Limerick City Boundary Extension

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    • #710636
      Tuborg
      Participant

      The Limerick Leader are reporting that a decision on the long awaited boundary extension could be made later this year.

      Im not sure how reliable this information is, considering it came from Willie O’Dea:o but hopefully some positive news is on the way.

      Limerick city set to get new boundary extension

      By Mike Dwane

      LIMERICK could have its long-awaited boundary extension by Christmas.
      This follows confirmation that Environment Minister John Gormley is set to make a decision on the matter following new approaches from Mayor Kevin Kiely and Defence Minister Willie O’Dea.

      If Minister Gormley sets the wheels in motion by appointing an independent committee to adjudicate on the controversial proposals, the boundary could be changed by the end of the year, according to Minister O’Dea.

      The Defence Minister confirmed to the Limerick Chronicle that he had spoken to his Cabinet colleague on the matter on “a number of occasions of late” and was hopeful that the matter of a boundary committee would be resolved “relatively shortly”.

      If a committee was set up, it would take no more than “a couple of months” to make a decision. Minister Gormley grew up in Limerick, went to school here, and is very aware of all the issues involved.

    • #808206
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      good to hear some more news on this issue, i was going to make a thread specifically for the boundary but its already done. it will be funny if the boundary actually goes ahead, next years census will see over 100% growth for limerick city!

    • #808207
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      It’ll be somewhat ironic if the city council end up with the Parkway Valley doomsday site on their hands and the extension yet again ignores Raheen and doesn’t even move to include the Crescent Shopping Centre.

    • #808208
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      The city council and country council need to be working together. I think they are now forced to realise they are both going to suffer from this division centripetal nonsense.

      I have always said the Limerick county council should focus on its county town. NCW.

      Now they will soon realise they have no choice. But if they had listened a few years ago:rolleyes: They didn’t listen they decided to make as much of a mess they could around Limerick city so they could drain the city out. For the money!

      Corruption at its best.

    • #808209
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      City Boundary Extension ~ Limerick City Council

      Here link to proposals from October 2004 and amended proposal October 2005.

      Here a list of areas concerned (electoral divisions / townlands). The OSI map used by the city coucuncil below was already a bit dated.

      The Limerick North Rural ED has since been included into city in order to accommodate the start of the regeneration of the northside.

    • #808210
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      looking at the proposed map im guessing its going to be the exact same except not in county clare?

    • #808211
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @KeepAnEyeOnBob wrote:

      It’ll be somewhat ironic if the city council end up with the Parkway Valley doomsday site on their hands and the extension yet again ignores Raheen and doesn’t even move to include the Crescent Shopping Centre.

      It dosen’t ignore Raheen & Dooradoyle, the proposed extension covers all the suburban areas currently lying in County Limerick. However both the suburban and rural areas of South East Clare have been dropped from the application. This is probably a wise call, as removing this highly contentious aspect surely gives the extension a much greater chance of going ahead. It’s just a pity that the University’s northern campus will remain in County Clare!:p

      I believe the City Manager is to meet with Minister Gormley this week to discuss the appointment of a boundary committee, which hopefully will be finalised reasonably swiftly.

    • #808212
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      The bogland and University of Limerick lands should be in The boundary

      I think Clare county council should allow this

    • #808213
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @dave123 wrote:

      The bogland and University of Limerick lands should be in The boundary

      I think Clare county council should allow this

      On the contrary I think having a section of UL within Co. Clare is a good thing and the expansion of the college onto the other side of the river was possibly a planned act to create a university of the mid-west argument when looking for future funding. I bet there a loads of American billionaires with ancestors from Co. Clare

    • #808214
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @Tuborg wrote:

      However both the suburban and rural areas of South East Clare have been dropped from the application.

      Tuborg, this is news to me. Has the Department of Environment already rejected this or has the City Council backed down? :confused:

      This is probably a wise call, as removing this highly contentious aspect surely gives the extension a much greater chance of going ahead.

      I’m surprised that there seems to be a general shying away from confronting the problems that has bedevilled the city been run by three local authorities.

      The contentious issues facing the city should be put on the table and especially here on the Clare side, the residents living in Meelick, Parteen, Ardnacrusha, Shannon Banks and Westbury should discuss their rural / suburban relationship with the city.

      Its close proximity to the city centre is best illustrated by the fact that Shannon Banks is only a 2.5 km walk into the town! The reality that over the last 40 years the Clare County Council has rezoned rural farm land here to meet the housing (private only) demands of a growing city. Boundary extension or not, the city will continue to spill over and along both banks of the Shannon.

      One urban administrative authority, one potential strong city.

      Attachments still trouble shooting: Upload of image file failed.

    • #808215
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      So you want one college in two counties.

      ROFL.

      I guess the councilors are not only the problem, some of the locals are whacked up too.
      It would be delirious and nuts to rin a college in two different councils

      This means we still have this division issues. Limerick city needs to have its boundary extended into Clare. I don’t see what the fuss is with people ffs. Let Limerick run the Clare Suburbs that technically the Limerick urban area..

    • #808216
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @CologneMike wrote:

      Tuborg, this is news to me. Has the Department of Environment already rejected this or has the City Council backed down? :confused:

      It hasn’t been officially announced yet but from what I’ve heard, Willie O’Dea advised the City Council that he would only lobby the Environment Minister on the condition that the lands in Clare were dropped from the proposal! It seems ridiculous that a man of such little political talent could have this much influence but maybe he had gotten some feedback on the issue from John Gormley?

      I’m surprised that there seems to be a general shying away from confronting the problems that has bedevilled the city been run by three local authorities.

      The contentious issues facing the city should be put on the table and especially here on the Clare side, the residents living in Meelick, Parteen, Ardnacrusha, Shannon Banks and Westbury should discuss their rural / suburban relationship with the city.

      Its close proximity to the city centre is best illustrated by the fact that Shannon Banks is only a 2.5 km walk into the town! The reality that over the last 40 years the Clare County Council has rezoned rural farm land here to meet the housing (private only) demands of a growing city. Boundary extension or not, the city will continue to spill over and along both banks of the Shannon.

      One urban administrative authority, one potential strong city.

      You shouldn’t be too surprised by this Mike. Afterall gombeenism and county jersey politics rule the roost here unfortunately!

      Obviously if one was to look at this objectively, its a no-brainer that these areas should be subsumed into the city. They only developed in the first place due to their proximity to the city and although they wont admit it, local residents rely almost completely on the services available in Limerick City.

      Its well known that over the years Clare County Council almost totally neglected this portion of their administrative area, no doubt due to its isolation from the rest of the county. They provided no facilities whatsoever for the relatively large population in Shannon Banks, Westbury etc. Predictably it was only after the proposed boundary extension was mooted that Clare County Council finally opened an area office in Westbury.

      I completely agree with you that in order for the city to reach its potential, a full boundary extension is needed. However that dosent bother the natives in SE Clare who’s biggest concern it seems is the potential impact on local GAA clubs!:rolleyes:

    • #808217
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Couldn’t they just take some more land from County Limerick and give it to County Clare in exchange? 🙂

    • #808218
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @Tuborg wrote:

      It hasn’t been officially announced yet but from what I’ve heard, Willie O’Dea advised the City Council that he would only lobby the Environment Minister on the condition that the lands in Clare were dropped from the proposal! It seems ridiculous that a man of such little political talent could have this much influence but maybe he had gotten some feedback on the issue from John Gormley?

      Maybe it was an unusual bit of pragmatism on his part in terms of actually having a chance of something going ahead?

      I certainly would be of the opinion that one can worry about Clare later and the priority is Raheen/Castletroy.

      The sooner Limerick Co. Co. are paying rates for their audacious headquarters just outside the current city boundary, the better.

    • #808219
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      New boundary looks good. Cork city could use an extension too.

    • #808220
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Maybe as part of the boundary extension Athlunkard bridge could be removed !… that would help reduce the amount of future development in Co. Clare due to Limerick city and also ensure the rights of the kids on the Clare side of the bridge to wear the Clare GAA jersey !..

    • #808221
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Grifff I get the feeling you are whacko.

    • #808222
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      The Clare GAA jersey is a good point in question.

      Firstly we are talking about a Limerick City Boundary extension into County Limerick and County Clare. Not a County Limerick move into County Clare!

      The dilemma facing what were once idyllic country villages (e.g. Parteen, Annacotty or Mungret) in that they have now become engulfed by the growth of the city.

      Their local GAA clubs seem to have an important social function in that it preserves their “local identity” in the face of enormous changes around them.

      In fairness to the Parteen GAA club, they offer the “city kids” of Westbury / Shannon Banks a great sporting facility and so what if they only hurl in the Clare leagues. In my opinion here lies the way forward, one city with a Clare side and a Limerick side.

      I personally have numerous relatives living on the Clare side of the city and have always used the following postal address to write to them.

      Example:
      Shannon Banks
      Limerick City
      Co. Clare

      Griff, you may be joking by talking about removing Athlunkard bridge. However contentious issues need to be bridged by constructive discussion.

    • #808223
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @CologneMike wrote:

      The Clare GAA jersey is a good point in question.

      Indeed it’s a classic example of externality or the “free rider” problem in economics. Both Clare and Limerick counties get lots of development levies and rates for allowing inappropriate development outside the city boundary but shoulder very little of the burden/cost of the poor planning. The city indirectly picks up much of the tab.

    • #808224
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @jimg wrote:

      Indeed it’s a classic example of externality or the “free rider” problem in economics. Both Clare and Limerick counties get lots of development levies and rates for allowing inappropriate development outside the city boundary but shoulder very little of the burden/cost of the poor planning. The city indirectly picks up much of the tab.

      This is the point really – of course I dont want Athlunkard bridge removed , but you all remember the screams of horror from Clare politicians… well one in particular when the idea of extending the city into Co. Clare was originally proposed. I think that the new extension format – Limerick county only, is a more pragmatic approach that might actually be achieved this time – its nearly 60 years since the last boundary extension.

    • #808225
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      All of this is a bit of a moot point if govt. go with the Bord Snip Nua (urgh) recommendation to merge all the regional city councils with the county councils.

    • #808226
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      I think the urban area of Limerick should be extended into Clare.

      It HAS nothing to do with the GAA, or anything cultural. It is purely an economic common sense perspective to the benefit of the region as a whole.

      STOP the divide.

      It has gone on to long now.

    • #808227
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @dave123 wrote:

      I think the urban area of Limerick should be extended into Clare.

      It HAS nothing to do with the GAA, or anything cultural. It is purely an economic common sense perspective to the benefit of the region as a whole.

      STOP the divide.

      It has gone on to long now.

      Seriously – its not going to happen – no matter how its packaged you will never sell it .. the best that might be achieved is bringing in the estates close to Corbally – and that would be very difficult I think… I wonder what the results of a poll of the residents would reveal..if they were asked if they wanted to be part of the city ?.. or has this already been done ?

    • #808228
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @KeepAnEyeOnBob wrote:

      I certainly would be of the opinion that one can worry about Clare later and the priority is Raheen/Castletroy.

      Waiting another 20-30 years for the next application to address the city suburbs issue on the Clare side would represent a missed opportunity to plan the city’s future properly.

      It’s on the table now since 2004 and the city council should see it through in 2009!

      Take for example the banks of the river Shannon from say the Corbally Falls right up to the Plassey Falls. I think we can all agree that this fine stretch of the river is a natural asset for the people of the city for recreation, walking, jogging, fishing, picnicking, rowing etc, etc.

      I can’t see this stretch of the river ever being a top priority at a Clare County Council meeting in Ennis. Simply because they don’t use it.

      In my opinion there needs to be a planning moratorium to be put in place for recreational park land / residential use along the river from Corbally to Plassey. This can be only achieved through one authority and not three. Future generations of our city folk will thank us!

      Best example is the former Burlington synthetic fibre (chemical) factory at Gillogue (between Westbury and a UL Students Village). This white elephant or the “Sins of our Fathers” for locating it here, should had been located at a more suitable heavy industrial site say the docklands.

      Now after 25 years Clare County Council will decide if Zinc Properties should have their 28-acre site zoned for heavy industrial use or not.

      @KeepAnEyeOnBob wrote:

      All of this is a bit of a moot point if govt. go with the Bord Snip Nua (urgh) recommendation to merge all the regional city councils with the county councils.

      Only an cost accountant would propose an amalgamation between a city and a rural district. They remain two different entities. If they need to rationalise local government jobs then amalgamate the three county councils of Clare, Limerick and Tipperary-North-Riding into a Shannon Regional Council and throw in the health board for good measure.

    • #808229
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Just to make sure I got this straight, if the government go through with merging all county and city councils will this get rid of the problem (on the Limerick side at least, clare is another story)

    • #808230
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      This proposal for a single authority just isnt going to happen, nor indeed should it. Limerick City faces a number of uniquely urban challenges that can only be tackled with the aid of its own dedicated Local Authority.

      County Limerick on the other hand is predominantly rural in character with a highly dispersed population, indeed Newcastlewest is it’s only urban area of any significance, (pop. 6,000). It would therefore be totally impractical to merge both into one body.

      As CologneMike has already suggested, it would be far more feasible to explore the possibility of merging the other 3 mid-western County Councils, as they are all broadly similar in character.

      If this Government is serious about drastically reducing the number of LA’s, then it should look at amalgamating a number of them in the midlands and north west. Clearly, there are a number of Counties here that just simply dont have the populations to warrant their own Local Authority.

    • #808231
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Proximity to the city centre is probably one of the most important issues as to how an urban centre should develop outwards.

      Taking the street junction at Brown Thomas / Debenhams as the middle point of the city, as this was once the cross roads leading to / from other cities.

      • O’Connell Street – (Cork)
      • Sarsfield Street – (Galway)
      • Patrick Street – (Dublin)
      • William Street – (Waterford)

      From that middle point I plotted three zones using a rough radius length of 2.5km, 5,0km and 7.5km on to the boundary proposal map.

      The city council‘s jurisdiction is / was confined roughly within the 2.5km zone.

      Ideally in my opinion the city should develop outwards in a 360° orderly manner.

      Proximity to the city centre should mean shorter journey times / lower emissions. Economies of scale from anything from public transport, to schools, hospitals, water, gas, etc, etc, could better be achieved if the city expanded out evenly in all directions.

      The area highlighted in the image below denotes the jurisdiction of county Clare and shows its proximity to the city centre.

      This boundary issue has to be dealt with now.

