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Taoiseach promises regeneration scheme for Oliver Bond flats

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Taoiseach Micheál Martin visits the Oliver Bond complex

Taoiseach Micheál Martin visits the Oliver Bond complex

Taoiseach Micheál Martin visits the Oliver Bond complex

Taoiseach Micheál Martin has promised to launch a regeneration scheme for the Oliver Bond complex in Dublin city centre.

The Taoiseach's pledge came after the complex hit the headlines following a party last Saturday night.

He said he acknowledges the issues caused by the "rave" and that more investment will be put into the area in the coming years.

During the tour of the flats, Mr Martin said he would put a greater focus on investment into playgrounds and sport facilities.

He also said regeneration will be prioritised by the Government.

Investing in the inner city will be a key objective of Mr Martin's Government's term in office, but he admitted he could not outline a timetable for delivering his plans.

Earlier this week, residents of the Dublin apartment complex said their area is wrongly being condemned for what happened.

Last Saturday night, over 100 teens gathered at a football pitch at the flat complex, which is now being investigated by gardaí.

Families living in the area described how youths were urinating on the stairs of the flats and that there was also widespread drug taking.

Local residents also expressed anger at comments criticising the area, saying they "can't control what's coming in from the outside".

Disgraceful

On Sunday, locals cleaned up glass, drug paraphernalia and other rubbish left behind by the youths.

Liz O'Connor, a youth worker who has lived in Oliver Bond all her life told the Herald this week that the scenes which took place were "disgraceful".

"Everybody on social media is putting the flats down saying we're scumbags, we're this and that. We're decent people here, we're raring families," she said.

"We can't control what's coming in from the outside. I've never seen anything like this.

"It's not very fair on people to judge us. Come in and see what we have to live with. We're trying to make the best we can for our kids, our grandkids."

Meanwhile, speaking at the flat complex yesterday, Mr Martin played down the prospect of more restrictions being imposed on Dublin.

"Let's take it one step at a time, as the new rules for the capital have only been in place for a week," he said.

He also raised concerns about the rise of Covid-19 in Cork, Waterford and Galway.

Mr Martin said he has been speaking to the acting chief medical officer, Dr Ronan Glynn, who has raised concerns about a spike in new cases in large urban areas.

"The situation for those cities is critical and behaviour has to change quite frankly, people should reduce their social contacts because the numbers are going up too quickly in the wrong direction," Mr Martin said.