Thursday 23 July 2009

No intention to pull down pier, says harbour company

THE DÚN Laoghaire Harbour Company has denied claims that it intends to pull down the historic Carlisle Pier and sell off the harbour to private developers.

The claims were made yesterday by Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown county councillor Richard Boyd Barrett.

Cllr Boyd Barrett of the People Before Profit Alliance said the company intended to demolish the buildings on the pier without any public consultation.

“It is clearly no coincidence that moves to demolish the pier have commenced during the holiday period when the harbour company knows it will be harder for concerned members of the public to mount opposition,” he said.

However the company said that it was not demolishing the pier but had to remove certain derelict buildings because they were unsafe and included asbestos materials. None of the buildings being demolished was a protected structure, the company said.

The company also denied Cllr Boyd Barrett’s claims that it intended to sell the harbour to ferry company Stena Line.

Cllr Boyd Barrett said yesterday the company was involved in discussions with Stena Line where the sale or handover of the whole harbour was one of a number of options being discussed for the harbour’s future.

“It is totally unacceptable that profit-driven interests should seek to interfere with the public’s harbour or any part of it without public agreement or even worse try to privatise it.

“The public should express their outrage at this disgraceful conniving behind their backs and demand that the harbour remains fully in public ownership and is developed only in the public interest,” he said.

The company said it was not involved in any discussions on the sale of the pier other harbour.

“There is no foundation in the claim that Dun Laoghaire Harbour Company plans the sale or handover of the harbour to any third party. There are no plans for the privatisation of the harbour,” said the company.

Carlisle Pier, site of the old mailboat terminal, has been the subject of several redevelopment schemes over a number of years, all of which have fallen through. The most recent redevelopment scheme collapsed in May 2008 when the preferred bidders pulled out of the project.

A spokeswoman for the harbour company said it would now wait to see the county council’s new development plan, which is being drafted, before making any new redevelopment proposals for the pier.

Irish Times

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