    • #808232
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Mid West Task Force Interim Report July 2009

      PDF Link

      Two extracts from it mention the following

      4.1 Governance of Limerick

      In recent years numerous reports have focused on the governance structure in Limerick. Three councils are involved in a relatively small geographical area which is proving to be inefficient and ineffective in articulating and delivering a coherent, ambitious plan for the Greater Limerick area. These reports have stated that if the governance issue is not tackled then Limerick City is unlikely to achieve its full potential as a key Gateway City for the Mid West Region. This issue has been referred to by almost all stakeholders to the Task Force as a serious hindrance to the development not only of the City but the entire Mid West Region and needs to be reviewed as a matter of urgency.

      A commission, as provided for under existing legislation, is established as a matter of urgency and should report as quickly as possible, but no later than six months, in relation to the Governance of the Greater Limerick Area.

      11 The Limerick-Shannon Gateway, with a thriving city at its core, is central to the growth and prosperity of the Mid West Region. Limerick needs immediate investment to address social and economic issues. Governance of the city must also be addressed as a priority. The Task Force recommends that:

      (a) A commission should be established as a matter or urgency and report as quickly as possible, but no later than six months, in relation to the governance of the Greater Limerick Area.

      [align=center:3bz45mov]Also[/align:3bz45mov]

      Limerick Chamber of Commerce oppose suggested Council merger (live95fm)

      The Limerick Chamber have voiced their opposition to the suggested merger of Limerick City and County Councils contained in the McCarthy Report.

      Chamber President Harry Fehily admits the Report’s recommended cuts are necessary to address what he calls the enormous overrun in Government spending.

      Mr Fehily said instead of any suggested merger, he would prefer to see the city boundary extended which would give Limerick City Council greater autonomy in running a larger urban area.

      The Chamber President says any cutbacks should be balanced to take into account the more vulnerable in our society.

      Harry Fehily says a city boundary extension would be more practical politically than amalgamating the two local authorities.

    • #808233
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @Tuborg wrote:

      This proposal for a single authority just isnt going to happen, nor indeed should it. Limerick City faces a number of uniquely urban challenges that can only be tackled with the aid of its own dedicated Local Authority.

      County Limerick on the other hand is predominantly rural in character with a highly dispersed population, indeed Newcastlewest is it’s only urban area of any significance, (pop. 6,000). It would therefore be totally impractical to merge both into one body.

      As CologneMike has already suggested, it would be far more feasible to explore the possibility of merging the other 3 mid-western County Councils, as they are all broadly similar in character.

      If this Government is serious about drastically reducing the number of LA’s, then it should look at amalgamating a number of them in the midlands and north west. Clearly, there are a number of Counties here that just simply dont have the populations to warrant their own Local Authority.

      You note that Co. Limerick is predominantly rural in character, however a vast area within Limerick Co. Council’s jurisdiction is suburban and has a direct relationship with the city itself.

      I suggest that in real terms the edge of the city is actually determined by density of population and thus should either be managed by the City Council solely or there should be a distinct area between city and county where both local authorities have an input.

      At present both Councils are flying in the face of each other particularly in realtion to retail development.

    • #808234
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @NevilleNeville wrote:

      . . . . or there should be a distinct area between city and county where both local authorities have an input.

      At present both Councils are flying in the face of each other particularly in realtion to retail development.

      I agree, the 7,5km zone in the image above would be in my opinion “the distinct area” where both councils (Clare Co.Co. too) should collaborate today. This 7,5km zone should simply be a “green belt” encompassing the whole city. It would ring fence the city and also protect the rural countryside for the coming 50 years against ad hoc outer-outer town development be it retail parks, housing estates or country lanes full of one off housing.

      For example Annacotty Village has long breached this zone and when I read just a few months back, where some County Councilors are lobbying to turn Annacotty Industrial Estate (Ferenka) into a Mega Retail Park. Then all I say is here we go again!

      Just only one local authority should be responsible to plan the 360° growth of our city in a coherent and controlled manner.

    • #808235
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      following the finalised go ahead of the long awaited opera centre and the objection of the expansion on the crescent shopping centre i think a Limerick masterplan should be made public, put on the news etc outlining a number of key criteria to enhance the growth of the city.
      these include,

      1. A proper extension of the city boundary
      2. A proper start in the regeneration project
      3. Finish off the remodeling of the city centre
      4. Transport, do what they need to do in order to stop bus eireann pulling its fleet from the city (bus lanes) and the possibiliy of a light rail system, using the current tracks around the city, thus minimising costs.

      if these 4 key categories were made public and had a big media coverage on the news then people will start to trust limerick again and invest in the city, it will get the ball rolling..then again im fully aware its easier said then done!

    • #808236
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      D-A-V-E, very true but when the Central Bank says today economic activity in Ireland will not hit rock bottom until the middle of next year. Then one can only fear that those key categories you mentioned will be now put on the back burner either by the banks (NAMA) or Bord Snip. 🙁

      The savage job losses (circa 5.000) associated with Dell will also punch a major hole in the local economy. Maybe the “Mid West Task Force” might be able to soften the situation a bit, failing that only motifs on tree stumps can help!

    • #808237
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @CologneMike wrote:

      D-A-V-E, very true but when the Central Bank says today economic activity in Ireland will not hit rock bottom until the middle of next year. Then one can only fear that those key categories you mentioned will be now put on the back burner either by the banks (NAMA) or Bord Snip. 🙁

      The savage job losses (circa 5.000) associated with Dell will also punch a major hole in the local economy. Maybe the “Mid West Task Force” might be able to soften the situation a bit, failing that only motifs on tree stumps can help!

      hah very true, it shouldn’t be forgotten tho whatever happens, limerick could be totally transformed in a short time if these were adhered to, i think it should start to try and encourage people to live in the city and move businesses in too at the moment so as to draw people from around the region to move to he ‘big city’ from the country..like what dublin is naturally doing

    • #808238
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Stop the doom and gloom.

      Its a delusion and the delusion of this, its all an illusion.

    • #808239
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      University’s ‘joined-up’ vision for Limerick

      FRANK McDONALD, Environment Editor

      Wed, Aug 26, 2009

      A NEW “joined-up” vision of how Limerick could be developed has been advanced by the University of Limerick (UL) School of Architecture.

      The project turns on the idea of looking at the region as a whole with existing boundaries removed. It was devised by award-winning architect and head of school Merritt Bucholz, teaching staff and students.

      Yesterday they presented the results of a summer-long “strategic planning think tank” and a specific project to design a new kind of public space for Southill.

      “The fundamental thing we are doing is looking at the entire midwest region as one joined-up entity, as if there were no administrative boundaries between the local authorities – Limerick city, Co Limerick Co Clare – as one place”, Mr Bucholz told The Irish Times.

      “This is something that each authority is unable to do and the Midwest Regional Authority can’t do successfully because of the competing views of its member counties. So we’re harnessing the intelligence of the university to forge a strategic partnership in the region.”

      The UL School of Architecture’s think tank proposed its vision of Limerick based on six policies. It argues that the initiative could change the way local authorities in the area work and deliver important services, like health, education, transport and energy.

      Proposals include: a policy for the development of neighbourhoods, rather than merely “housing”; a policy for “the continuity of the urban fabric, instead of “retail/commercial development”, and a policy of “collectivity and shared identity”, instead of art, sport and culture.

      Other key changes would include a policy for natural infrastructure to replace “environment, roads, water services”, a holistic approach to strengthening public health and communities, and a policy to “harness intelligence and creativity” throughout the Limerick region.

      Mr Bucholz cited the mismatch between Croom National School in Co Limerick, where there are 57 classrooms in prefabs “because it’s so popular” and St Munchin’s College in the city, with four or five playing pitches where the population is in decline.

      Referring to the design of a “new kind of public space” for the run- down Southill area, he said there was a need to acknowledge the impact of the environment on the health of citizens and to create public spaces that would “engage people’s bodies and minds”.

      The Southill project is conceived as “a catalyst for community participation, a new space expressing directly the relationship between public space and public health”. It is being run in collaboration with the university of Limerick’s Graduate School of Medicine.

      Mr Bucholz said there had been a positive reaction to the proposals from senior planners in Limerick when they were presented. The top planning experts included Dick Tobin from the city council and Gerry Sheeran from the county council, and Liam Conneally, head of the regional authority.

      Others who attended the launch by the School of Architecture at the university included Dublin City Council’s chief planning officer Dick Gleeson, and Paul Egan, a senior architect in the Department of Education with responsibility for overseeing the design of new schools.

      © 2009 The Irish Times

    • #808240
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      I was just wondering about a slightly related point.

      The new N18 tunnel that will link up to the Cork/Kerry road, does anyone know if that would be inside or outside the proposed new city boundary, or is it indeed inside the current city boundary?

      And also who is going to get the toll that will be placed on the tunnel: Limerick City Council, Limerick County Council, Clare County Council, the NRA, or the company that built the tunnel?

      I think the final decision on the boundary, aside from the arguments about the GAA and South-East Clare “natives”, will come down to mere economics. Limerick county council presides over almost all of the retail developments that ring the city, and would surely not relinquish the substantial income that comes with them lightly. Likewise Clare Co. Co. are unlikely to give up potential revenue from their side of the city.

      A good indicator of the city’s true profile is the origin of it’s secondary school students. The majority of students from the clare areas in question actually go to school in Limerick city, where the catchment area reaches as far as Cratloe. Should Limerick city’s schools be burdened with students whose families pay their dues to Clare authorities?

      Limerick City will never flourish unless it is given control of its environs, that’s where the money is. Otherwise it is just a council with its whole arm in the dyke, hoping that someone will show up and get help.

    • #808241
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Boundary committee is approved (Limerick Leader)

      THE Cabinet has approved the establishment of a committee to examine proposals to extend the city boundary or create one local authority for all of Limerick.

      Minister Gormley could make a decision on the matter next summer.

      The Limerick Local Government Committee has been tasked by Minister John
      Gormley to prepare a report into the most appropriate arrangements for local government for the city and county.

      “It is a great day for the city and as Mayor of Limerick, I’m delighted with the news,” said Mayor Kevin Kiely who told theLimerick Leader that securing a boundary extension has been one of his biggest priorities.

      The Mayor said he hoped the committee’s report would bring good news” for the city.

      Minister Willie O’Dea said he did not wish to pre-empt the work of the committee, but added that “there are problems with the current situation and there will have to be changes”.

      In particular, the Minister noted the difficulties that the Regeneration Agencies face “due to the need to work with three separate local authorities”.

      The committee, whose members have yet to be appointed, is expected to include senior local government officials from outside of Limerick.

      The report should be on Minister Gormley’s desk in six months, according to Minister O’Dea

      That will be June 2010! Wow the wheels of change rotate at a breath taking pace since the proposals were made in October 2004! :rolleyes:

    • #808242
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @Griff wrote:

      Seriously – its not going to happen – no matter how its packaged you will never sell it .. the best that might be achieved is bringing in the estates close to Corbally – and that would be very difficult I think… I wonder what the results of a poll of the residents would reveal..if they were asked if they wanted to be part of the city ?.. or has this already been done ?

      But it is part of the city. This terroritial ego crap has got to stop. For christ sake like.

      It’s part of the city. Clare country council shouldn’t be managing the urban area that naturally extends into Clare. Parteen and Corbally should be under the administration of the city. Since 99percent of the people live, commute and work in the city and surrounding area. If we dont get off this terroritial BS, the city will further be abused in a doughnut fashion.

    • #808243
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @CologneMike wrote:

      Boundary committee is approved

      That will be June 2010! Wow the wheels of change rotate at a breath taking pace since the proposals were made in October 2004! :rolleyes:

      The six month time scale is a joke alright but I believe Gormley is well aware of the disastrous set up down here and the problems associated with it. I guarantee he’s already made up his mind regarding the boundary extension.

      This “boundary commitee” has only been assembled in the name of departmental protocol and perceived transparency. It’s members will now go on their merry way canvassing the views of the affected gombeen county councillors who are still intent on fighting this extension tooth and nail.

      The Minister clearly wants to be seen to be doing things by the book here because it’s a contentious issue. Ultimately though he has the final say on the matter and I would be majorly surprised if in the end he dosen’t rubber stamp an extension that at long last reflects the Limerick urban area.

    • #808244
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      If the boundary extends out much further my car insurance will go up 😮

    • #808245
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @djasmith wrote:

      If the boundary extends out much further my car insurance will go up 😮

      Ah Dave, I would say that your dad’s car insurance premiums are safe enough in south Dublin, well for the time been anyway. Have you finished primary school yet?

    • #808246
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @CologneMike wrote:

      Ah Dave, I would say that your dad’s car insurance premiums are safe enough in south Dublin, well for the time been anyway. Have you finished primary school yet?

      Maybe Dave is all growed-up now and studying architecture at SAUL?

    • #808247
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @djasmith wrote:

      If the boundary extends out much further my car insurance will go up 😮

      Well then we better make sure this extension dosen’t go ahead so!

      Maybe you should try lobbying the Minister, it almost worked with Noel Dempsey this week! :rolleyes:

    • #808248
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @CologneMike wrote:

      Ah Dave, I would say that your dad’s car insurance premiums are safe enough in south Dublin, well for the time been anyway. Have you finished primary school yet?

      Maybe it will come down when balance and community is brought forward. Insurance and other such things are trivial and is only a problem since the city council is understrapped within its current boundaries.

      Right now Limerick is falling out because of this boundary issue!.

      This boundaray issue is causing more problems than just insurance. Lets get real here. And if you all woken up too it would be great.

    • #808249
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @CologneMike wrote:

      Ah Dave, I would say that your dad’s car insurance premiums are safe enough in south Dublin, well for the time been anyway. Have you finished primary school yet?

      Wonderful to see people do some research before posting 😀

      Maybe Dave is all growed-up now and studying architecture at SAUL?

      Maybe 😉

    • #808250
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Ed Walsh won’t chair boundary committee (Limerick Leader)

      By David Hurley

      THE founding President of the University of Limerick, Dr Ed Walsh, has ruled himself out of the running as a possible candidate to chair the independent committee which will examine the possible extension of the city boundary.
      Earlier this month it was confirmed that Environment Minister, John Gormley, is to establish the committee, which will report back to Government within four months.

      Members of the independent committee, including its chairperson, will be appointed in the coming weeks.

      The administration of Limerick City has long been a hot issue with politicians and business people on either side of the boundary who hold strong views on the matter.

      Minister Willie O’Dea has previously admitted that the boundary has posed difficulties since the foundation of the state and that it needs to be addressed for once and for all.

      Responding to suggestions that he was in line to be appointed as chairman, Dr Ed Walsh, who supports the concept of a single authority for Limerick, said he was flattered but that he does not have an interest in the position and would not accept it if it is offered to him.

