The new surface on Dublin’s historic Castle Market is not permanent and people still have a chance to campaign for a return to the red brick that was ripped up this week.
Controversial works to replace the iconic red-brick surface got underway earlier this week after Dublin City Council said they were no longer fit for purpose.
They are being replaced by sandstone matching the surface recently set down on nearby Wicklow, Exchequer and Drury streets.
The council said the old surface had become a “trip hazard” due to the deterioration of the bricks.
On Newstalk Breakfast this morning, Councillor Claire Byrne said the council “suddenly went ahead” with the plans with no real forewarning to local businesses.
She said Dubliners have a “real connection” with the cobblestones of Temple Bar and the brickwork on streets like Castle Market.
“I think what we need to do is take a breath and think about what we’re doing, instead of just throwing down the surface du jour,” she said.
“There is nobody thinking about the aesthetics here and the cultural connection people have with Castle Market – that beautiful carriageway connecting Coppinger Row with South William Street.”
Cllr Byrne said treating Castle Market in the same way as streets like Wicklow Street and Drury Street fails to appreciate its unique character.
“It has such a unique identify in and of itself,” she said. “We talk about the Grafton Street Quarter and it talks about character diversity and authenticity and yet we have just completely eroded that in this instance – we are doing that across the city at the moment.”
That head of aesthetics role is clearly still up for grabs in DCC.
Tarmac going into Castle Market 🙃
— Andrea Horan (@AndreaHoran) February 8, 2022
Even though DCC's statement yesterday said Castle Market was "not listed for future permanent Public Realm work", when questioned about how rotten it was Owen Keegan confirmed on the #hubmatters panel last night it wasn't permanent. But neither was Temple Bar.. pic.twitter.com/MUJXnKA4in
— Andrea Horan (@AndreaHoran) February 10, 2022
She said people can still have their say on the permanent street surface by answering the Dublin City Development Plan Consultation before Monday at 4:30pm.
“It is temporary surface so we do have an opportunity to campaign and look at replacing it with something that keeps the features and that unique identity,” she said.
“The deadline for submissions to the Dublin City Development plan, which is the Bible of how we redesign our city, is on Monday so I am asking people, please make a submission, have your voice heard.
“We can demand a better public realm and a better experience in the city. We might save our city and its character.”
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