Speaking in advance of Monday night's (Jun 14) Cork City Council vote in relation to the redevelopment of Páirc Uí Chaoimh, Workers’ Party Councillor Ted Tynan has said that a solution must be found that will satisfy the needs of the GAA to expand and the competing need for a major public park for the citizens of Cork.
A motion on behalf of the GAA is due to come before tomorrow's council meeting, proposing that 6.8 acres of land designated for a regional amenity park be sold to the GAA for a major redevelopment and upgrading of facilities at Páirc Uí Chaoimh. Cork's City Manager is opposing the plan, offering 2.3 acres instead.
Cllr. Tynan said he believed that a totally new stadium within the South Docklands area was the best solution and that he would be opposing the proposal before the council tomorrow (Monday) but strongly urging the City Manager to do a swap with the GAA for another site within docklands.
The Workers’ Party councillor said, “The GAA’s proposal envisages the demolition in stages of most of the existing Páirc Uí Chaoimh. This will involve considerable disruption to the stadium’s fixtures with inevitable restrictions on crowd capacity and safety issues for several years. I am proposing that an entirely new stadium, incorporating the proposed Centre of Excellence, be built within a few hundred yards of Páirc Uí Chaoimh. This will preserve the proposed amenity park and give the GAA even more space to expand.”, said Cllr. Tynan.
“The City Council will have to accept that the docklands plan is not a Holy Grail. The economy is a very different animal now to what it was when the lofty plans for docklands were drawn up. It is inevitable in my view that the docklands development will have to be scaled down. This gives the council scope to make plenty of space available to the GAA within a puc fada of its historical home. It can be achieved if people are willing to open their minds and move from their entrenched positions”.
Cllr. Tynan said that the Workers’ Party was fully supportive of the GAA’s plans but that the opportunity to give the people of Cork a magnificent new public park close to the city centre might not arise again for generations. Both of these plans could be achieved if people were prepared to think outside the box and consider his proposal.
Issued Sunday, 13th June 2010