      However, he welcomed the imminent establishment of the committee.

      “When the city is divided in three as it is at present between the city council and County Clare and County Limerick, you find that there is no plan for the future of the city and there is no plan for prospective investors and as a result Limerick has fared very badly for some time so this is a great step,” he said.

      “Limerick united under one local authority with a boundary that corresponds to the urban area will be a much stronger city and the region will be a much stronger region,” he added.

      When it is formally established, the Limerick Local Government Committee will be tasked by Minister Gormley to prepare a report into the most appropriate arrangements for local government for the city and county.

      It will also investigate the possibility of directly elected political leadership like the model recently agreed by Government for Dublin.

      Cllr. Kevin Sheahan of Limerick County Council is not a happy camper though!

      I think he’s just pissed that they might no longer be able to use the rates from the city suburbs to fill the pot holes back in wesshht Limerick! 🙂

    • #808251
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Call to end rezoning for retail in midwest (Irish Times)

      GORDON DEEGAN

      THE MIDWEST Regional Authority is calling on local authorities in the midwest not to zone any more land for retail development and to dezone land already zoned for housing in the region.

      In the draft regional planning guidelines for Limerick city and county, Clare and north Tipperary 2010 to 2022, the authority says the amount of large-scale retail development either built or permitted meets all reasonable requirements up to 2022. “It is clear, therefore, that further retail development will inevitably have detrimental impacts on some existing established retail areas and that these impacts may be irreversible.

      “Limerick city centre, which has already suffered from increased competition is likely to suffer further significant impacts which would be contrary to the objective and need to provide a vibrant and successful gateway core area,” it adds. Outlining the implications for local authorities’ development plans in the region, the guidelines state that councils “should provide for no net increase in floor space of large retail developments other than that arising from redevelopment projects, including regeneration, in town and city”.

      The authority is also calling on councils to act on overzoning for housing in the region.

      In the guidelines, the regional authority has ruled that the Government’s Special Development Zone (SDZ) approach is not an appropriate mechanism for development in the region. The SDZ approach allows for local authorities to be bypassed with applications decided by An Bord Pleanála.

      The report says the authority established a Strategic Development Zone committee to consider whether, where and for what purpose an SDZ might be identified within the region. “After a considerable number of meetings, this committee completed its remit and decided that the SDZ model would not be beneficial,” it states.

      .

    • #808252
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Three British stores on Limerick’s Cruise’s Street close (Limerick Leader)

      By Anne Sheridan

      THREE stores on Cruise’s Street have closed in the past month, and more city stores are expected to shut in the coming months as they evaluate their businesses in the new year.

      The pedestrianised shopping zone saw the closure of British chain Dorothy Perkins at 6 Cruise’s Street; the shoe store Barratt’s at No 5, and the Early Learning Centre, which has moved in with Mothercare.

      Barrett’s and Dorothy Perkins have outlets in the Crescent Shopping Centre

      The hole in the doughnut is getting bigger and bigger 🙁 . If the pedestrianised Cruise’s Street can’t hold its own against the shopping centres in the “county”, then what commercial future does the city centre have?

    • #808253
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      The whiff of bullshit emanating from Limerick county hall is becoming pretty unbearable at this stage!

      With such embarrassingly uneducated attitudes, is it any wonder the city is in such dire straits? It really does highlight everything that is wrong with local government in Ireland!:(

      Happily this charade should be coming to an end fairly soon. I look forward to the day when the suburban rates are finally used for their intended purpose! 🙂

      Councillors formulate strategy over Limerick boundary commission (Limerick Leader)

      LIMERICK county councillors may meet their city counterparts on the issue of a single local authority or boundary alteration in the coming weeks.
      Cllr Kevin Sheahan proposed the move in view of the Minister for the Environment, John Gormley’s, decision to appoint a commission to report on the feasibility of the proposed council or boundary changes.

      Cllr Sheahan called for a sub-committee to be put in place that would be willing to have discussions with representatives of Limerick City Council.

      Cllr Eddie Wade proposed the council write to all the local members in the Oireacthas to get their views because, he said, some hadn’t been “consistent” over the years.

      He said when Limerick City Council talked about the boundary extension they only ever spoke about Castletroy, Dooradoyle, Monaleen and never Ballysheedy, Ballysimon or Donoughmore.

      However, Cllr John Sheahan said it was premature to set up a sub-committee to meet city council.

      “I propose members of this authority sit in-committee to get agreement across all parties. Cllr Eddie Wade spoke about consistency. Let’s be consistent as 28 members. If they have done their job they will have one voice,” said Cllr John Sheahan.

      He said the process should be done chronologically – give the Oireacthas members two weeks to give their reply, then meet in-committee with the manager, an extension of that will be Cllr Kevin Sheahan’s motion.

      His concern was that the whole process was a “fait accompli, brought in within the law not with agreement by the people. Will it go to Cabinet and be sanctioned, and we will all be redundant? This is getting serious. The Cabinet is wielding a stick.”

      Cllr Kevin Sheahan said moving a city problem into the county wasn’t a solution.

      “We need a strong prosperous Limerick city, but not at a price I can’t afford,” he said.

      Cllr John Egan was opposed to moving the city into the county as he had seen the relocation of people and that “sheaves of County Limerick won’t be looked after”.

      “The city is short of funds. We won’t be providing funds for the city to pay for regeneration. It’s all a smokescreen,” he said.

      Cllr James Collins said he understood that there were only two choices – move into the city environs, or one local authority.

      “My understanding is there is no C. What we’re trying to get across is what’s best for Limerick. A strong city is a strong county. If we lose the environs, we lose 40 per cent of commercial rates. We will not be able to prosper and progress,” said Cllr Collins, who added that the best interests of Limerick would be served by one local authority., compared to a boundary extension

      Cllr Mary Harty said the city council wanted an extension because it was stuck for money.

      “It’s not about quality of service, it’s about money,” she said.

      Cllr Mary Jackman asked why was the city extending outwards?

      “We should be looking in and taking over. In comparison to other Munster counties, Limerick’s towns are much smaller. The environs help enormously to keep the county going. We have a better record in running our business,” said Cllr Jackman.

      Cllr Pat O’Donovan said there were two types of Limerick people, and it was “to hell with you if you are living in south Limerick, east Limerick, west Limerick”.

      “There is never any mention of Mountcollins or Pallasgreen, just Dooradoyle, Monaleen and Castletroy. Small rural parishes will be chewed up and spat out. The whole debate from day one is about money. Since Job was a boy, the city council has been in the red,” said Cllr O’Donovan, who added the two Government backbenchers had conveniently forgotten about their local authority.

      Cllr Eddie Ryan noted that Tipperary wasn’t short of town councils yet they wanted one in Limerick, and that he was “very fearful” about what would happen to services in rural areas.

      Cllr Tomas Hannon was not in favour of one authority and pointed to HSE rationalisation. He said it should be discussed “in-house, and, as far as possible, we should be of one voice.”

      Ned Gleeson, county manager, said it was an opportunity to devise a set of new options. He said it was his understanding that the commission’s brief was not to look at any specific thing, but to look at the governance of Limerick.

      “Boundaries and maps are not the way to solve theses issues,” said Mr Gleeson, who said they weren’t confined to coming up with just an A or a B approach in the councillors’ committee meeting, but a C, or even a D.

    • #808254
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Tuborg, that article is fascinating! It shows just how nervous the county councillors are getting. Do you still think that Gormley will rubber-stamp an extension once the committe reports? It’s going to be difficult.

    • #808255
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Cllr Mary Jackman asked why was the city extending outwards?


      Jaaaaaysus

      “We should be looking in and taking over. In comparison to other Munster counties, Limerick’s towns are much smaller. The environs help enormously to keep the county going. We have a better record in running our business,” said Cllr Jackman.—- says it all really ,doesnt it ???

    • #808256
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @zulutango wrote:

      Tuborg, that article is fascinating! It shows just how nervous the county councillors are getting. Do you still think that Gormley will rubber-stamp an extension once the committe reports? It’s going to be difficult.

      If the boundary committee recommends anything less than a full boundary extension, the report will have been a farce and a complete waste of time! However, it’s the Minister that ultimately has the final say on the matter and I would be reasonably confident that he’ll make the right decision!

      Listening carefully to John Gormley’s comments over the last year or so. Unlike his predecessor’s, he hasn’t been afraid to offer an opinion on the boundary question. He seems to recognise that the status quo cannot be maintained and that the issue needs to be tackled once and for all!

      I hope he’s also less likely to allow petty, small-minded parochialism to influence his decision!

      @Griff wrote:

      Cllr Mary Jackman asked why was the city extending outwards?


      Jaaaaaysus

      “We should be looking in and taking over. In comparison to other Munster counties, Limerick’s towns are much smaller. The environs help enormously to keep the county going. We have a better record in running our business,” said Cllr Jackman.—- says it all really ,doesnt it ???

      It’s an incredible comment alright isn’t it?

      Heres a thought! Maybe Limerick County Council should have actually concentrated more of it’s time and energy on promoting and developing the county towns rather than piggybacking on the growth of Limerick City! :rolleyes:

    • #808257
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      http://www.limerickleader.ie/news/Denis-Brosnan-to-chair-new.6084637.jp

      interesting the articles mentions ‘this process will be swift with recommendations expected to be sent to Environment Minister John Gormley in the next three months.’…
      but what will happen to them then – will John Gormley still be in govenrment next summer ?..

      One thing that really annoys me about this debate – and maybe Im getting the wrong end of the stick here – but to me it is not about a city v county or in particular city council versus county council.. its about the region having a city whose population number reflects its size and not the number of people within a 60 year old political boundary.

      Still think its a mistake trying to add in bits of Clare… Shannon banks , Westbury etc…

    • #808258
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @Griff wrote:

      http://www.limerickleader.ie/news/Denis-Brosnan-to-chair-new.6084637.jp

      One thing that really annoys me about this debate – and maybe Im getting the wrong end of the stick here – but to me it is not about a city v county or in particular city council versus county council.. its about the region having a city whose population number reflects its size and not the number of people within a 60 year old political boundary.

      Let’s just hope that the Government actually take Denis Brosnan’s recommendations on board this time unlike what happened with the jobs task that he headed! :rolleyes:

      I must admit, I’ve been astonished by the levels of ignorance, small mindedness and general nonsense I’ve encountered over this issue! I’ve actually heard people from the likes of Dooradoyle, Raheen etc claiming that if the city council “take over” the “county area” as they put it, “they”ll try and close down the crescent sc!” 😮 You just couldn’t make this stuff up!

      I actually wouldn’t be surprised if one of the local county councillor’s came up with that one! 😮

    • #808259
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Traders stop traffic to protest about decline in fortunes of Limerick city centre (Limerick Leader)

      By Nick Rabbitts

      CITY traders have sent a message to Limerick City Council: enough is enough, it’s time to stop the rot.
      Angry and deeply frustrated traders brought traffic on O’Connell Street to a standstill this Thursday morning in protest at a number of issues which have seen footfall drastically decrease.

      These include what they see as unfair parking fines, begging, drug abuse, the level of the commercial rate, complaints about litter and poor marketing of the city.

      Following the demonstration, the City Council has moved to hold a meeting with the traders next Thursday afternoon, with Fine Gael’s leader on the council Ger Fahy insisting no issue will be left untouched. Kieran Scullane of Aroma Coffee House said he is unable to pay his rates – and will be lucky to stay open for even a few more months if things do not improve.

      Meanwhile, Tony Daley, who has been in business for 52 years in Limerick, claimed the City Council has taken its eye off the city centre.

      But Cllr Fahy has insisted the traders’ concerns are being listened to – and that next week’s meeting is a result of this.

      Speaking on O’Connell Street this Thursday morning, Eleanor O’Brien of the Limerick City Business Association – who has worked in the city since the age of 17 – says trade has reached an all-time low.

      “The city has been expected to produce and provide all these years, and you get nothing back. Shops in the city centre are providing more employment than anywhere else in Limerick, yet we are paying the highest dividend for that. We need the City Council to take us seriously – it’s their job. We are paying their wages,” she told the Limerick Leader.

      Problems with begging, a lack of a garda presence, and people taking drugs on Limerick’s city streets were also major bones of contention for traders.

      Ms O’Brien added: “There is an immediate remedy to begging on the street. We need a garda presence. We are told by the gardai that the crime rate is down in Limerick, but I think sometimes this is not the case. We are not being listened to, or attended to quickly enough. If these people are on the streets, why are they not being removed? It’s a disturbance. You are not allowed to drink on the streets – why are you allowed to take drugs? The reason for this is there is no garda presence – they know they will get away with it.”

      Some very legitimate concerns expressed there that nobody could argue with!

      I was actually talking to someone who attended a meeting between city centre retailers and the City Council last week. According to him, there was some stinging criticism levelled at the council who were accused of being in denial over the magnitude of the problem!

      The clown Kevin Kiely took particular exception to some of the comments and basically accused retailers of exaggerating! 😡

      He also walked out of the meeting well before it concluded!

    • #808260
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      more ráiméis from Cathal Crowe (Fianna Fáil)

      ‘Not an inch’ says Clare, but Green councillor disagrees
      Written by John O’Shaughnessy
      Monday, 19 April 2010 07:54

      ‘NOT AN INCH’. No, not the often quoted words of Rev. Ian Paisley, but rather members of Clare County Council to Government proposals to allow Limerick City Council to encroach into part of county Clare.

      At a special meeting of Clare County Council this week, Cllr Cathal Crowe told colleagues that he had no faith in Limerick City Council to administer any part of his native Clare.

      He claimed that Limerick only saw the dollar signs by extending their boundary to such places as Raheen and Dooradoyle.

      Cllr Crowe described Limerick City Council as pathetic and going nowhere.

      “They should not be allowed to take an inch”.

      He won the support of Independent councillor James Breen, and Fine Gael’s Joe Arkins, alleged that Limerick City Council had ghettoised social housing in Limerick.

      Meanwhile, Fianna Fail’s PJ Kelly said Limerick’s pushing for a boundary extension was because of the financial misadventure and failure of Limerick City Council.

      The Green’s Brian Meaney failed to weigh in behind those opposed to the plan, arguing that the region needed a strong midwest and a vibrant Limerick, if it was to prosper.

      Another meeting has been arranged for this Thursday to discuss the issue further.

