Dublin City Council Questions to the City ManagerPosted January 19th, 2012
QUESTIONS TO DUBLIN CITY MANAGER
SOUTH EAST AREA COMMITTEE MEETING, 12th DECEMBER 2011
Q1. Councillor Edie Wynne
To thank the Manager for the ‘clean-ups’ in Maxwell Lane and to ask if it is possible to find a more permanent solution to the problem as this is a constantly recurring situation.
Under the Litter Management Plan, 2008-2011, residential areas such as Maxwell Lane are scheduled to be cleaned once every twelve weeks. However if the resident wish to become involved in a clean up at any time the SEA office will provide them with the necessary equipment and arrange to remove the resulting bagged waste.
Q2. Councillor Gerry Ashe
To ask the Manager when the cost benefit analysis and full capital appraisal of precinct improvement works for Canon Mooney Gardens, Ringsend, Dublin 4 will be submitted to the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government.
Subject to the availability of funding Dublin City Council propose to carry out a number of flat scheme improvement works over the next few years. In general such works consist of external environmental and security improvement works but they also seek to increase the energy efficiency of the scheme.
Unfortunately due to the current financial climate it is not possible to give an indicative commencement date of work at this complex.
Q3. Councillor Gerry Ashe
To ask the Manager to arrange to have the stairwells at (details supplied) cleaned as thoroughly as possible with a particular emphasis being paid to the landings as there is an on-going problem with the cleanliness of the stairwells.
Our Caretaking Service Team Leader for this area reports that the landings and stairwells in this complex are swept on a daily basis and weather permitting are power-washed on a weekly basis.
Q4. Councillor Edie Wynne
To ask the Manager to have the blocked shore at the end of the laneway adjacent to number 1 and 2 Templemore Avenue cleared as they are a cause of serious flooding.
The issues of flooding at this location has been brought to the attention of the South City Maintenance Engineer for investigation. A report will be forwarded to the Councillor when available.
Q5. Councillor Edie Wynne
To ask the Manager to have the litter bins that were removed from Grosvenor Road, Rathmines (1 bin) and Rathgar Road (2 bins) restored.
Waste Management Services are not in favour of having litter bins in residential areas or side turns off main roads as experience has shown us that litter bins at these locations are regularly used to dispose of domestic refuse and can in fact become focal points for dumping. For this reason we have been removing litter bins from residential areas throughout the city including the Rathmines area. We are still maintaining the litter bins on the main roads, bus stops, near schools and major shopping areas.
Q6. Councillor Edie Wynne
To ask the Manager that he request that An Post install a post box at a central point in Rathgar village, perhaps close to the pharmacist and AIB where there is short term parking available as this would at least facilitate An Post’s customers to post letters locally.
This query will be forwarded to An Post and the Councillor will be contacted when a reply is available.
Q7. Councillor Kieran Binchy
To ask the Manager for a full report on the status or progress of any plans, if any, for flood defence works in Sandymount.
The S2S Project included provision for flood defense works in Sandymount. Due to the cost of the S2S, these are unlikely to proceed in the short to medium term. As a result, Dublin City Council will re-examine options to protect the seafront in Sandymount and will report on it in 2012.
Q8. Councillor Dermot Lacey
To ask the Manager if he could respond to the issues relating to the Ranelagh Luas Bridge outlined in this attachment submitted with this question.
We have investigated the gullies at this location and they are in need of repair. This work will be placed on our works programme and carried out in the coming weeks.
Q9. Councillor Mary Freehill
Would the Manager please state when will the extended footpaths at the junction of Leinster Rd and Charleville Rd be removed. This was the subject of a motion agreed at least nine months ago, when I pointed out that to make a right turn from Charleville, it is necessary to veer over to the other side of the road to make the turn and has resulted in many local cars have been scraped and damaged.
The Traffic Engineer will meet with the Roads Maintenance Engineer next week with a view to arranging for removal of the section of extending footpath. The Councillor will be advised immediately after this meeting as to the timescale for removal of same.
Q10. Councillor Mannix Flynn
Can the Manager promote an initiative to combat anti-social behaviour by establishing neighbourhood walks within the communities. This initiative has proved very effective in other jurisdictions in combatting unacceptable social behaviour. The initiative involves groups of neighbours taking their walks together around their respective neighbourhoods.
