Pilot Programme ReImagine Dublin One

Some causes for optimism…

  • The area is multicultural and ethnically diverse.
  • There is a strong residential population unlike the south retail quarter.
  • Lower rents in old properties have attracted an interesting mix of small, independent business such as design studios and ethnic restaurants. Many are quirky and experimental.
  • There is a rich tradition of street trading by families who have worked in the area for generations.
  • The North Quays are south facing so can be developed further as a linear amenity space connected to the River.
  • The significant development opportunities, from the underused local laneways to larger sites. Important developments close by such as Parnell Square Cultural Quarter / City Library will act as magnets to and through this area.
  • The area is home to buildings and destinations of national, social and cultural significance.
  • O’Connell Street as Dublin and Ireland’s Main Street always plays a key part in national celebrations such as the Patrick’s Day Parade.
  • The area has excellent public transport links.
  • The area has the potential to develop further as a tourist destination.
  • Many people have a profound sense of nostalgia for the area and see it as ‘Real Dublin’.

What else? Share your thoughts at the Workshop!

Some causes for concern…

  • The lack of permeability in the area because of large department and malls that close at night. Junctions connecting primary streets to surrounding streets and the network of lanes are seen as dark, uninviting and threatening; particularly at night time.
  • The large footprint of many stores has a deadening effect on the vitality of side streets (day and night) and a deadening effect on main streets when they are shuttered at night.  There are no apartments over these stores on the main streets.
  • There is a particularly high concentration of multi-storey car parks which contribute to high traffic, particularly along the area’s boundaries at Parnell St., O’Connell St. and the Quays.
  • The significant level of site vacancy, vacancy within buildings, building dereliction and poor maintenance.
  • Improvements in the public realm have been focused on primary shopping streets with side streets neglected. This is reflected in the uneven distribution of footfall throughout the area.
  • Lack of green and amenity space, tree-planting and seating. There are few spaces where people can come together and linger without spending money, though proposals are underway to redesign Wolfe Tone Park. There are no public facilities e.g. toilets.
  • The area still suffers from a poor reputation due in part to drug related anti-social behaviour for which it had, in the past, become synonymous.
  • Poor amenity and space standards in many of the apartment developments make them unsuitable for family or long term living. Given the upward pressure on rents, it is likely that people are living in increasingly cramped conditions.
  • Commercially/culturally the district is very retail dominated, making it vulnerable to rapid decline in face of increased out of town shopping and growing trends for online shopping.
  • The area is not responding to changing trends in shopping whereby people want greater diversity and shop and socialise in the same trip.
  • Restaurants and cafés on the main streets are not meeting people’s expectations.
  • Business desire to develop an evening economy has potential to conflict with residential use, particularly given the growing demand for more homes in the area.
  • O’Connell Street, despite improvement works, has yet to regain its previous status as the premier destination and focal point for Irelands social and retail sector.
  • The area has been subject to many insensitive developments constructed in the late 20th century.
  • Once popular and successful streets, such as Talbot St. have lost their destination shops and their identity.
  • The relocation of the Dublin Institute of Technology’s colleges at Bolton St. and Cathal Brugha St. to the Grangegorman Campus may impact adversely on the area’s economy and social vitality.
  • There is a high concentration of acute social services in the area.
  • Litter and dumped refuse outside premises, more so on streets that lead into the area but are outside the BID area.

What else? Share your thoughts at the Workshop!