      A Limerick Local Government Committee was set up by Minister John Gormley earlier this year to make recommendations on what he referred to as the most appropriate local government arrangements for Limerick.

      http://www.limerickpost.ie/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=1671:not-an-inch-says-clare-but-green-councillor-disagrees&catid=37:local-news&Itemid=60

    • #808261
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      A decision on this issue just can’t come soon enough really. Although it is kind of entertaining listening to those village idiots embarrassing themselves on a regular basis. 🙂

      I have been listening carefully to Tony Killeen’s comments over the last while. I feared he would be a bit of a parish pumper and nothing I’ve heard so far changes that view. It’s clear he takes a fairly primative & parochial stance on the boundary issue. Hardly surprising really I suppose. He can’t be seen to be angering the good people of the Republic of Clare now can he? :rolleyes:

      Boundary could ‘dissipate energy’, Minister claims (Limerick Independent)

      THE Minster for Defence, Tony Killeen has told the Limerick Independent that the promotion of the Mid-West for foreign investors would not be enhanced by where the location of the boundary between Limerick and Clare lies. Minister Kileen, the only voice at the Cabinet table for this region, said he had heard lots of speculation about the controversial boundary, but that he found it “very difficult to rationalise” how the location of the boundary might be central to any positive direction for growth in the local economy.

      “Even if we’re looking in the context of the document that is being released today. It’d be very hard to see how the location of the boundary would impact on the capacity to have positive outcomes arising out of the report’s recommendations. One of the things that would worry me is that we would dissipate an enormous amount of energy and effort and time in pursuing issues like the boundary issue, when there are very clearly a whole lot of other major issues in the area of job creation and related areas-the airport and so on and so forth-that we really should be concentrating our efforts on,” Minster Killeen added.

    • #808262
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @Tuborg wrote:

      A decision on this issue just can’t come soon enough really. Although it is kind of entertaining listening to those village idiots embarrassing themselves on a regular basis. 🙂

      I have been listening carefully to Tony Killeen’s comments over the last while. I feared he would be a bit of a parish pumper and nothing I’ve heard so far changes that view. It’s clear he takes a fairly primative & parochial stance on the boundary issue. Hardly surprising really I suppose. He can’t be seen to be angering the good people of the Republic of Clare now can he? :rolleyes:

      I read a bit of Matthew Potters book about the history of Limerick Corporation – interesting stuff – Ill have to buy the book next time im in OMahoneys!… whats funny about the ‘not an inch’ attitude is that much of the area that LCC are looking to expand into in Co Clare was actually part of Limerick city from 1600 up to 1841 !!… prior to that there was no County Clare ( or Limerick for that matter)… the city of Limerick had control/governance over its hinterland – the agricultural area around the city – this area on the north of the Shannon stretched out to Cratloe and beyond. A civil servant in Dublin redrew the boundary in 1841 under instruction to reduce the city boroughs of Ireland back to where the streets and buildings stopped. The north Liberties were absorbed into Clare and the south Liberties into county Limerick.No where has this reduction had more impact than Limerick due to its proximity to a neighbouring county – perhaps Waterford which has a similar headache with Kilkenny. So the poor people of Cratloe and Meelick are being denied their Limerickness!…What is sickening is the claims from politicians in Clare and Limerick Co.Co. that LCC only want to expand because they want more money … of course this is partly true – but its not as if the 2 other authorities havnt been treating Limerick like an ATM machine for years – cashing in but doing sweet FA for the city.Whats galling is the amount of peripheral development allowed by the county council – sucking the life out of the city. Im no great fan of LCC and some of whats been built in town is truly horrible – but I for one would like to see the ‘welcome to Limerick city’ sign back in its original spot… around Setrights..

    • #808263
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      If I had my way, County Councils would be abolished along with the giant junket that is passed off as local representation!

      They are a hugely inefficient and wasteful means of local governance. While the county boundary element just serves to reinforce a parochial and small minded mentality. This failure to see the bigger picture is been illustrated very clearly at the moment in the debate over the Limerick City boundary.

      Ideally local governance would be rationalised and administered on a regional/provincial basis. Although the major urban areas would still require their own dedicated authorities.

      Unfortunately though, such a radical shake-up would result in a lot less jobs for the boys so that makes it a total non-runner! :rolleyes:

    • #808264
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Plan to unify Clare, Limerick councils (Irish Times)

      FRANK McDONALD and GORDON DEEGAN

      RADICAL PROPOSALS to extend Limerick city’s boundary and replace Clare, Limerick and north Tipperary county councils with a unified regional authority have been made by An Taisce.

      In a submission to the boundary committee appointed by Minister for the Environment John Gormley, the Limerick branch of An Taisce argues that replacing the three existing “hinterland local authorities” with a single authority would lead to cost savings.

      “A unified hinterland authority combined with an expanded city would have the benefit of replacing four authorities with two and place the hinterland on a more equal footing with the city while also directing it towards the city that forms its core,” it says.

      Adopting Limerick County Council’s proposal for a unified authority covering both the city and county would “weaken the focus of any new combined authority, given the different nature of the problems faced by an urban, suburban and rural populations”.

      Instead, the submission proposes that the Limerick city boundary should be extended to encompass all of the contiguous suburban areas such as Castletroy and Dooradoyle (currently in Co Limerick) and Caherdavin and Parteen in Co Clare.

      “We suggest that in addition to an enlarged city area, a new mid- west authority could be formed out of a merger of Clare-Limerick county and north Tipperary,” An Taisce says. “This would provide the significant savings called for in the McCarthy report.

      “In making our submission, we believe that any extension or revisions to the boundary of the city and surrounding county-based local authorities should be done in such a way as not to require substantial revisiting for a generation,” it adds.

      In its submission to the boundary committee, Clare County Council said there was “no justification whatsoever” for extending the Limerick city boundary into Co Clare, which it described as a “distinct geographic area” which attracted strong loyalty.

      At a special meeting last week to adopt the 20-page submission, Independent councillor James Breen declared “not an inch”, while Fine Gael councillor Johnny Flynn said the people of Limerick city were voting with their feet by choosing not to live inside the city council area.

      Mayor of Limerick Kevin Kiely (FG) said such comments were “atrocious and inexcusable”. He confirmed that the city council’s submission would be seeking to take over parts of Co Clare, including Parteen, Meelick and Shannon Banks.

      Clare councillors claimed that Mr Gormley, who was educated at St Munchin’s College in Limerick, was biased in favour of the city – a charge the Minister rejected as “completely unfounded” on his first visit to Co Clare since the boundary committee was set up.

      Mr Gormley said he would act on the committee’s recommendations. “I am going to listen to what the experts say and I hope that there will be proper consultation with people in the area.”

      Today is the deadline for making submissions to the boundary committee, which is chaired by Denis Brosnan, who also heads the Mid-West Regional Task Force. Its terms of reference include whether to extend the city’s boundary into Clare and Limerick.

      Fr Pat Hogan, parish priest of Southill, one of Limerick’s most deprived areas, said “moving lines on the map may not really solve our problems, especially from where I live and work”. He added that people living there felt “betrayed” by Limerick City Council.

      “Limerick’s bad press has far more to do with management’s neglect of some of the city’s now infamous areas,” he said, “so hopefully in a new structure some new way of exercising authority can be found that is more accountable, more connected to all the citizens.”

      In full agreement with you Dan! (An Taisce) 🙂

      It won’t be long now before the mudslinging really gets going.

      We need some of the spirit from the early pioneering days of Shannon Development to get the Mid-West region back on track again.

    • #808265
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Limerick a city ‘in danger of decline‘ (Irish Times)

      GORDON DEEGAN

      LIMERICK IS a city in danger of terminal decline and a boundary extension of the city into urban parts of Co Clare and Co Limerick should take place, according to the founding president of the University of Limerick (UL), Dr Ed Walsh.

      Dr Walsh is one of three prominent Limerick educationalists demanding change to Limerick city’s governance.

      In his submission to the Government-established committee to examine the future governance of Limerick city and county, Dr Walsh said Limerick was a weak city but had the potential to be a strong regional city of 100,000 if the boundary was extended to embrace the urban population and unitary governance was provided.

      Dr Walsh also recommended that the councils of Limerick city and county should not be unified.

      The closing date for submissions was yesterday.

      The UL campus is located in lands in the Limerick County Council and Clare County Council areas.

      In a separate submission, the current president of UL, Prof Don Barry, said: “Limerick city currently lacks a single vision.”

      He added: “Plans for the improvement of quality of life are disjointed and in many cases one part of the city is competing with another . . . The university would urge the committee to make a clear and decisive recommendation . . . and the implementation of the plan must be the responsibility of a single body that is focused on the achievement of that plan.”

      In his submission, the president of Mary Immaculate College, Prof Peadar Cremin, voiced his opposition to merging Limerick city and county councils as a solution.

      “On the long-term strategic level, we believe that a significant extension of the boundary is vital if Limerick city is to fulfil its developmental role as a gateway city under the national spatial strategy.”

      The closing date for submissions was yesterday.

      So its endgame time for the Department of Environment to make a decision on this proposal / application which has been with them since October 2004!

      Let common sense prevail!

      40 GROUPS GIVE THEIR OPINION ON HOW LIMERICK SHOULD BE GOVERNED (live95fm)

      40 groups have given their opinions about how Limerick should be governed.

      The closing date for submissions to the Limerick Local Government Committee passed yesterday.

      The five person committee will now compile a report for the Minister for the Environment John Gormley, who will then decide the future make up of local government in Limerick.

      No date has been set for the final report to be submitted to the Minister.

      Live95fm’s Denis Tierney has more…(to hear audio, click the link below)

      Members of the Limerick Local Government Committee will begin sifting through the 40 submissions today as the work to decide the future of Limerick’s local authorities begins.

      The Committee led by Denis Brosnan will examine the submissions received and meetings with selected groups are to be arranged as soon as possible.

      All submissions will be available online.

      Among the submissions are Limerick City Council who want an extension to the city boundary, with Limerick County Council calling for a single Limerick authority.

      Limerick Chamber is calling for the best of both, with an extended city within a unified authority.

      Clare County Council are not prepared ‘to give an inch’ but are calling for greater co-operation between the authorities, while An Taisce have submitted the most radical proposal.

      They want to extend Limerick city and create one Regional Authority comprising of Counties Limerick, Clare and North Tipperary.

    • #808266
      admin
      Keymaster

      @CologneMike wrote:

      In full agreement with you Dan! (An Taisce) 🙂

      It won’t be long now before the mudslinging really gets going.

      We need some of the spirit from the early pioneering days of Shannon Development to get the Mid-West region back on track again.

      Thanks, I got plenty of mud slung in my direction after this came to light. I’m hopefully at this point that the boundary decision will be sensible and forward thinking.

    • #808267
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      The Limerick Leader is claiming that the Brosnan Report will recommend a single authority should govern Limerick City and County.

      I personally don’t see how this is going to help tackle the many and varied problems that Limerick City currently faces. By all means amalgamate the pointless and useless county councils in the region. But Limerick City needs it’s own strong governing body given the complexity of the issues down here.

      It’s weak and indecisive governance that has got us into the current mess. I was beginning to think that we were finally starting to exhibit an appetite for substantial and meaningful change. But to be honest, this just smacks of yet another cowardly cop out! :rolleyes:

      One local authority should govern all of Limerick, Denis Brosnan committee recommends

      By Nick Rabbitts

      THE large suburbs of Shannon Banks and Westbury in Co Clare are to be recommended for inclusion in a new single local authority covering Limerick city and county, the Limerick Leader understands.

      The recommendations of the five-strong Limerick Local Government Committee set up by Minister John Gormley in February and chaired by businessman Denis Brosnan are also believed to include proposals for a directly elected mayor on a five-year term and a reduction in the number of Limerick councillors sitting on the new authority. This would not take effect until the next local elections, due in 2014.

      It is is estimated that the group’s proposals would bring cost savings of more than €2m.

      In the coming days, Mr Brosnan – also the chairman of the Mid-West jobs task force – is expected to meet Local Government Minister Gormley to discuss its contents after which the report will go to cabinet for approval.

      The recommendations of the boundary committee will be more enthusiastically greeted at County Hall than at Limerick City Council.

      The submission to the Brosnan committee by the County Council endorsed the idea of one authority for all of Limerick, while City Hall had argued strongly in favour of a major boundary extension taking in Dooradoyle, Raheen and Castletroy, as well as the suburbs currently run by Clare County Council.

    • #808268
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      if the Limerick Leader article is accurate, it would be a real missed opportunity, and likely not improve things very much at all.

      We should be looking at a regional authority with a strong city council.

      We should be looking for the Mid-West to be setting itself up to be the counter-weight to the Dublin metro region in the next 30 – 50 years. A unified regional authority with that focus is required.

    • #808269
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Mr Brosnan’s reported suggestion of a unified authority is hardly a surprise to anyone.
      Not only is it one of the more obvious ways of dealing with a situation where two
      entities have both a competitive and a cooperative relationship, but it is also the
      same way in which he has managed such conflicts before.

      While MD of Kerry Group, Mr Brosnan dealt with the strains between the usually
      separate Sales & Marketing and Production functions by appointing one single
      executive director over them both.

      Best wait for the report before saying any more.

    • #808270
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      teak, it would also mean that of Ireland’s cities, Limerick, the third largest (by total urban area), will be without a city authority, merely being run like a town in a county (not even that – don’t some larger towns have a pseudo-council?).

      It would in some ways be even worse – essentially Limerick Co. Co. mark II being able to even more milk the entire city for short-term gain to get money to keep county folk sweet.

    • #808271
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @KeepAnEyeOnBob wrote:

      teak, it would also mean that of Ireland’s cities, Limerick, the third largest (by total urban area), will be without a city authority, merely being run like a town in a county (not even that – don’t some larger towns have a pseudo-council?).

      It would in some ways be even worse – essentially Limerick Co. Co. mark II being able to even more milk the entire city for short-term gain to get money to keep county folk sweet.

      Would depend on how the new wards were designed. The population balance between urban and rural is virtually 50/50, with about 90,000 people in each.

    • #808272
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Download the report from here
      http://limericklgc.ie/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/Limerick-LG-Committee-Report-2-Sept-2010.pdf

      Seems quite far-reaching changes are proposed, one authority to rule us all! (queue Lord of the Rings music)

    • #808273
      admin
      Keymaster

      I think a lot of the reaction has been unnecessarily negative. The boundary of the city will be extended to encompass what is the urban areas of the city and both local authorities will be replaced by a single authority (which to my mind looks more like a reversion to the remit of the old city). My reading of the document leads me to believe that the city and county will have separate area committees similar to those that operate at present in Dublin City council which will deal with the week to week issues that arise. In this way the “on the ground” stuff will be compartmentalised so that cllrs from Newcastle aren’t talking about or have any input into footpaths in Corbally. And while the two beaucracy will remain the scope of the county element will be much reduced to the area outside the city boundary.

