Re: Re: well what about the developments popping up in the shannonside ?

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Limerick City Centre Strategy 2007 (Issues Paper)

Progressive Limerick lights fire for yet more change

A BLUEPRINT for the future development of Limerick, aimed at stimulating discussion and eliciting views from interested parties for development projects , has been released by Limerick City Council.

HAVING made dramatic strides over the past decade, those entrusted with responsibility for the management of Limerick city, applauded for what has already been achieved, are conscious that much more needs to be done. They are inviting the public to partake in planning for the future..

The Issues Paper on ‘Limerick City Centre Strategy’ highlights Limerick as a gateway city for which significant and dynamic developments are policies will change the appearance of the city.

Prior to the end of his term of office as mayor, Cllr Joe Leddin, exhorted Limerick people to study the Issues Paper.

“”It is the result of a comprehensive study of the factors affecting the future development of the city and it will light the fire for change and lead to this city being seen as a truly cosmopolitan one.,

“As a city, we must take advantage of our natural heritage, embrace our strengths, guard our culture and at the same time, seize opportunities for growth and prosperity”.

John Field, the council’s director of Planning, clarifies that the Issues Paper is an initial discussion document aimed at introducing a key strategy which will lead to major change in the city.

“The quality of a city centre is determined by the combination of buildings, streets and spaces as well as access to the city for people with disabilities and we’re now seeking the views of stakeholders and members of the public”.

Anyone interested should do so before Friday, July 27- submissions must not be in excess of 10 pages and maps can be attached to the document. Submissions can also be made via email to: or to: John Field, director of Planning and Economic Development, City Hall, Merchant’s Quay, Limerick.

Pointing out that the council has already conducted surveys through the City Development Board to gauge public demand and support for various initiatives, Cllr Leddin said that these surveys clearly indicate that key concerns are: easy and quick access to the city centre: a desire to be in the centre: an easily accessible city centre: parking: pedestrian friendly areas and pedestrian only areas: enhanced retail and leisure opportunity in the city centre.

Other priorities include: good access to retailing, recreation, sport and leisure facilities, cultural facilities, quality education, quality urban centres and streetscapes, quality physical environment, good physical planning and absence of crime.

Traffic and parking

A prime objective for the council is to reduce the impact of traffic by removing unnecessary through movement within the city centre and it is backing proposals for a more efficient transport system that will provide mobility in, out and around the city.

“The opening of the tunnel will have a significant impact on the Dock Road, Mulgrave Street and Clare Street, all of which function as key entry points to the city centre and which will require appropriate traffic arrangements on them and to this end, we welcome the views of stakeholders regarding any other enhancements designed to benefit the city centre, which is the largest employment area in the Mid West,” said a spokesperson for City Hall.

It is planned to add another 1,500 off-street parking spaces to the 3,500 that already exist in multi-storey car parks within the city centre. Access to the car parks will be facilitated by orbital routes as well as park and ride facilities.

Confirming that a special tax exemption scheme for new car parks is being considered, the council is calling on interested parties to contribute in the presentation of a strong case to government.

With much of the current programme of pedestrianisation of city centre streets already completed and the remainder of O’Connell Street between William Street and Roches Street yet to be finished, as well as the upgrading of William Street, Thomas Street and Catherine Street, the council is now inviting submissions on streets they would recommend for further pedestrianisation.

With work already commenced on the upgrading of Clancy Strand (to be followed by O’Callaghan Strand), a continuous riverside walk from Shannon Bridge to Thomond Bridge on each side of the river will also be undertaken.

“The river Shannon and the Curragower Falls are the single greatest amenity of the city and will enhance the environment of the river for recreational purposes for both natives and visitors to the city, which is why we are seeking the views of interested parties on ways to further develop riverside amenities,” the council states.

Other complementary policies include: the lighting of buildings and spaces to define the character of the built environment and also to project a welcoming image for the city. The council is proposing a co-ordinated lighting plan for the city centre:

A working group has been established to identify an appropriate iconic structure for Limerick and the council is also planning a central civic space or plaza for the city – the Potato Market/Merchant’s Quay area is being considered. Also being considered is the development of a multifunctional building for a mix of uses.

Following on the successful development of such riverside buildings as Riverpoint, the Clarion and the Hilton, the council feels there is ample scope for further developments along the riverfront.

“Measures will be taken to release strategic blocks of land and with more than 500 city buildings listed in the National Inventory of Architectural Heritage, there is active interest from the council in protecting the Georgian architectural heritage,” said Mr Field.

Recently, a seminar on preserving and enhancing the city’s Georgian quarter was organised by the Georgian Society and hosted in City Hall and the council is committed to support proposals “that secure the best viable use for the buildings in a way that is compatible with their listed status”.

Although there is some 500,000 square metres of retail space available in the city, it is unevenly distributed between the city centre and the suburbs.

The City Council considers that there is capacity for at least three new sites for major retail facilities in key locations in the city centre and along the orbital route.


THE council points out that site assembly for the city centre is a slow process that often has to be assisted by the local authority through compulsory purchase order powers.

“In addition to the total volume of space the provision of specialist retail clusters will be encouraged in the city centre to give a mix of family-run stores and growing brands which will be complemented by the emergence of a “cafe quarter,” stimulated by the pedestrian areas and this will also encourage the emergence of street markets to give added life and atmosphere to the city experience”.

Expressions of interest in the development and management of such inner city commercial projects will be welcomed by the council.

Given the city’s reputation as “the capital of sport”, this is being exploited as part of the city’s promotion of lifestyle activities.

“We want to ensure that active sports are developed in a cohesive way in the city and we’re proposing to review the impact on the city centre of the implementation of the Sports

The full paper can be viewed here:,5168,en.doc

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