‘Let’s Walk & Talk’ is a community initiative of Dublin City Council started in June 2007 comprising of not only historical walking tours and cultural events but also a weekly walks programme in the community. There are currently 8 weekly neighbourhood walks in the city, 4 of which take place in the South East Area. These walks are led by a team of community volunteers. These walks are very popular and have huge benefits for participants and their community. We are always looking at opportunities to have walks in other areas however each walk is dependent on having a dedicated team of volunteers who are committed to turning up every week and leading the walks. Last month, the Community Development Team of the South East Area Office organised Walk Leader Training for interested volunteers and there was a great response however there are currently only enough volunteers to cover the existing programme of weekly walks. We have always advertised for volunteers through the ‘Let’s Walk & Talk’ newsletter (7,000 copies of each issue distributed) as well as through Volunteer Centres and will continue to do so in the future.
Q11. Councillor Mannix Flynn
Can the Manager look to establish Dublin city artists forum.
The Arts office will consult with artists to consider the feasibility and function of the proposed forum and report back to the Councillor.
Q12. Councillor Mannix Flynn
Can the Manager examine the street lighting arrangement in the Temple Bar area with the view to upgrading and establishing more onstreet lighting.
We will investigate the existing lighting here and consider any necessary improvements for inclusion in our 2012 programme of improvements works, subject to finances made available.
Q13. Councillor Mannix Flynn
Can the Manager investigate the use of a skip in Synge Lane off Synge Street at the back of the Copper House Gallery known as Fire Printers.
The South East Area Litter Warden visited the location above and there was no skip visible on Synge Lane.
Q14. Councillor Mannix Flynn
Can the Manager establish a cleaning regime for the Camden Street/Wexford St/ Aungier Street areas.
Waste Management Services have Camden Street, Wexford Street and Aungier Street cleaned on a daily basis and every effort will continue to be made to keep this area as clean as possible.
Q15. Councillor Mannix Flynn
Can the Manager prune the trees in the Long lane area.
Trees at this location have been inspected and it is proposed to add the tree pruning to our works programme for the area and anticipate that the trees will be pruned during the dormant season.
Q16. Councillor Mannix Flynn
Can the Manager give a complete update on the proposals for a new years festival at Dame St/College Green area and as to whether there will be alcohol on sale at this event.
In mid 2011 Fáilte Ireland approached Dublin City Council with an outline concept to promote Dublin to overseas markets and Dubliners alike around New Year. Research had shown that tourists were researching Dublin as a New Year destination but the city lacked a New Years focus and could do more on the festival front to encourage tourists to travel to Dublin over and above other European cities.
The festival itself will include musical and cultural events culminating in a concert in College Green on December 31st 2011. The New Year’s Festival is still subject to licence from Dublin City Council but we are mindful of drawing tourists to the city to support the hospitality industry and to offer a quality entertainment package to the citizens at this time of year.
The College Green event as proposed would be a ticketed event with an expected attendance of between 5,000 – 8,000. The event promoters have sought to sell alcohol in a controlled manner at the event and are currently applying to the District Courts for an occasional licence.
The Gardaí and City Council are not objecting to this application after assurances from the event promoter on the strictly controlled nature and responsible drinking element of the overall concert.
Q17. Councillor Mannix Flynn
Can the Manager ensure that there is equality with regards community grants to all community groups in the South East Area.
Application forms will be sent out to all Community groups in the South East Area in the next week. Community staff will contact these groups in the New Year to ensure compliance with the closing date of 30th January 2012.
Q18. Councillor Mannix Flynn
Can the Manager give this committee an update as to what future of Charlemont Street redevelopment project and given that this project will be delayed for a further number of years what community initiatives if any are being rolled out to support the community at Charlemont in their present situation.
It is anticipated that Alcove Properties will seek an amendment to the existing planning permission in the New Year to address An Bord Pleanala compliance issues and also to try to have the reduced commercial element re-examined. Dublin City Council have rolled out and supported an extensive range of community initiatives in Charlement Street including a Home Work Club involving educational trips every two weeks. In addition various age groups and clubs use the computer room and SAYS youth service runs activities for the teenagers. The City Council will continue to identify and support worthwhile community initiatives.
Q19. Councillor Mannix Flynn
Can the Manager issue a report as to whether film companies using City Hall or any other premises belonging to Dublin City Council are being charged any fees and if so what are those fees.
Requests from film companies to use City Hall are considered on a case by case basis. One such request was received in 2011. In this case a fee of €4,000 per day was agreed with the film company. The filming was completed in two days.
Standard fees are charged for commercial filming in Dublin City Council Parks and public outdoor spaces. The rates are as follows
1st Hour – €200 plus VAT
Subsequent Hours – €100 plus VAT up to a maximum of €1,000 plus VAT per day.
Wood Quay Venue:
Normal hire rates apply regardless of the activity.
€ 500.00 plus vat for full day, € 350.00 plus vat for ½ day.