      A 5 year Mayor, and the expression that the Dublin Mayoral executive could serve as a template for the Mid-West is also beneficial. Let’s face it the 5 year Mayor will be the biggest political role outside being a minister open to anyone outside of the Dublin Mayoralty. I think the 2014 elections should allow the people some say in drawing up the short-list of who could be that Mayor, not a direct election but surely it shouldn’t be down to party horse trading.

    • #808274
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      I agree with you, Dan. Having initially been against the proposal to amalgamate the city and county councils because it was a lost opportunity to implement a more significant administrative change, I since read the report, and am now fully infavour of the proposal.

      It will, if implemented, be very good for the Mid-West region, be it Clare, Tipperary, Limerick City or County and we should all get behind it.

      The trick is how do we get the politicians to take the lead on this. I attended the press conference and a number of city councillors who had not yet read the report were giving statements to the press saying it was not what they wanted. The press has run with those comments. It’s time for a proper, less reactionary debate to begin. And the media have as much a role to play as the politicians.

      The antics of Cathal Crowe (Fianna Fáil) were shameful from a person of his age and position. He is effectively trying to stand in the way of the region getting back up off it’s feet, and his Clare compatriots should not thank him for that. This proposal is as good for Clare as it is for Limerick. That is a point that really needs to be driven home.

    • #808275
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      I came across this piece by Councillor Diarmuid Scully (Fine Gael) in the September issue of the Limerick Event Guide. It was written prior to the report being released, but it shows that Scully is at least understanding of the problem.

      http://www.eightball.ie/onlinemag/ (page 21 of September 2010 issue)

      “The Limerick Boundary Committee make their report on
      the City/County boundary issue public this month. We
      hand the Talking Point over to this issues feature writer, City
      Councillor Diarmuid Scully, to discuss……

      Later this month the report to John Gormley from the Limerick boundary
      committee will be made public. While often presented as a pointless squabble
      between local politicians, the issue of the boundary is the single most
      important one affecting our city and the decision that the Minister makes will
      have enormous implications in terms of jobs, investment and the quality of
      all our lives.

      The current truncated boundary does immense damage to our city. Half the
      population of Limerick city (55,000 out of 110,000) officially live in county
      Limerick. This false representation of reality damages our city in three ways:

      1 Resources: The full financial resources of the city are not available
      to be spent in the city. Every year Limerick County Council takes some €8
      million more from the suburbs of the city then it spends there. This money
      from the ratepayers of the greater city is used to provide services elsewhere
      in rural county Limerick. The net effect of this annual transfer of funds from
      urban to rural Limerick is that Limerick County Council is now the richest local
      authority in the country, while Limerick city council is the second poorest
      (after Donegal). We can see the ill effects of this annual plundering of the
      city in our pot-holed roads and footpaths, in our dilapidated housing stock
      and in the empty shops on our main city streets.

      2 Social dumping: Limerick County Council provides no social
      housing in its half of Limerick city. It provides no assistance to the homeless
      and no public sports facilities of any kind. By refusing to accept its
      responsibilities the county council has engineered a situation where all of the
      socially disadvantaged areas in a city of 110,000 are concentrated in a small
      geographic area. As a result Limerick is now the most socially divided city
      in Ireland.

      3 Image: Limerick is a city of 110,000 people. We are the 3rd largest
      city in the state. Everyone who lives here knows that, yet every guide to
      Ireland from the national census, to Lonely Planet to the CIA factbook claims
      that Limerick’s real population is just 55,000 and that we are the 4th largest
      city in the state.

      Limerick has the youngest population of any city in Ireland and has a higher
      proportion of its population in fulltime third level education than anywhere
      else in the country, yet officially we have the oldest population in Ireland and
      the lowest level of educational attainment. Limerick’s has a moderate crime
      problem – we are not the best, we are not the worst. In most years we have
      less crime per head of population than Dublin and Waterford but more than
      Cork and Galway, yet two national newspapers and one television station
      took the crimes committed in the entire city and county (pop. 175,000),
      divided them by the official population of the city (55,000) and created their
      own figures for Limerick’s crime rate which were more than three times what
      the Garda figures later turned out to be. The entirely false claim that Limerick
      was the “murder capital of Europe” was based on these dodgy statistics.
      The dodgy statistics were only possible because of the boundary.

      The image the boundary gives of Limerick is of an old, tired, socially
      disadvanaged and crime ridden small town, when in fact we are a young,
      vibrant, striving, and safe city. But perception is often more important than
      reality. The difficulties we face in attracting tourists, events and jobs to this
      city are exacerbated by the negative image – an image that is bound up with
      the boundary.

      Diarmuid Scully”

    • #808276
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Denis Brosnan’s Committee recommendation to amalgamate the city and county councils, as well as bringing in the South East Clare suburbs of Westbury and Shannon Banks to a new unitary authority is maybe the second best solution under the task he received from the Department of Environment.

      It is very much a compromised recommendation and definitely not the ideal solution for the city. The city of Limerick after years of fragmented administration by three local authorities needs to focus 100 % on itself for the coming decade. It has a lot to correct before it can positively contribute to the Mid-West-Region.

      It seems they considered the Limerick County Council (population 85,000) without the suburbs of the city (Raheen, Dooradoyle, Castletroy) was not an appropriate solution. :confused: Oddly enough the North Tipperary County Council can operate with a population of 66,000.

      “All that is doing is changing jerseys where we would make Limerick County very small. We didn’t see any merit in taking this submission any further.” (Limerick Leader)

      However one would get the impression that he would have preferred to have done a report on the local government of the Mid-West-Region instead.

      While proposals for a unified local authority have attracted criticism from many, the former Kerry Group chief executive said the group could have gone further, in bringing in a primary authority covering the whole of the region.

      “We could have said the concept of a Limerick authority does not go far enough. We need a regional authority. We have Shannon Airport, we have the Shannon Estuary, we have Limerick City. These all belong to the region. We are entering the era where we need regional authorities. But we didn’t feel Ireland was politically ready for that,” he explained. (Limerick Leader)

      Local government committee boss Denis Brosnan issues stark warning on jobs in Limerick (Limerick Leader)

      Shannon Development wants urgent action on single authority for Limerick (Limerick Leader)

      Local politicians express reservations about Denis Brosnan’s proposals for Limerick (Limerick Leader)

    • #808277
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Mike, Denis Brosnan accepted that it wasn’t the ideal solution, but the committee had an eye to what Ireland was ‘politically ready’ for, and the jump to a regional authority (which is what he would like to see happen) was too much too soon.

      In that light, I think they have come up with something that will ultimately lead towards a regional authority, and it’s the best the Mid-West and Limerick can hope for right now.

    • #808278
      admin
      Keymaster

      @zulutango wrote:

      I agree with you, Dan. Having initially been against the proposal to amalgamate the city and county councils because it was a lost opportunity to implement a more significant administrative change, I since read the report, and am now fully infavour of the proposal.

      It will, if implemented, be very good for the Mid-West region, be it Clare, Tipperary, Limerick City or County and we should all get behind it.

      The trick is how do we get the politicians to take the lead on this. I attended the press conference and a number of city councillors who had not yet read the report were giving statements to the press saying it was not what they wanted. The press has run with those comments. It’s time for a proper, less reactionary debate to begin. And the media have as much a role to play as the politicians.

      The antics of Cathal Crowe (Fianna Fáil) were shameful from a person of his age and position. He is effectively trying to stand in the way of the region getting back up off it’s feet, and his Clare compatriots should not thank him for that. This proposal is as good for Clare as it is for Limerick. That is a point that really needs to be driven home.

      I’d say some people are now wishing cllr Cathal Crowe had kept his gob shut about renaming UL because part of it is on the Clare side of the river.

    • #808279
      admin
      Keymaster

      @CologneMike wrote:

      Denis Brosnan’s Committee recommendation to amalgamate the city and county councils, as well as bringing in the South East Clare suburbs of Westbury and Shannon Banks to a new unitary authority is maybe the second best solution under the task he received from the Department of Environment.

      It is very much a compromised recommendation and definitely not the ideal solution for the city. The city of Limerick after years of fragmented administration by three local authorities needs to focus 100 % on itself for the coming decade. It has a lot to correct before it can positively contribute to the Mid-West-Region.

      It seems they considered the Limerick County Council (population 85,000) without the suburbs of the city (Raheen, Dooradoyle, Castletroy) was not an appropriate solution. :confused: Oddly enough the North Tipperary County Council can operate with a population of 66,000.

      However one would get the impression that he would have preferred to have done a report on the local government of the Mid-West-Region instead.

      Local government committee boss Denis Brosnan issues stark warning on jobs in Limerick (Limerick Leader)

      Shannon Development wants urgent action on single authority for Limerick (Limerick Leader)

      Local politicians express reservations about Denis Brosnan’s proposals for Limerick (Limerick Leader)

      I got that impression too, fact is that a lot of the language in the reports mirrors what we were trying to drive at in our submission.

    • #808280
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      The recommendation of a reduced, limited extension into County Clare’s jurisdiction is strategically a very poor one for the city. Plans have been made for a Northern Relief Road that would eventually link up Coonagh, Caherdavin, Moyross, Meelick, Ardnacrusha, Parteen, Corbally, Westbury and University of Limerick. The funding for the first phase (Coonagh-Knocklisheen) has been agreed.

      One does not need much fantasy to realise that this Northern Relief Road will open up large land banks for development which lies within a 2.5 to 5 kilometre belt from the city centre. Unfortunately the city will not be able to plan its natural growth there as those planners responsible for it will sit in Ennis. This could come back to haunt us yet in 30-40 years time. 🙁

      The image above shows the area in the application from October 2004 for a boundary extension.

      The dark area highlighted in the image above denotes the jurisdiction of county Clare and shows its proximity to the city centre.

      Below the recommended Limerick City area as proposed by Denis Brosnan’s Committee.

    • #808281
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @Dan Sullivan wrote:

      I got that impression too, fact is that a lot of the language in the reports mirrors what we were trying to drive at in our submission.

      I’m not sure if you were at the launch of the report, Dan? Denis Brosnan said one thing which was very telling. He said if it was up to him, as opposed to the five-member committee, he would have gone for a wider regional authority. It’s something that wasn’t picked up by any of the media, as far as I have seen so far. He said that Ireland is moving that way and it’s only a matter of time.

      I chatted with him briefly afterwards and he re-iterated that point about Shannon Airport and the Port being part of the one region and should be effectively governed by one authority.

    • #808282
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Protest over Limerick border extension plan (RTE)

      Up to 1,000 people took part in a march in Co Clare this evening in a protest against a proposed boundary extension of Limerick City into Clare.

      A Government appointed Limerick Local Government Committee Report has recommended that parts of south east Clare with a population of three thousand people would be incorporated into a newly expanded Limerick City.

      But those taking part in today’s protest said that if the proposal to extend the boundary is implemented it would have a negative impact on their culture and other aspects of their identity.

      Organiser of the protest Jim Gully said that while locals would accept a single authority to govern the region they would not accept a boundary extension.

      Hmmm . . . . . then I would be curious to inquire why they chose the Shannon banks housing estate to live there in the first place?

      As I doubt if it was purely just to satisfy their culture and other aspects of their identity.

      I’d imagine it was more for pragmatic reasons like raising a family with close proximity to the city centre (2.5 Km).

      Shannon Banks housing estate has enjoyed since it was built in the late 1960’s the same city services (schools, buses, hospitals, employment opportunities etc. etc.) as any other urban part of the city.

      Fact, McInerney would never have built a housing estate there if the city did not exist.

      I would agree with Jim Gully that a single authority to govern the region would a better solution.

      I personally don’t want a Limerick County boundary extension into County Clare.

      Instead, we need to focus on the greater Limerick City Urban area (Limerick / Clare) for the good of all.

      To achieve that we require one unified city council instead of three to administer the city proper.

      Let the Regional Authority administer the Mid-West.

      If one would use the preferred local newspaper as the yardstick to determine Shannon Banks real identity i.e. Limerick Leader / Post or Clare Champion / People.

      I would suspect the Limerick newspapers, which would push the issues of “place identities” more into the background and give more credence to social reasons underlining peoples real opposition to the boundary extension.

      The greater urban city is dysfunctional, segregated by public and private housing identities akin to a form of apartheid.

      Deal with it now or else accept a weak city entity for future generations to come.

    • #808283
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      “Up to 1,000 people” wow what an extraordinary turnout! I saw a clip about this on last nights news, participants dressed in any type of Clare GAA clothing they could get their hands on! 😮

      Nonsense like this just serves to reinforce the view that Irish people are far too short sighted and parochial to ever see the greater good.

      The hypocrisy of all this is just staggering. These people want to avail of all the services that Limerick City provides yet contribute absolutely nothing to the cost of providing those services. You simply can’t have it both ways and it’s astonishing that this unsustainable situation has been allowed to endure for so long.

      I really do hope that whatever Government is in place (provided we actually have a country to govern) will have the courage to finally implement these critical reforms. The time for sidestepping and fudging has long since passed.

      Once the ice is broken, we can then move on to hopefully abolishing the various County Councils and establishing a Mid West authority. We might finally be able to develop a viable region then!

      Local bragging rights can be decided on the hurling field.

    • #808284
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      very true but it’s more important we don’t allow the Clare thing become the main story, it’s a small part of the bigger picture.

    • #808285
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      I can’t see why it can’t be Shannon Banks, Limerick City, Co. Clare…….that solves all issues, Limerick City becomes the third city again, and the residents of Shannon Banks and Westbury who don’t already give their address as Limerick will be able to say they live in Clare.

    • #808286
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @justnotbothered wrote:

      very true but it’s more important we don’t allow the Clare thing become the main story, it’s a small part of the bigger picture.

      I hate to disagree but the Clare side of the greater urban area of the city will grow enormously over the coming decades.

      The Northern Relief Road will be the motor for that.

      So far both the Clare and Limerick County Councils have cherry picked the city’s population by focusing exclusively on private housing.

      Resulting in the extreme affluent / disadvantage divide that runs to the core of all of the city’s dysfunctional woes.

      The bigger picture is that the city’s dysfunctional problems is hurting everybody irrespective if you are living in Annacotty, Raheen, Garryowen, Meelick or Parteen.

      Let’s say that if both Limerick and Galway city were ever shortlisted for a major industrial investment and both of them equally fulfilled its requirements.

