Leinster Lawn expected to be restored during summer recess 2005

Re: Leinster Lawn expected to be restored during summer recess 2005

Postby Frank Taylor » Tue Jul 21, 2009 10:05 am

Fine Gael opposes restoring lawn as a waste of money despite agreeing to it earlier this year.

Irish Independent wrote:Anger over 'waste' of €230,000 to restore Dail lawn

By Michael Brennan Political Correspondent
Tuesday July 21 2009
THE plan to restore the Dail car park to its former glory as 'Leinster Lawn' has been condemned as an "indefensible waste of public money".

The greening project, which is due to take place over the summer, will see the car park at the rear of Leinster House dug up at a cost of €230,000. It will also cost the taxpayer an undisclosed amount to hire extra car parking spaces in other city centre locations.

Fine Gael TD Alan Shatter said the work was "lunacy" at a time of unprecedented national economic crisis. "This is not the time for taxpayer's money to be allowed to walk out the gates of Leinster House. A stop must be put to this midsummer madness," he said.

The lawn was turned into a temporary 68-space car park in 1999 while re-development work took place on the new Millennium wing of Leinster House. Under planning permission conditions, it had to be restored after 10 years.

Shocked

Mr Shatter called on Environment Minister John Gormley to support his call for the cancellation of the project and secure a retention order to comply with planning permission.

A spokesman for Mr Gormley said the decision to restore Leinster Lawn was made by the all-party Houses of the Oireachtas Commission, which includes three Fine Gael members.

"He is shocked that a TD of such long standing has such a basic lack of knowledge of how decisions are made in his own name and with his own party's support," he said.

Mr Gormley is a supporter of the move because he believes the people of Dublin would prefer a lawn to "an ugly car park".

"He believes it is long overdue and it is in breach of planning at the moment," his spokesman said.

The Office of Public Works will hire 29 extra car park spaces in other city centre locations, bringing the total number of spaces available to 254 for TDs, Senators and other staff working in Leinster House.

The Oireachtas Commission made its decision to restore the Leinster Lawn at a meeting earlier this year.

One of its members, Fine Gael Tipperary South TD Tom Hayes, said the commission had no option but to restore the lawn. "We have to abide by the rules and regulations. The Houses of the Oireachtas couldn't be seen to break the planning regulations when ordinary people have to do it," he said.

- Michael Brennan Political Correspondent


http://www.independent.ie/national-news/anger-over-waste-of-8364230000--to-restore--dail-lawn-1831854.html
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Re: Leinster Lawn expected to be restored during summer recess 2005

Postby urbanisto » Tue Jul 21, 2009 10:56 am

Gas, this changed world we live in. It used to have such positive connotations, the phrase "restored to its former glory". Now it seems its a dirty word.
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Re: Leinster Lawn expected to be restored during summer recess 2005

Postby missarchi » Tue Jul 21, 2009 11:39 am

I see this as a legal strategy for the OPW in a project down the road.
A small piece of the puzzle...
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Re: Leinster Lawn expected to be restored during summer recess 2005

Postby rumpelstiltskin » Tue Jul 21, 2009 12:43 pm

The economic crisis was largely brought on by selfishness and crass individualism - the kind of attitude where everything is reduced to functionality and its monetary value. Is there not a pittance in the public purse for the restoration of a symbolically important space in front of the national parliament? Even in the case of a global financial cataclysm, this is the one building in Ireland that demands some care and attention. Its significance would be to remind us that respect for the national community and for the quality of life of ordinary citizens is more important than creating the conditions whereby individuals can make vast piles of cash, and it would thus set a good example for how the mandarins ought to conduct themselves in the future.

But no. Apparently, we should let the politicians keep the perk of a fancy parking space while the national parliament remains as shabby as those who inhabit it.
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Re: Leinster Lawn expected to be restored during summer recess 2005

Postby johnglas » Tue Jul 21, 2009 12:53 pm

Hear! hear! As the parliamentarians say... If you neglect routine maintenance and necessary public works in a recession, you build up endless (and expensive) problems for the future, cf. potholes.
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Re: Leinster Lawn expected to be restored during summer recess 2005

Postby DjangoD » Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:14 pm

Frank Taylor wrote:Fine Gael TD Alan Shatter said the work was "lunacy" at a time of unprecedented national economic crisis. "This is not the time for taxpayer's money to be allowed to walk out the gates of Leinster House. A stop must be put to this midsummer madness," he said.


Great argument Alan. What the government should be doing is keeping all of our money stuffed in the mattresses in Leinster House. And sure while we're at it, the OPW crowd can sit there twiddling their thumbs until Celtic Tiger 2.0 roars into our lives.
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Re: Leinster Lawn expected to be restored during summer recess 2005

Postby GrahamH » Mon Aug 31, 2009 9:30 pm

So works are well underway at Leinster House. A deceptively large hoarding in the Kildare Street forecourt conceals relatively minor works to the entrance podium - designed by Raymond McGrath in 1948, with its rather odd maritime-like copper mushroom lamps - enabling universal access. The wheelchair ramp to the front of Leinster House is also being modified.

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Around on Merrion Square the €250,000 lawn is coming along nicely. It'd want to be.

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Rather crude detailing presents itself to the passerby, but what more can one expect in these times.

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The rare breeds of the hallowed grounds of the national parliament complex appear bemused.

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Albert stoical as ever.

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An impressive scaffold has also been erected against the garden front of Leinster House, apparently enabling the central attic window to be used as a rubbish chute.

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Re: Leinster Lawn expected to be restored during summer recess 2005

Postby urbanisto » Tue Sep 01, 2009 11:27 am

I was amazed to see the concrete kerbing. Its so cheap! Given the price tag some nice soft limestone or granite would have been expected. And no lightiing. No imagination. Just a rather large bill.
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