Dáil debates

Tuesday, 12 February 2019

Ceisteanna - Questions

Urban Renewal Schemes

4:00 pm

Photo of Dessie EllisDessie Ellis (Dublin North West, Sinn Fein) | Oireachtas source

Notwithstanding the very good work being undertaken as part of the north east inner city initiative, there are big problems in the north east inner city as we all know, similar to the issues in my area that need to be addressed. There has been a big increase in illegal dumping in the area since the disastrous privatisation of bin collections. Antisocial behaviour is on the rise and gangs are openly selling drugs on street corners.

There is also a major problem, not just in the inner city but in many other areas, of quad bikes and scramblers being illegally driven around housing estates and green areas. I was disappointed that a Bill I introduced to regulate these vehicles was voted down by the Government and by Fianna Fáil. Residents are living in fear and there does not appear to be strong Garda visibility. We have raised this lack of visibility with the Garda and the Minister for Justice and Equality, which is a consequence of there being 54 fewer gardaí in the north-central area compared with the position a decade ago. This must be corrected.

Given the lack of affordable and social housing in the city, there is a growing trend of two and three generations of a family sharing a single overcrowded home. This is having a very negative impact on people's physical and mental health and on children's education and social development. It is a big contributory factor to many of the problems of the north inner city. We must get to grips with the massive housing shortage across the area and right across Dublin.

There are lots of abandoned historic buildings in the inner city, which are major eyesores for residents and visitors alike. They include Aldborough House and the former Magdalen laundry site on Sean MacDermott Street. There is a lack of imagination and political will to develop these buildings for the local community as opposed to simply serving the interests of private developers.


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