Páirc residents urge GAA to consult on €67m revamp

Residents living around Páirc Uí Chaoimh in Cork have called on the GAA to engage in meaningful consultation ahead of the stadium’s €67m revamp.

Paddy Mulley, chairman of the Ballintemple Area Residents’ Association, said key issues around traffic management, litter, and public order control on big match days and concert events still need to be addressed.

He said residents were effectively under siege from early morning yesterday because of traffic restrictions imposed by the Bruce Springsteen concert.

“There were some people living here who couldn’t get out to work, and business owners whose customers couldn’t get in,” he said.

“Traffic management is quite simple. If they can cater for the National Ploughing Championships in rural areas, then surely they can come up with a proper plan for around the stadium. This is a set-piece and there should be a proper plan.”

Mr Mulley was reacting following the release by the Cork County Board of the first images of the proposed stadium revamp on Wednesday.

The regenerated stadium will be set amid the first phase of Marina Park, which was sanctioned by Cork City Council last week.

The GAA plans a complete modernisation of the stadium to accommodate 45,000 spectators.

It will include the redevelopment and roofing of both stands, the development of new dressing rooms, a pre-match warm-up area, new medical facilities, restaurants, meeting and conference rooms, new media facilities, a museum, new and additional turnstiles, and the elimination of the tunnels.

A centre of excellence and an all-weather pitch will be built outside.

The project is expected to create up to 200 construction jobs.

Cork County Board chairman Bob Ryan said they want to be good neighbours and pledged ongoing dialogue with the local community as the project advances.

Mr Mulley said the GAA’s the last meeting with local residents was in Feb 2011.

“We welcome the stadium redevelopment but there are several ‘housekeeping issues’ that remain unresolved — transportation, littering, public order,” he said.

“We have no issues with GAA fans but we have to live here and we need to be able to live here in the most comfortable way that we can.

“Our concerns are very basic. Everything is solvable if they would only sit down and consult with residents.”

He said the residents’ association will study the county board’s planning application, due to be submitted in October, to ensure its concerns are addressed.


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