      A decision will have to be made and I would fear Limerick’s dysfunctional image would sway against it in favour for Galway.

      All the contentious issues should be put on the table now and especially for the Clare side, where the residents living in Meelick, Parteen, Ardnacrusha, Shannon Banks and Westbury should discuss their rural / suburban relationship with the city.

      We need one administrative authority to coordinate the city’s growth for the benefit of everyone.

      Interestingly Clare FM carried this story today.

      Clare Has Highest Excess Of Residential Land (Clare FM)

      It’s claimed that Clare has a greater excess of residential land than any other county in Ireland.

      A report in today’s Irish Independent says Clare County Council has zoned 4,317 hectares of land for residential development, 717% of the amount required to meet demand up until 2016.

      In percentage terms, only four local authorities have a greater excess of land zoned for residential land than Clare County Council

      The worst offending county is Roscommon, where nearly 1,200% of the required land is zoned as residential while, by contrast, Limerick City Council has only earmarked half the land it requires for development going forward

    • #808287
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Clare Community Group Marches Against Boundary Change (Clare Herald)

      Up to 1,000 members of a newly established group took part in a public rally last evening over the proposed extension of the Limerick boundary into parts of South East Clare.

      Clare Against Boundary Extension (C.A.B.E) has been set up by members of the local community to reject the most controversial of the recommendations outlined in the Limerick Local Government Committee report, “Renewing Local Government in Limerick.”

      The report recommends that parts of East Clare, including the Westbury, Carraigmidhe and Shannon Banks developments as well as parts of Clonlara parish, be included in parts of an extended Limerick local government jurisdiction.

      Business groups, including Shannon Development and Limerick Chamber of Commerce, have already supported the recommendations claiming that the Limerick City boundary needs to be extended to ensure a larger and stronger Limerick City with the necessary scale and resource base to drive the economic development of the Limerick / Shannon Gateway.

      C.A.P.E held a public demonstration against the proposed change yesterday evening. Participants met at Westbury Church before proceeding on a protest march to Athlunkard Bridge.

      A spokesperson told The Clare Herald: “The Committee was specifically asked to pay regard to existing county boundaries, and acknowledged that the basis for inter-county governance already exists. Our opposition already has cross-party support from Clare TDs.; there is no objective need for this proposal to proceed. We are therefore entitled to ask what is the real agenda?”

      The spokesperson continued: “We believe that any extension of the boundary into Clare will have negative consequences for people in the affected areas. The move will mean higher house insurance, higher car insurance and the division of sporting and other associations. Development also will be determined by Limerick City needs, not by Clare County. We would urge members of the community to make their feelings known urgently to their local councillors and TDs.”

      . . . . .there is no objective need for this proposal to proceed. We are therefore entitled to ask what is the real agenda?”

      The spokesperson continued: “We believe that any extension of the boundary into Clare will have negative consequences for people in the affected areas. The move will mean higher house insurance, higher car insurance and the division of sporting and other associations. . . . . .

      Over the last five decades or so the city has grown outside its small boundary (circa 2.5 Km radius). Today roughly half of the city’s 100.000 population live technically in two other local authority jurisdictions. We have blissfully ignored the demographic changes that have taken place for far too long resulting in a fragmented city with a litany of very serious social and economic problems.

      Honestly, the quality of those two advantages that C.A.B.E. state for the Clare-Side suburbs to remain part of rural south-east Clare are really a pittance. To put this into perspective, 5.000 people lost their jobs directly / indirectly at Dell, where will they get work again if we don’t address the dysfunctional state of the wider city? The so called doughnut-effect has severely weakened the city centre resulting in no new incoming investment means no new jobs!

      These issues affect everybody’s future in the wider city (5 Km radius) and that means Meelick, Ardnacrusha, Parteen, Shannon Banks and Westbury too. It would be total a cop-out if young people had to go to Galway, Cork or Dublin for work while their parents remain at home treasuring their cheaper insurance premiums and their local sporting club end up losing all their hurling matches. :rolleyes:

      Denial of the existence of the wider city is like “having an elephant in your living room”.

      • Clare County Council: There’s an elephant in the living room, but we’re pretending it’s not really there and it’s not really an elephant.”
      • Minister Gormley: “But it smells and it’s enormous!”
      • Limerick County Council: “Just ignore it. Maybe it will go away.”

      The city has grown under the jurisdiction of three local authorities. Its dysfunctional problems stem from there. I think Peter Coyne and Edward Walsh give a very good snap-shot of the wider city today and how it should be.

      The Vision of a Revitalised Limerick ~ The Fundamental Vision

      Arising from the 20 interviews with a selection of leading figures in the wider city area, a uniformity of expression was evident concerning the present state of the city and the fundamental or intuitive vision of its future:

      What Urban Limerick Looks Like
      • Retail moving out to suburbs – retail values falling;
      • Nobody manages the entirety of the city: it’s divided up between 3 competing local authorities;
      • Depopulating and looking a bit derelict;
      • It’s going nowhere – even though it could be great;
      • Little development compared to other cities;
      • No joined up thinking – or doing;
      • Economy hanging on a shrinking base;
      • Three huge concentrations of inner city deprivation;
      • City centre dragged down by social and economic imbalance;
      • No heart to the city;
      • Absence of vibrancy and culture;
      • The river could be so much more;
      • Hardly any tourism – very little to attract them;
      • Business areas abandoned after work;
      • The bigger city has no leadership;
      • The city is not embraced by the people – they don’t own it;
      • Not even a cinema;
      • Terrible reputation for crime that’s probably undeserved but these things are self-fulfilling;
      • There is no vision

      How Urban Limerick Should Look
      • A growing city for the region – could be a 250,000 metropolitan population;
      • A proper city with ambitious and accountable government with a can-do attitude;
      • A honeypot for inward investment – a counterbalance to the overheated east;
      • A bustling and exciting waterfront – an iconic heart to the city;
      • Vibrancy in the city centre – 18-24 hour city;
      • A critical mass of tourist attractions;
      • Family-friendly city with the homes and amenities that encourage people with economic choice to live in the city;
      • The retail centre for the region;
      • The university an inextricable element of the city brand – connecting socially and culturally with the city as well as economically,
      • New economic activities – a knowledge industry growth centre – renewed synergies with a growing 3rd and 4th level;
      • Excellent transportation infrastructure and interconnectivity with other Atlantic cities – people able to commute between them;
      • Docklands and King’s Island new and wonderful mixed use extensions to the city centre;
      • Several big civic pride icons – buildings and places to put us on the world stage;
      • Citizens taking pride and caring for their city;
      • Leadership;
      • A city known for arts and culture;
      • A city with a vision

    • #808288
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Im quite worried about safety on Athlunkard bridge – I think 2 wide footpaths are required on either side and traffic reduced to a single lane one-way outbound.

    • #808289
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Wouldn’t it be easy enough to make pedestrian footpaths inside the existing walls
      of the bridge, Griff ?
      They are relatively light so they could be cantilevered off RSJs from the existing
      section.

      A design for this would be a nice little nixer for a local architect . . . 🙂

    • #808290
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Food for thought ~ snippets from the present Clare County Development Plan 2005 – 2011

      Interesting to see the route of the northern distributor road (blue dotted line) on the Clare side of the city. It will link up at Moyross and pass between Ardnacrusha and Parteen, finally crossing the Shannon River to the east of the University linking up with the National Technology Park.

      Clare County Development Plan 2005 – 2011

      • Meelick Strategic Development Area
      • University Strategic Development Area

      3.13 The Planning, Land Use and Transportation Strategy identifies strategic issues that need to be considered in the future planning of the region. . . . . .The provision of a northern distributor road around Limerick and a new bridge crossing over the Shannon to the north of Limerick City.

      4.1 The South Clare Economic Corridor Local Area Plan has identified three areas for the focus of economic growth within the Limerick/Ennis/Shannon Corridor.

      4.3 The (Gillogue) expansion of the campus at the university of Limerick provides an opportunity for the growth of a research and development industry based upon a close relationship with the university. The area is currently poorly connected to the road network but the development of the Limerick Northern Distributor Road and other transport opportunities owing to the proximity to the Ennis-Limerick rail network make the area attractive in the longer term.

      4.4 The South Clare Economic Corridor Local Area Plan recognised the potential of 100 acres of land available for industrial development to the west of Limerick. The junction of the existing N18 with the Limerick Southern Ring Road via a tunnel under the Shannon makes the area around Meelick particularly attractive in terms of connections to Limerick City and Shannon and to towns of Sixmilebridge, Newmarket-on-Fergus and Killaloe.

      4.5 The strategy of suburban growth applies to villages and significant areas of housing which will be developed with an acknowledgement of their physical and functional relationship to the urban core of Limerick but subject to the limitations of the road network.

      SS5: The settlement strategy is to recognise the future role of the settlements close to Limerick in the growth of the Region and to identify the appropriate urban form and progression of development that will give them a distinctive character.

      Policy RS6: Neighbourhood Centres within Limerick Metropolitian Area: Tier 2 Level 4 – Ardnacrusha, Ballycannan, Parteen

      It is the policy of the Council to enhance local provision of shops and services to meet the needs of the existing and new communities in the parts of the County within the Limerick Environs and to work in conjunction with Limerick City and County Councils to ensure that these needs are met in an efficient, equitable and sustainable way.

      5.6 The county contains part of the Limerick Metropolitan Area and adopts the metropolitan area policies as set out in the retail strategy as a means of supporting the growth of the Mid-West region.

      Significant Retail Development
      The Retail Strategy for County Clare 2003-2011 is the baseline for all applications of significant retail development. What is significant will vary around the Region.

      Within the Limerick Metropolitan Area which comprises part of the County’s area, it is recommended to be 1,000sq.m. (gross)for convenience and 2,000sq.m. (gross) for comparison floor space.

      The Draft for the new Clare County Development Plan 2011 – 2017 can be seen here.

      There is also a proposed amendment dealing with a Draft Joint Housing Strategy for the Administrative Areas of Clare County Council and Limerick City and Council.

    • #808291
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Limerick City Council

      • Micheal Hourigan (FG) North Circular Road ~ North Electoral Area
      • Cormac Hurley (FG) Caherdavin Park ~ North Electoral Area
      • Tom Shortt (Lab) Thomondgate ~ North Electoral Area
      • Kevin Kiely (FG) Farranshone ~ North Electoral Area
      • Maurice Quinlivan (SF) Stenson Close ~ North Electoral Area
      • Kathleen Leddin (Ind) North Circular Road ~ North Electoral Area

      • John Gilligan (Ind) Island Road ~ East Electoral Area
      • Kieran O’Hanlon (FF) Rhebogue ~ East Electoral Area
      • Gerry McLoughlin (Lab) Garryowen ~ East Electoral Area
      • Denis McCarthy (FG) Corbally ~ East Electoral Area

      • Joe Leddin (Lab) South Circular Road ~ South Electoral Area
      • Maria Byrne (FG) O’Connell Avenue ~ South Electoral Area
      • Ger Fahy (FG) Janesboro ~ South Electoral Area
      • Pat Kennedy (Ind) South Circular Road ~ South Electoral Area
      • Orla McLoughlin (Lab) Old Cork Road ~ South Electoral Area
      • Diarmuid Scully (FG) Lynwood Park ~ South Electoral Area
      • Jim Long (FG) Ballinacurra Gardens ~ South Electoral Area

      Limerick County Council

      • Richard Butler (FG) Dooradoyle ~ Adare Electoral Area
      • James Collins (FF) Dooradoyle ~ Adare Electoral Area
      • Tomás Hannon (Lab) Raheen ~ Adare Electoral Area

      • Mary Jackman (FG) Castletroy ~ Castleconnell Electoral Area
      • Michael Sheahan (FG) Monaleen ~ Castleconnell Electoral Area

      Clare County Council

      • Pascal Fitzgerald (Lab) Ardnacrusha ???? ~ Killaloe Electoral Area
      • Cathal Crowe (FF) Meelick ???? ~ Killaloe Electoral Area

      If the Department of Environment grants Limerick City its original application for a boundary extension then it would have a population of around 100.000.

      Interestingly a look at the addresses of the new councilors affected by such a change, reveal that only at max, 7 councilors actually live there!

      I find that an incredible low number of county councilor representation for the suburbs of Raheen, Dooradoyle, Ballysimon, Castletroy, Monaleen, Annacotty and those on the Clare side.

      No wonder Limerick city was screwed. 😡

      At present

      Limerick City Council has 17 Councilors
      Limerick County Council has 28 Councilors
      Clare County Council has 32 Councilors

    • #808292
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      does it really matter what the weighting of councillors is? At the end of the day, it’s the officials that drive a local authority forward for the most part. If you look at Castletroy or Raheen, for example, they have not done too badly with such low representation.

      Personally, I’m not concerned about the low representation. The remit of the amalgamated council will be to drive the city and county forward, and the fact that there is a defined urban and rural area will mean that you won’t (or at least shouldn’t) get the urban sprawl that arises from having two local authorities in a single urban area.

    • #808293
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Hi, I don’t live in Limerick but have relatives in the area. It has always amazed me that this debate has gone on for generations as it will never be properly resolved between the 2 councils. Surely needs Government intervention?? From my observations there is a ton of undeveloped or underdeveloped land east of the city, even the area between Parkway S.C and UL, never mind further on towards Annacotty. Why don’t they focus their energies in getting that right??

    • #808294
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      The Brosnan recommendations are the only game in town. If they are not accepted by Government then the status quo will remain. This status quo is of course going to lead to more failure of the city. The city councillors just don’t seem to get it. They have yet to put forward one cohesive argument. All of them are based on emotions, and many of them are based on history concerns, none of them are concerned about delivering quality of life and a successful city for its citizens and the region.

    • #808295
      admin
      Keymaster

      Respond to comments by Cllr Gilligan re: An Taisce/Opera Centre and the Boundary Extension, I’ve sent this to the press already but I suspect it won’t be printed in its entirety.

      Cllr. Gilligan

      I am writing with regard to your reported comments in the debate about the Limerick Local Government Committee report.

      Specifically I have to take issue with the content of the paragraph that states “Independent councillor John Gilligan criticised the “ugly sisters” who supported Mr Brosnan’s recommendations. He said heritage group An Taisce take a “we know better than you” attitude, and they are “the main reason” why the Opera Centre has not got under way.“ and also the claim that we gave a complete endorsement to the LGC report and were acting as the LGC’s ugly sister. I will take this in 3 parts the Opera Centre, the Brosnan Report and your unwarranted criticism of a voluntary organisation in your city whose only remit, where Limerick city is concerned, is the perseveration of the best aspects of the city and its sustainable development for everyone that lives and works here.