Atrium, Civic Offices:
Requests from film companies to use Civic Offices are considered on a case by case basis.
There is no charge during normal working hours but a fee will apply if the filming takes place before or after the office hours of 9.00 – 17.00 (Monday – Friday). This is to cover the cost of arranging access to the building and having a porter remain on site with crew for the duration of filming.
Q20. Councillor Mannix Flynn
Can the Manager liase with the school children and teachers at Westland Row school with regarding a process of street clean in their immediate environment.
The Environmental Liaison Officer is at present in contact with Westland Row School in relation to the above matter.
Q21. Councillor Jim O’Callaghan
To ask the Manager when the yellow box will be restored at its junction opposite Eglinton Terrace. It was removed because of roadworks on Donnybrook Road.
The repainting of the yellow box on Eglinton Terrace will be referred to the Traffic Officer for his attention as soon as possible.
Q22. Councillor Jim O’Callaghan
To ask the Manager whether a yellow box can be provided on Donnybrook Road at its junction with Rampart Lane as the roads serve a minimum of 50 houses/apartments and is necessary particularly in the mornings for residents trying to get to work and schools.
The issue of the yellow box at Rampart Lane will be referred to the Traffic Advisory Group and the Councillor will be advised as to the recommendation of the Group in due course.
Q23. Councillor Jim O’Callaghan
To ask the Manager whether residents of Serpentine Avenue, Dublin 4 who do not have off-street parking, can be issued with some form of parking pass when the RDS are hosting events with attendees in their thousands, so that residents’ cars are not clamped due to car parking spaces not being available on these occasions.
Pay & display and residents’ permit parking in the city is regulated by the Dublin City Council Parking Control Bye-Laws 2011.
There is no provision in the Bye-Laws for ”parking passes” or other such permits allowing persons with residents parking permits to park their vehicles other than in the streets specified on their permits or permitting parking in a number of other streets at particular defined times. There would be problems with the enforcement of such a scheme and it would inevitably lead to disputes with residents of these other streets where Serpentine Avenue residents would seek to park.
Additional valid streets can not be made available to residents of Serpentine Avenue as there is no available parking capacity on any adjacent street.
Q24. Councillor Jim O’Callaghan
To ask the Manager whether steps can be taken to ensure that the unauthorised use of the premises (the details of which are attached below) is subject to appropriate planning enforcement measures by the City Council.
Following a decision by An Bord Pleanála that the carrying out of business activities at the property mentioned outside normal working hours constituted an intensification of activity that amounted to a material change of use, the owners were advised by the Planning Enforcement Section that the current use is unauthorised and asked to outline their proposals to address the issue.
No response has been received. An inspection of the property carried out on 9 November 2011 showed no evidence of commercial activity taking place. However, arrangements are being made to inspect the property during evening hours. Should unauthorised activity be observed, a decision will be made on appropriate enforcement action.
It is not correct to state that the Council cannot undertake out of hours inspections. However, given general economic circumstances and the requirement to cut public expenditure, care is taken to ensure that all out of hours working is as effective as possible. It is not possible to carry out general late night or week end monitoring on a continuous basis in hope to observe unauthorised activity at some point.
The information supplied to date by the complainant will be used to establish a suitable time to carry out an inspection, following which a decision will be made on enforcement action. The video evidence mentioned, while informative, cannot be used in enforcement proceedings as it constitutes ‘hearsay’ evidence.
Q25. Councillor Jim O’Callaghan
To ask the Manager whether it would consider dipping the paths at the entrance gates to the five houses at Garville Terrace, Rathgar, Dublin 6 to facilitate the residents in gaining access to their homes without having to drive over the footpath.
Under the Planning and Development Regulations, 2001, the installation of a vehicular dishing requires planning permission. The residents of Garville Terrace can apply to have the footpath dished at the entrances to their houses at their expense once they have obtained planning permission to do so.
Q26. Councillor Jim O’Callaghan
To ask the Manager what steps can be taken in order to ameliorate the effects of heavy rain and flooding on the Chelmsford Road area, Ranelagh, Dublin 6.
The Roads Maintenance Department has inspected this road for the adequacy of road gullies and found that the correct amount of gullies are in place and in good working order. The Drainage Division is investigating flooding issues in the larger area of Ranelagh and will report back in January on this area and clarify matters on the local roads such as Chelmsford Road.
Q27. Councillor Jim O’Callaghan
To ask the Manager whether the amber traffic light on the lights leading from Mount Pleasant Avenue Upper onto Belgrave Square can be repaired.
We have examined the Mount Pleasant Avenue Upper / Belgrave Square junction and found a faulty connection for the amber light in question. The amber light has now been repaired and is operating correctly.
