Questions on Florentine site answered
ONGOING questions about the sale price of the Florentine site are like ‘groundhog day’, according to Cllr John Ryan.
Cllr Brendan Thornhill raised the matter last Tuesday evening at a meeting of Bray Municipal District.
The disposal was agreed recently at a full meeting of Wicklow County Council, for €2.6 million.
District Manager Des O’Brien explained that a purpose of striving to get the Florentine Centre built was to bring vitality back to the town of Bray.
He said that the centre had been identified continuously as a high priority in the Economic Think Tank among other engagements.
Houses on Eglinton Road, which borders the site, were already run down when the council acquired them.
‘One has no ground floor. There is dry rot in all of them,’ he said. ‘We didn’t do anything with them. We repaired roofs and took down a dangerous chimney. The houses were secured with no real deterioration,’ said Mr O’Brien.
He said that the site might well have been worth more than the agreed price. ‘We weren’t selling a car park or a site to the highest bidder,’ said Mr O’Brien. ‘Someone had to provide a shopping centre and within a limited time,’ he said. ‘I thought it was clear at this stage.’
Cllr Pat Vance said that this had already been discussed at Wicklow County Council. ‘29 out of 32 councillors voted for this,’ he said.
‘ The decision has been made,’ said Cllr John Ryan. ‘I have to commend the director for his patience and the relaxed way he answered the question. I can tell you if I was in your position I wouldn’t be that patient.
‘ This is groundhog day,’ said Cllr Ryan. ‘Asking the same question and wasting time. The town needs to move forward. This project will be the making of this town,’
Cllr Thornhill agreed and said that the time has come to get this done. ‘I’m a public representative and people want to see openness.’
Plans for the forthcoming Florentine Centre.