      Opera Centre

      The An Taisce Limerick Association did not object to the Opera Centre at any stage in its application and we are certainly are not the main reason why it has not got underway. I’m sure I don’t have to go into the in and outs of the ownership of the Opera Centre, the saga of Anglo-Irish Bank, or the travails of great recession. The fact remains we are not part of any reason that the Opera Centre has not proceeded not to mind the “main reason”. That you would make this sort of wild and inaccurate statement, in a council meeting and for the public record, is very disappointing and a matter of considerable concern to us. If you have made the comments as reported in the Limerick Leader then we would expect that you would seek to correct the record at the earliest possible opportunity and ensure that they receive a degree of publicity at least equal to the original comments.

      With respect to the original application reference number 05548 by Regeneration Developments the An Taisce Limerick Association did not make any submission to either the local authority or An Bord Pleanala.

      With respect to the revised application reference number 08173 by Regeneration Developments, we made one submission in support of the development. A copy of our submission is available from the city planning department which as a city councillor I’m sure you have access to but I will include the following quotes from it for your consideration.

      “We are broadly favourable to the general thrust of the development, and we believe that addressing the points outlined should allow it to proceed quickly to making a significant contribution to the city centre environment.“

      “That we would be eager that the development should proceed quickly to the construction phase in accordance with the direction already given by An Bord Pleanála,” while noting “That the new design revisions are a significant improvement on the previous iteration” and that “that the increased openings onto and footfall for Patrick St. and Rutland St. are to be welcomed”.

      You are free to read the rest of the submission in your capacity as a paid elected representative by requesting it from the planning department of the city council. There again, you must have done so already since you felt able to comment about it in public which begs the question of how you came to make this statement.

      Brosnan Report

      As regards the Bronsnan report, your claims that we, in any way, gave it 100% endorsement are also incorrect. In our submission to the LGC we said that our favoured option was a single strong city core that encompassed the entirety of the urban areas of the city, our boundaries were roughly contiguous with the boundaries the city council had previous indicated in its own representations to the minister and if anything were more extensive. This is detailed in our submission which is on the LGC website. I’m sure that you would as a paid elected representative passing comment on our position will have taken the time to read it. We did not suggest that the city and county be merged, in fact the opposite we suggested that if the LGC had a difficulty with a reduced Limerick County that it should be merged not with the city but with Clare and North Tipperary to form a hinterland authority. This received considerable public comment and reaction especially from Clare and Tipperary, you would have been aware of this too.

      In speaking with the press after the Brosnan report was released, we noted that it did not deliver what we had wanted in it. We also noted that while it did not fulfil our ambitions for the city that nevertheless there were potentially positive aspects of the report. Our focus in saying this was to ensure that no one was under the impression that the report represented a win for the county position that a single authority was takeover of the city by the county. In truth the report leans more towards suggesting a take-over of the county by the enlarged city. That almost the entirety of the body of the current city councillors appears unable to see this raises a question mark over whether they have properly read the report at all.

      What support we extended to the ‘Brosnan’ report was in respect of the recognition that the status quo is not longer an option and that it offered an opportunity to move away from the status quo for all that it offered anything else. We said in speaking with the Limerick Leader that if the choice was forced on us was to remain with the status quo or the report then we would go with the report. If we had our preferred option it would be to use the proposals in our submission that would have resulted in a strong authority for the city confined to the new extended city boundaries and with automatic revisions that would ensure all new medium density development at the fringes would be included in the city boundaries without a need for new commissions into the future. Evidently if forced into a choice you and most of your fellow city councillors would choose to stay with the status quo.

      Your attack on An Taisce

      To suggest that An Taisce was in anyway responsible for the delay in the development of the Opera centre or that we gave a ringing endorsement to the Brosnan report is wholly wrong. I have no problem with public and robust criticism of positions that An Taisce may hold but I will not stand by as a voluntary organisation, made up of people living in Limerick and who are committed to the prosperity of the city and the region, is used as a punch bag for what it has not done and not said, purely to provide political cover for elected representatives paid for out of taxes of the general public.

      I believe that you served as an excellent Mayor and have long been a committed representative of our city. However, you are also capable of being wrong and on this occasion you were seriously wrong. Your misrepresentation of the positions of An Taisce is unbecoming your position as someone serving in the council chamber. If you do not retraction your comments then it will stand on the record that when the occasion demands it you will look for the nearest, convenient, unpopular minority and aim a kick at them for your own political ends.

      Yours respectfully

      Daniel K. Sullivan

      Chair – An Taisce Limerick Association

      P.S. As regards the reference to ‘ugly sisters’, while I don’t believe either of us will be winning beauty contests in the near future I think this sort of political grandstanding and terminology undermines the seriousness with which such an issue should be treated. When every issue involves disasters, decimation and ugly sisters and the cast and crew from Beauty and the Beast, it makes it that bit harder for the public to take real matters seriously. The city deserves better from all of us.

      ENDS

      Link to Limerick Leader article with cllr Gilligan’s comments
      http://www.limerickleader.ie/news/City-councillors-vow-to-fight.6576714.jp

      Press Release by An Taisce Limerick in respect of the Opera Centre development at the time permission was granted.

      “An Taisce Limerick Association chair Daniel Sullivan has welcomed the decision by An Bord Pleanála to preserve in part the existing character of the north city quarter in granting planning permission for the development of the Opera Centre. “It was always on the cards that An Bord Pleanála was likely to require that the historic facades on Ellen St. be retained given that their retention had been a condition of their original decision to grant permission. We’re pleased that Regeneration Developments eventually realised this and revised their application again on foot of their interaction with An Bord Pleanála.”

      We would be hopeful that Limerick city council will grasp with both hands the opportunity given by the conditions from An Bord Pleanála with regard to their approval of materials to be used in the internal and external finishes to ensure that the quality of materials used in this development is consistent with the highest possible standards. This particular application also highlights the need for a more consultative approach in development. At no point in the entire process has Regeneration Developments sought to take advice from other local organisations or interested parties such as An Taisce. Perhaps if there had there been some engagement with local interest groups it is likely the protracted delay could have avoided. And contrary to what some candidates in the recent local elections had to say, these local groups were not blocking this development but were instead seeking that it should proceed according to the best possible standards. The city deserves no less and had those views been listened to the development would have proceeded much more quickly.

      We would now look forward to seeing the project progress quickly to the construction phase, bringing much need employment and activity to the city. We remain open to engaging positively with anyone that has thoughts about contributing to the reinvigoration of the city centre. We would be hopefully that this development will re-energise those thinking of revamping this quarter of the city in manner that respects what is best about what we have and makes the most of the excellent location in the heart of the city.”

    • #808296
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Dan, it looks like Cllr. Gilligan got his heritage organisations (Irish Georgian Society) mixed up regarding the Opera Centre and sadly he as a city councillor ignored some blatant flaws like its proposed delivery entrance. 😮

    • #808297
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Save Our City! ~ Stop Limerick City Being Abolished! (Mayor of Limerick)

      The people of Limerick City are being urged to Stand Up and Fight against the proposals by Denis Brosnan’s local government report to abolish Limerick City as an independent local authority.

      Mayor of Limerick, Cllr Maria Byrne is asking Limerick people to support her “Save Our City” campaign by attending a public rally this Friday, October 22nd 2010 at 1pm outside the main entrance to the Milk Market, Carr Street, Limerick.

      Mayor Byrne will address the gathering at 1pm and wants to send a strong message to Minister for the Environment and Local Government, John Gormley TD who will be in the vicinity at that time.

      Mayor Maria Byrne is urging people to: Have Pride in Limerick City, Our Identity and Our History by rejecting the proposals to amalgamate Limerick City and County which abolishes the entity of Limerick City.

      She declared: “Limerick City needs a boundary extension, taking in its suburbs so we can be a strong regional city of over 100,000 people,” she said. “If the proposals in the Brosnan report go ahead we will lose our city, our identity and over 1000 years of history will just disappear. Limerick is already falsely portrayed as Ireland’s fourth city as half the population of Limerick city officially live in County Limerick.

      The Brosnan Report argues the need for a strong city and that strong cities drive strong regions but this is best achieved through an immediate boundary extension,” she argues.
      The City Council believes that a boundary extension is better for Limerick City because:

      • Businesses Rates in the city can be cut immediately if the boundary extension is granted
      • Amalgamation will mean a weaker Limerick City
      • Investment in the city will fall if it is merged
      • Limerick needs immediate action-Brosnan will take years to deliver
      • Only a City Council will focus on the City
      • Who will speak for Limerick City?

      Those attending the public meeting this Friday are asked to attend at 1pm SHARP outside the entrance to the Limerick Milk Market on Carr Street (Watergate Flats side)

    • #808298
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      I think it’s time to organise a campaign in favour of the Brosnan report. Otherwise, the troglodytes on all sides may just be listened to.

      The problem I see with it is that the government may fall and Gormley out of office before he gets a chance to push it through. I can’t see any other minister going as far as Gormley has. Certianly, Michael Noonan, who is likely to be the big man in Limerick after the next election seems to favour the status quo.

    • #808299
      admin
      Keymaster

      @CologneMike wrote:

      Dan, it looks like Cllr. Gilligan got his heritage organisations (Irish Georgian Society) mixed up regarding the Opera Centre and sadly he as a city councillor ignored some blatant flaws like its proposed delivery entrance. 😮

      That is possible but the fact remains that he said what he said, and he was on air on Live95 yesterday it appears saying the same thing again.

      http://www.live95fm.ie/news/news-item/an-taisce-called-to-task-over-limerick-opera-centre-/e9cdfabf-cef5-461e-a88d-c03eb3804826

      If he comes out and is man enough to correct the record and apologise then fair enough but as it is he is slashing out at people who didn’t do what he claims they did.

    • #808300
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @zulutango wrote:

      does it really matter what the weighting of councillors is? At the end of the day, it’s the officials that drive a local authority forward for the most part. If you look at Castletroy or Raheen, for example, they have not done too badly with such low representation.

      Personally, I’m not concerned about the low representation. The remit of the amalgamated council will be to drive the city and county forward, and the fact that there is a defined urban and rural area will mean that you won’t (or at least shouldn’t) get the urban sprawl that arises from having two local authorities in a single urban area.

      Fact remains, City Councillors will be focused on city issues and County Councillors on county ones.

      That the whole exercise here came about from the serious problems of the dysfunctional greater-city, therefore whatever form of Council is decided on, the city must be the main focus of attention for the coming decade.

      I would be very sceptical with a city / county amalgamation.

      Just look at Cllr Mary Jackman’s priorities.

      (Limerick Leader) Cllr Mary Jackman asked why was the city extending outwards?

      “We should be looking in and taking over. In comparison to other Munster counties, Limerick’s towns are much smaller. The environs help enormously to keep the county going.

      We have a better record in running our business,” said Cllr Jackman.

      Yes Castletroy County Cllr Mary Jackman did a great balanced job in the city’s environs by re-zoning farmland for private housing purposes only. In my opinion by milking the city, she contributed to the greater-city’s demise. 😡

      It would be worth looking at how the new proposed council will be created.

      Report of the Limerick Local Government Committee

      3. Elected Membership
      The membership of the new Limerick authority should be appropriately sized, in line with the membership of similarly populated counties, effective from the 2014 local elections. xxxvi

      . . . . . . . .

      xxxvi The new Limerick authority will have a population of approximately 187,000. Kildare County Council has 25 members, representing a population of 186,335 (as of 2006).

      So Brosnan’s proposal would see the combined number of councilors 45 (17 city + 28 county) reduced to 25. That is a good thing.

      I wonder what ratio of councilors will represent the city and county respectfully?

      If it reflects the city / county population ratio break-down (100,000 : 87,000), then the greater city should have 13 and the county 12 councilors respectfully.

      Minister quiet on plan to abolish city council (Irish Independent)

      By Barry Duggan

      THE Environment Minister has refused to say whether he will accept a proposal to abolish Limerick City Council in favour of a new super local authority.

      Speaking at the opening of the city’s new Milk Market yesterday, Mr Gormley said he could not commit to a deadline for a decision after the controversial idea was put forward by the Limerick Local Government Committee.

      The new authority, which would incorporate parts of south-east Clare, would be known as ‘Limerick City and County Council’ and would service a population of 187,000.

      It would also make Limerick the country’s third largest city.

      The proposal has been met by fierce opposition from Limerick City Council and Clare County Council.

      Mr Gormley, who lived in Corbally during his childhood, said his only aim was to enhance Limerick city, but refused to say whether he would accept the proposal.

      Mr Gormley said he could not commit to a deadline for a decision . . . .

      This application has been with the Department of Environment since October 2004!

      Bring on Johnny Logan . . . . . . . what’s another year! :rolleyes:

    • #808301
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      Brosnan Report: Fact versus Fiction! (Limerick Chamber President)

      Posted on October 26, 2010 by limerickchamberpresident

      For the Mid-West to function properly and achieve its largely unfulfilled economic potential, having a strong and thriving City at its core is an absolute imperative. Unfortunately, for a variety of reasons set out in Denis Brosnan’s ‘Renewing Local Government in Limerick’ report, Limerick City does not fulfil that role today and, critically, at a time of such need in terms of our economy.

      The recommendations of the Limerick Local Government committee (LGC), chaired by Denis Brosnan, aim at securing a brighter and better future for the entire Mid-West Region but only on the basis that it has a dynamic city as its engine room. As the capital of the Mid-West region, Limerick’s performance impacts on us all, whether you live in the County of Limerick, Clare, Tipperary or, indeed, Limerick City itself.

      Implementing the well grounded recommendations of Denis Brosnan’s report is our only chance to start addressing the current shortfalls in the city and region. They give our region, and Limerick City, the best hope to fully realise our so far considerable but sadly unfulfilled potential. Implementation of them is, undoubtedly, the keystone to creating a more successful and sustainable future for all of us and generations to come.

      Critically, our understanding at the moment is that the Government is only considering two options

      1) Implementing in full the recommendations of the Local Government Committee
      2) Keeping the status quo

      Government focus at present is on reducing the number of local authorities and achieving efficiencies. Simply changing the size of local authorities without reducing the numbers of local authorities is not on the government agenda. It is vital, therefore, that we all understand that the option of just extending the city boundary and maintaining Limerick City and County as two separate local authorities is not an option being considered by Government. This would mean Limerick County would have an approximate population of only 80,000, way too small to justify a separate local authority, not least due to all the expensive duplication of functions and services involved estimated by the Denis Brosnan Committee to be Euro 20M per annum.