Q28. Councillor Jim O’Callaghan
To ask the Manager whether the person whose details are attached can have her flat refurbished immediately since it was badly damaged in the recent flooding.
This property has been inspected by staff from the local Area Maintenance Office and the necessary repairs will be carried out within the next 6-8 weeks.
Q29. Councillor Jim O’Callaghan
To ask the Manger whether any steps can be taken by the City Council to resolve the ongoing problem at the address detailed below where there is an ongoing squat which is detrimental to businesses and residents in the area.
The Derelict Sites Section will arrange a prompt inspection of this property to establish if any action is warranted under the Derelict Sites Act and a report will issue to the Councillor. However illegal occupation of a premises is a matter for the owner of the property and the Gardai.
Q30. Councillor Jim O’Callaghan
To ask the Manager whether any coordinated steps are being taken by the Council in respect of the listed buildings as attached which appear to be owned by the same party and which are being kept in an ongoing state of disrepair. In particular, can the Council ascertain from the owner what steps he will take in order to ensure that the listed properties are properly preserved.
Section 58 of the Planning and Development Act 2000 obliges each owner and occupier of the protected structure or proposed protected structure to ensure that the structure is not endangered. In respect of an unoccupied protected structure this requirement includes an obligation to protect the structure against intrusion or vandalism.
With respect to the boarded up property at Palmerston Park, the Council has not received any complaints that unauthorised development works may be taking place at this property. The property owner has been asked to facilitate an inspection to ensure that the building is not endangered and his reply is awaited.
It is understood that the property at Highfield Road has been sold recently. This property was redeveloped over recent years on foot of planning permission granted in 2006. It was inspected on 12 April 2011. The inspection revealed that the building was not endangered and the original features that are subject to conservation were in a satisfactory condition. The condition of the garden following the completion of the works is not a planning issue.
I am unaware of any other property on Highfield Road or on Palmerston Road that are owned by the person mentioned. Enforcement action was initiated against the owner of one other property on Highfield Road. This matter was addressed in 2010 and the building was secured against weathering, vandalism and general endangerment.
I am unable to report on the other mentioned properties without precise addresses.
In respect of all properties that are included in the Council’s Record of Protected Structures, the Council’s Conservation Unit is informed of complaints of unauthorised development works or uses. Where the complaint is of endangerment, the Council’s Conservation Section in conjunction with the Enforcement Section ensure that all necessary works are carried out to best conservation practice.
Q31. Councillor Kieran Binchy
To ask the Manager to deal with both issues raised in the following message (details supplied).
Waste Management Services had the pigeon dropping power hosed from the Railway Arch on South Cumberland Street on the 6th December 2011. The South East Area Public Domain Crew will insure that this area is power-hosed on a regular basis. We will monitor this location and keep it as clean as possible.
The broken light was repaired on the 29th of November by Public Lighting.
The issue relating to signage has been referred to the Traffic advisory Group for consideration and the Councillor will be advised as to the recommendation of the group as soon as is possible.
A letter has been sent to Irish Rail regarding the pigeon’s.
Q32. Councillor Kieran Binchy
To ask the Manager if trees on Veronica Terrace, Stella Gardens, Irishtown could be pruned sufficiently so as to prevent them from blocking light to residents homes on Veronica Terrace.
This work has been added to our tree pruning programme for the area and will be undertaken during the dormant season.
Q33. Councillor Kieran Binchy
To ask the Manager if consideration could be given to the suggestion of installing speed ramps on Curzon Street, Dublin 8 to combat excessive speeding by cars rat running from Heytesbury Street to the South Circular road.
This matter will be referred to the Traffic Advisory Group for consideration and the Councilor will be informed of the recommendation of the group as soon as is possible.
Q34. Councillor Kieran Binchy
To ask the Manager to investigate the upkeep of Grant’s Row, Lower Mount Street. Upgrade of lighting, regular removable of litter, remove graffiti from walls also new street sign required as current sign is faded and illegible.
Public Lighting have investigated the existing lighting levels here, and will consider any necessary improvements for inclusion in the 2012 programme of improvement works, subject to finances made available.
Waste Management Services will continue to remove litter from Grant’s Row on a regular basis.
Arrangements will be made to deal with the graffiti on the walls as requested.
New street sign for Grants Row has been ordered and will be erected upon delivery. This should happen in the first quarter of 2012.
Q35. Councillor Kieran Binchy
To ask the Manager to consider installing double yellow lines or similar safety measures at a location (details supplied) so that those driving in and out of the terrace can see around the corner.
This matter will be referred to the Traffic Advisory Group for consideration and the Councillor will be advised of the recommendation of the Group as soon as is possible.
