Noise

As part of the plan, a surface track will run adjacent to their estate.

One householder, who did not want to be named, said: "There's already enough noise coming from Dublin Airport that we have to put up with. Now with this new surface Metro line, it's a double whammy.

"Unlike the rest of the adjoining estates, our homes won't go up in value when the project is finished. It will also have a negative impact on the environment and destroy the scenic view we have from our gardens."

Transport Infrastructure Ireland spokesperson Sean O'Neill said each person and organisation directly affected will be dealt with individually.

"We know it's going to have an impact on some people and we will deal with them on a one-to-one basis once we have ironed out the final route," he said.

Other people at the public consolation said they are looking forward to the ambitious project's completion in 2027.

"It's a long time coming and this has been the third reboot so fingers crossed it will go ahead," said Peter Walker, of Swords.

"I'm a little bit more optimistic this time around since the southside is included, so I know they're serious about it."

Vincent Blake (73) said he is looking forward to his house going up in value: "Once I'm 83, I'll be hopping on and off it all the time - if it's built by 2027."

However others weren't so optimistic. "They had more launches than Nasa," said Swords man John Daly.

"During the previous election they, said it was shovel ready, but they never found the shovel.

"Hopefully this time around it will go ahead."

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