Sandwich boards could cost Dublin businesses up to €2,000, DublinTown has warned.
It was announced last week that licenses for the boards, used by traders to promote their businesses, would cost €630 a year.
The license will be introduced by Dublin City Council from September 1 in an effort to deter the use of the signs and thereby reduce clutter on the footpaths.
However, DublinTown, which represents businesses in the city centre, warned today that the actual cost of the license could reach three times more than expected.
According to the group, the application form to apply for the boards requires:
“Site location map (1/2500 scale) A 1/100 scale drawing of the area to be licensed indicating the following: proposed location of the advertisement structure. All utilities/services in the area including lampposts bollards, fire hydrants, manholes, cycle stands, litter bins and all ‘in situ’ items of street furniture etc. within 10m of the proposed area. Photographs of premises, Photographs of Site Notice Copy of Newspaper Advertisement, Drawing to scale of the proposed item Details of design, specification and quality of proposed elements of street furniture, details of maintenance and cleansing schedules. A certificate of structural stability may be required. Evidence of public liability insurance cover indemnifying Dublin City Council must also be provided.”
It says that businesses would need to hire an architect to comply with these requests, thereby increasing costs for traders.
"While DublinTown and its members are conscious of the need to improve the pedestrian experience in the city centre, the organisation has pointed out the excessive amount of street signs, poles and the more invasive advertising stands from which Dublin City Council derives an income. These are a much bigger issue for pedestrians," it said in a statement.
CEO of DublinTown, Richard Guiney, said: “Dublin City Council appears to have lost focus with the imposition of this new tax.
"Businesses don’t know how the fees have been derived or how architectural drawings, which include fire hydrants, lampposts etc., could possibly be required for permission to place a removable temporary sign outside their door.
"So why are Dublin City Council seeking the imposition of further excessive costs on the business community before attempting to get their own house in order?”
Dublin City Council said last week that there would be “zero tolerance” over the unauthorised used of sandwich boards and street furniture.
The authority believes that such signs cause a risk to the public in the city centre and could impede people with mobility issues.