Q36. Councillor Kieran Binchy
To ask the Manager to resurface the footpath surface on the stretch of Clanbrassil St between Lombard St and Vincent St, on the Lombard St/Vincent St side of Clanbrassil St.
Road Maintenance is planning on carrying out extensive footpath repairs in 2012, however, these will be confined to town centres with heavy pedestrian foot-fall. The footpath at this location is not in a dangerous condition. Nor has it an especially large footfall and as such, is not a priority for reconstruction. This Department will carry out repairs to any dangerous areas of footpath at this location as soon as possible.
Q37. Councillor Mary Freehill
Would the Manager to explain why litter bins have been removed from Charleville Rd Rathmines and please have them returned.
Waste Management Services are not in favour of having litter bins in residential areas or side turns off main roads as experience has shown us that litter bins at these locations are regularly used to dispose of domestic refuse and can in fact become focal points for dumping. For this reason we have been removing litter bins from residential areas throughout the city including the Charleville Road area. We are still maintaining the litter bins on the main roads, bus stops, near schools and major shopping areas.
Q38. Councillor Maria Parodi
To ask the Manager to investigate the cause of water egress and dampness at (details supplied) and to arrange to have any remedial and repair work carried out.
This matter is currently being investigated and appropriate remedial repair works will be carried out before the end of 2011.
Q39. Councillor Maria Parodi
To ask the Manager to take all the necessary steps to repair the state of the road surface in (details supplied).
Road Maintenance will carry out repairs to the carriageway at (details supplied) as soon as possible. Given the imminence of Operation Free-flow, these works will be carried out in early 2012.
Q40. Councillor Maria Parodi
To ask the Manager if the process to extinguish the right of way of the lane behind (details supplied) was ever initiated. If so, can the Manager provide a report on what stage Dublin City Council are at in the process.
An application was received from the resident in (details supplied 1) requesting the extinguishment of the public right of way to the laneway at the rear of (details supplied 2) and (details supplied 3). The laneway is owned by Dublin City Council and is in charge by our Housing Department.
We subsequently wrote to the applicant to establish the manner in which it was proposed to block off access (e.g. type of gate) and also stating that the City Council could not undertake liability for the cost of erecting gates. The applicant never replied to this request for further information.
Q41. Councillor Maria Parodi
To ask the Manager to implement traffic calming measures to reduce speeding on (details supplied).
This matter will be referred to the Traffic Advisory Group for consideration and the Councillor will be advised as to the recommendation of the group as soon as is possible.
Q42. Councillor Maria Parodi
To ask the Manager to address the following urgent issues raised by Westland Row CBS in (details supplied).
(a) This will be referred to the Traffic advisory Group for consideration and the Councillor will be advised as to the recommendation of the group as soon as is possible.
(b) Waste Management Services had the pigeon dropping power hosed from the Railway Arch on South Cumberland Street on the 6th December 2011. The South East Area Public Domain Crew will insure that this area is power-hosed on a regular basis. We will monitor this location and keep it as clean as possible.
(c) & (d) The area office has written to Irish Rail on these matters.
Q43. Councillor Maria Parodi
To ask the Manager to investigate implementing traffic calming measures on (details supplied).
This matter will be referred to the Traffic Advisory Group for consideration and the Councilor will be advise as to the recommendations of the Group as soon as is possible.
Q44. Councillor Maria Parodi
To ask the Manager for a report on the following in (details supplied).
The Planning Department have received no applications for any development at (details supplied). As this development is within the Administrative area of the Dublin Docklands Development Authority, the Councillor is advised to contact the Dublin Docklands Development Authority to ascertain if any applications for Section 25 certification.
Q45. Councillor Maria Parodi
To ask the Manager to allocate the necessary funding for the upgrading of (details supplied).
There is no provision in the current estimates to upgrade the playground at (details supplied) and any upgrading will only be considered in the context of the 2012 budget estimates for Playground improvements.
Q46. Councillor Maria Parodi
To ask the Manager to address the following in (details supplied).
(Details supplied) is part of only 7 zones in the city whereby we clean the gullies there up to three times a year and on the 7th of September all of the 10 gullies were cleaned here. They are due to be cleaned again within the next 2 months.
Q47. Councillor Maria Parodi
To ask the Manager to provide an update on (details supplied).
The Planning Department requested additional information from the Councillor on 08/12/11.
Q48. Councillor Maria Parodi
To ask the Manager for (details supplied) to be cleaned as residents have expressed to me that it hasn’t been cleaned in 3 months.
Waste Management Services had (details supplied) cleaned on the 5th December 2011.