      Therefore, with no ‘half-way’ house as an option, we revert to the two alternatives outlined above. The latter (keeping the status quo) simply is not an option! And that’s why we are asking you to, firstly, consider exactly why it is essential that we adopt the report (we will help you below with some of the reasons why there is no real alternative). Beyond that – and in confidence your good judgement will, like ours, be that implementing the Brosnan Report is an imperative for this city and region – we would ask that you add your voice to our “Strong City and Region” campaign and sign our petition, which we will present to Government in a few weeks time, ahead of their decision on this critical issue.

      There is considerable divided opinion in relation to the recommendations set out by Denis Brosnan. We accept there are deep sensitivities and loyalties involved but we emphasise that this is not about taking from Clare so that Limerick can be better. This is not about Limerick staking claim to another county’s domain. It is about bringing us closer together, for all our good. It is the only way that the entire Mid-West and Limerick city can prosper as without this, we will continue to fail.

      We believe this report delivers what is best for the Region and Limerick. It also acknowledges the cost savings that are required but ones that can be made without any diminution of service. Ultimately, the implementation of this report will re-establish Limerick City as the 3rd largest city in the country and transform it into a vibrant dynamo for the entire region.

      If you don’t take my word for the necessity for collective strength, look no further than US President Barack Obama. In June 2008, at a speech before a US conference of Mayors, the then President elect Obama said:

      “We need to stop seeing our cities as the problem and start seeing them as the solution. Because strong cities are the building blocks of strong regions, and strong regions are essential for a strong America.”

      Below I will outline exactly why this is not just a case of one city’s battle to do better for itself but to do better for the region. I have stuck to the facts. I look forward to your comments and an open and honest debate about the issues.

      1) An expanded Limerick City Area

      What this will result in
      • A population which reflects the true metropolitan/urban area of Limerick city. This will be of benefit to all of Limerick and the greater mid-West Region. Strong cities make strong regions!
      • Reinstate our position as Ireland’s third city
      • Reinforce our position as a national gateway
      • Improve our attractiveness for investment and jobs because:
      o It will improve our competitiveness from a Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) perspective. One of the key research points for any multi-national looking at locating operations in Ireland, or elsewhere, is the population base/availability of workforce (graduate and otherwise). Typically, multi-nationals look to the largest cities and towns in a region. At present, Limerick only shows 59,000 population but with the realignment, it will show 100,000. This will significantly enhance our FDI potential
      o Currently Eurostat figures show Limerick as having the lowest Employment/Population (of working age) Ratio of any Irish City (Galway, Cork, Waterford and Dublin) and our proportion of population educated to tertiary level is below the national average.
      o We will have a larger urban population and therefore labour force
      o We will have a larger, better functioning urban core
      o It will allow a vision & master plan for the entire area of Limerick to be developed
      o Limerick, as the Mid-West’s capital, will no longer have the highest unemployment rate, lowest labour force participation rate or highest social housing ratio in Ireland

      What this will not result in
      • This will not result in split focus between Limerick City and Limerick County to the detriment of one. The development and economic growth, as well as the provision of local government services to the entire Limerick area, both urban and rural, will remain the sole focus of the new authority

      Misconception:
      • This is not about land grabbing by Limerick into Clare:
      o The areas in Co. Clare that are to be included in Limerick city are included only because they are part of the urban spread of Limerick city
      o Limerick city already provides local government services to these areas (eg. water & sewage)
      o Residents in these areas in Co. Clare already vote in the Limerick East Dáil electoral constituency
      o They also already vote in the South Constituency for MEP elections.
      o It will in no way infringe on their county allegiance or affiliation – e.g. they will play for Clare in the GAA parish system or for their county should they be selected
      o Residents in these areas are affected and impacted by decisions made by Limerick’s local governance. The realigning of the boundary will ensure that these people are given a representative voice on Limerick local issues
      o The recommendations are about creating a stronger Limerick city which will be to the benefit of the entire region

      2) A New Limerick Authority

      What this will result in
      • The abolition of the current complex governance system that exists in Limerick with three local authorities plus the regeneration agency all operating within a small geographic area
      • The report says that it is “extremely important to recognise an enlarged distinct city within the new Limerick authority” … as well as recognising “the importance of the historical aspects of civic life and preserve those elements of the heritage and traditions of the City”. The Chamber fully endorses these recommendations.
      • Cost savings
      o For example streamlining of management structure, resulting in one Limerick City & County manager, not one for the county and one for the city.
      o Eventual savings estimated at €20 million per annum
      • Harmonisation of commercial rates between Limerick city and county & ultimately a reduction in commercial rates
      • An overall vision, strategy & master plan for Limerick
      • Cooperation & coordination in planning
      • Will eradicate duplication of services & associated costs.
      • Will allow economies of scale.
      • Will improve accountability of elected representatives & council management.
      • Will cease competition between Limerick City Council & Limerick County Council.
      • It will stop disjointed planning and policies between city & county.

      What this will not result in
      • It will not increase commercial rates for businesses currently located in County Limerick or Clare.
      • It will not reduce the quantity or quality of front line services to the community and people of Limerick
      • It will not eradicate our city or its charter. There is no mention of this in any part of the recommendations. In fact the report aims at strengthening, not weakening, the city
      • It will not reduce the focus on city centre regeneration in any way. In contrast, with greater cooperation & coordination a greater focus can be placed on city which will be to the benefit of all Limerick people. There will also be an increase in resources available to focus on city centre regeneration

      3) Elected Membership

      What this will result in
      • A reduction in the number of elected representatives
      o Unlike TD’s there is no nationally defined ratio of population to elected local councillors.
      o We currently have 17 councillors in Limerick City for a population of 59,770 (ratio of 1:3,516)
      o Nationally county/city councillor representation ratio’s range from 1:1,318 in Leitrim to 1 councillor per 10,000 people in Fingal. Kildare county council administers an area of 187,000 people and has 25 elected representatives.
      o The new Limerick authority will administer an area with a combined population of 185,000
      o We currently have 28 councillors in County Limerick for a population of 124,265 (ratio of 1:4,438)
      • The number of councillors per local authority is set out in the Local Government Act 2001. New legislation will need to be enacted to change the current structures of Limerick City Council and Limerick County Council and introduce a new ratio of councillors per person in the area for the new Limerick City and County authority
      • Improved representation. Currently those living in the suburbs of the city have no representative voice on city council. This will no longer be the case.
      • Reduced costs for tax payers and commercial rate payers who ultimately pay the wages of councillors.

      What this will not result in
      • It will not reduce people’s public representation. The number of new elected representatives will be in accordance with the population of the new Limerick City & County authority. The number of publicly elected officials will be reduced. However every resident of Limerick will still have an elected representative for their electoral division which will be more reflective of the urban/ rural divide.

      4) Regeneration

      What this will result in
      • The Regeneration Agencies will ultimately operate under the auspices of the new Limerick City & County Authority
      o The Regeneration Agencies have been established as independent entities to address problems of social exclusion & improving the quality of life in priority areas in Limerick city. Their mandate to eliminate social exclusion can only be enhanced by being part of a Greater Limerick master plan under one authority, all working to the same end result – a vibrant inclusive and dynamic city and region. The report suggests that this be incorporated into the new Limerick City & County Authority. The blueprint for this is already established in the Ballymun Regeneration Agencies.

      What this will not result in
      • It will not reduce the focus or expertise on regeneration. Regeneration will remain a priority.

      5) Leadership

      What this will result in
      • One newly appointed Mayor for Limerick City and Country appointed for a 5 year term (resulting in the current posts of the Mayor for Limerick City and the Cathaoirleach for Limerick County being removed)
      o This mayor will be a figurehead/ leader to champion and represent Limerick and the greater Mid-West region with commercial & development organisations nationally & internationally but with a mandate to ensure continuity of implementing policies over the full 5 year term.
      • Greater continuity in policies and role of Mayor.
      o The template for this in Ireland is about to be introduced in the Greater Dublin Metropolitan Area & such a system effectively operates across the globe – Johnson in London, Bloomberg in New York, Schwarzenegger for California.

      What this will not result in
      • Although there will no longer be two council officials elected into the separate roles of Mayor for the city and Cathaoirleach for the county, the newly appointed Mayor for Limerick will have far greater responsibility to be a figurehead and public representative for the people of Limerick as the current holders of the two positions. Indeed, if anything the increased term of office will ensure that the Mayor can collectively market the region better and raise the bar, therefore, for more ambitious targets for Limerick during the term of office than under the current system

      In summary, we believe that the government is only considering two options, i.e. to either (a) maintain the status quo involving no change in the size or responsibility of either local authority or (b) to adopt the recommendations of Local Government Committee under Denis Brosnan. Maintaining the status quo is not a realistic option for our city and region. Everyone I have asked agrees wholeheartedly on this. And yes, the timing of implementing a decision is also vital. It needs to be implemented immediately and not to be tied up with bureaucratic delays. Whereas implementing the recommendations of the Local Government Committee under Denis Brosnan may only give everyone 90% of what they would like to see, it will be such a dramatic improvement on the status quo, that we owe it to our future generations to accept the leadership being offered to us and to embrace it collectively for the best interests of our region and our city. Let the debate commence….. http://www.limerickchamber.ie/

      .

    • #808302
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      More on this in today’s Irish Times. The point made in the statement above about a reconfigured County Limerick being too small to operate on its own is entirely valid.

      With the dire financial situation, now should be an opportune time to finally address our appallingly wasteful system of local governance. There are potentially massive savings to be made from either amalgamating County Councils or indeed abolishing them altogether in favour of regional authorities.

      Sadly this country is probably still too wedded to the parish pump for this to happen yet. That said the proposed realignment in Limerick might set an important precedent for reform.

      Being entirely selfish I actually hope this Government remains in office long enough for the Brosnan Report to be implemented. It’s that important. The present shower have nothing to lose anyhow as they know they’ll be out on their arse soon.

      I fear a new coalition would be likely to order a “review” & then let the report gather dust rather than risk upsetting local interests.

      Limerick’s economy may suffer ‘for decades’

      KATHRYN HAYES

      LIMERICK CITY will suffer economic stagnation for decades unless a controversial report proposing radical changes to local governance is adopted, Limerick Chamber of Commerce has claimed.

      Announcing a campaign on the issue yesterday, the chamber’s president Kieran MacSweeney described the report by the Limerick Local Government Committee as a “unique opportunity” for Limerick and the midwest.

      The committee, chaired by former Kerry Group head Denis Brosnan, was established in February to advise the Government on the most appropriate local government arrangements for Limerick.

      Its report, which has met opposition from a number of quarters, recommends the establishment of a unified Limerick local authority servicing a population of 187,000.

      At present two local authorities govern Limerick city and county, while Clare County Council governs areas on the north of the Shannon on the outskirts of the city. A joint authority is the preferred option of Limerick County Council. Limerick City Council has rejected this idea and favours an extension to the city boundary, which would include parts of Co Limerick and large suburbs in Clare.

      Clare County Council is reluctant to allow Limerick govern any part of southeast Clare. Announcing details of Limerick Chamber’s campaign yesterday, Mr MacSweeney said if stakeholders put the best interests of the city and region before their own personal and political preferences, consensus would be achieved for the greater good of Limerick city and the midwest.

      He said the argument for Mr Brosnan’s report was “irrefutable” considering recent indications from the Government that the report would be adopted entirely or the status quo would remain.

      Limerick Chamber is seeking the support of the local business community for its campaign through a petition on its website, limerickchamber.ie.

      “The strong view of business across Limerick, and one that is very much being volunteered through our online petition just launched last week, is that not alone should the recommendations of the Brosnan report be implemented for the greater good of the city but for the entire region.

      “These recommendations will deliver a city of scale of 100,000 population and multimillion euro savings to be reinvested back in the region,” Mr MacSweeney said.

      The chamber did not see the Brosnan report “as the panacea to all the city’s economic ills” but its implementation was an absolute imperative for the city and region.

      Limerick Chamber chief executive Maria Kelly said political self-preservation could not get in the way of the greater good.

    • #808303
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      An ironic aspect to all this boundary-extension nonsense is that the good people of Clare are keeping the city centre of Limerick alive.
      Were it not for the people of Shannon banks, Westbury, Parteen, Clonlara, O’Brien’s Bride, Broadford, Cratloe, SMB, Meelick, Shannon the centre of Limerick would look even more desolate.
      Limerick city and county councils happily dough-nutted their entrances to the city with awful suburban shopping centres, which now filter out a large percentage of the city’s potential custom.
      The Clare routes luckily have no such ‘malls’, as yet and so we continue provide custom for the city.
      It is indeed ironic that we should be the people helping to keep Limerick city alive, and yet the same city council wants to subsume us into their control.
      I mean, why wouldn’t we want to come under the jurisdiction of Limerick city council – they’ve done such a marvellous job

    • #808304
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      On the matter of the Brosnan report. Is it not a bit redundant? The McCarthy report compiled to identify savings recommended having just 10 local authorities in the country.
      Why not have a strong Mid-West authority, sitting in Limerick incorporating N Tipp, Clare, Limerick city and Limerick county?
      The councillors won’t want this of course, but it would make sense
      The arguments about county loyalty, sporting allegiance, etc. wouldn’t be an issue, as each area/parish would still be a part of its county, but each county, in its entirety would become part of a greater authority.

    • #808305
      Anonymous
      Inactive

      @vitruvius wrote:

      An ironic aspect to all this boundary-extension nonsense is that the good people of Clare are keeping the city centre of Limerick alive.
      Were it not for the people of Shannon banks, Westbury, Parteen, Clonlara, O’Brien’s Bride, Broadford, Cratloe, SMB, Meelick, Shannon the centre of Limerick would look even more desolate.
      Limerick city and county councils happily dough-nutted their entrances to the city with awful suburban shopping centres, which now filter out a large percentage of the city’s potential custom.
      The Clare routes luckily have no such ‘malls’, as yet and so we continue provide custom for the city.
      It is indeed ironic that we should be the people helping to keep Limerick city alive, and yet the same city council wants to subsume us into their control.
      I mean, why wouldn’t we want to come under the jurisdiction of Limerick city council – they’ve done such a marvellous job

      I dont agree that it’s nonsense for a city to look for a boundary change when it’s suburbs outgrow the existing boundary. I can’t think of any ‘awful suburban shopping centres’ happily allowed by the city council bar the Parway which hardly filters out much custom as it’s only a glorified Dunnes stores..

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