Uphill battle remains in bid to have trouble spot closed
COUNTY COUNCIL SAYS PROBLEMS WITH EXTINGUISHING RIGHT-OF-WAY
WICKLOW COUNTY COUNCIL has no money to secure a laneway in Greystones if an extinguishment of a right-ofway is given the green light.
After a fire early in the New Year in a laneway at Beechbrook/Upper Grattan Park, members looked to have the laneway closed.
However, at a recent meeting of the Town Council, Town Clerk Myra Porter said she had received a letter from Noeleen Roche of the Planning Department in Wicklow County Council, who said she was ‘unable to establish any reports of anti-social behaviour in the area of this laneway either to Wicklow County Council or Greystones Town Council prior to this report relating to the fire'.
She went onto to say that the community gardai had spoken to residents of Riverdell and Upper Grattan Park a number of times in the past year and ‘ they had voiced concerns about youths loitering in the laneway.
‘ The gardai stated that the area is being used by loitering youths who are consuming alcohol, committing criminal damage, destroying the walls with graffiti and littering.'
Ms. Roche said there is a 10KV ESB transformer in the laneway as well as a 100mm water main which will require access by both the council and the ESB. She said she didn't see how the right-of-way could be extinguished on that basis.
She suggested that the council monitor levels of antisocial behaviour in the laneway and that the council consider an approach from a family about constructing a more secure fence along their property.
However she said if the council wanted to proceed with the extinguishment of the right-of-way, it had to be advertised in both papers to facilitate public consultation on the matter.
‘However proposals to extinguish an existing right-of-way can be divisive within local communities and issues and objections often arise after the extinguishment has been confirmed which have prevented the closure of other laneways in recent times.
‘If there are no objections to the proposed extinguishment there would be a cost involved in building a wall high enough to deter people climbing over/dumping at both entrances to the laneways.'
She said if the ESB didn't object access would have to be provided through the use of gates. ‘ The installation of gates and walls will not serve to deter anti-social behaviour and dumping as the areas would be enclosed and hidden from public view.
‘Michael Nicholson, Director of Services, has advised that the council does not have the funds to construct walls and gates. The only other option would be to offer the laneway for sale to property owners in the immediate vicinity of the laneway subject to access being retained for service providers. The purchaser would be responsible for the provision of walls and gates.'
The laneway between Beechbrook Court and Grattan Park in Greystones, and the trees which were set on fire.