A cultural shift, along with investment, would see more people using Dublin's River Liffey for recreation, one councillor has said.
It comes as swimming is set to return to the River Seine in the French capital after 100 years.
A €1.4 billion clean-up project has been completed in Paris ahead of next year's Olympics.
The 103rd Jones Engineering Dublin City Liffey Swim will take place in Dublin on September 2nd.
Councillor Cat O'Driscoll told reporter Josh Crosbie for Newstalk Breakfast that a change in mindset what's needed.
"A lot of our infrastructure is in really good shape, it's much more of a cultural shift," she said.
"How do we make people respect the river a bit more?"
Cllr O'Driscoll praised the Liffey Sweeper, which takes out litter that falls into the river, as "a really good resource."
"That [litter] is a hazard for anybody who would swim or use the water.
"We need to make it as safe as possible for people to be getting into the water, and to make it as accessible as possible".
Cllr O'Driscoll said investment is the next step.
"The Docklands and Dublin Port look after the bottom half of the river, and Dublin City Council look after the upper half," she said.
"We need a bit more of a coming together towards how we manage clearly, and the investment will need to come".
71-year-old Robert Clarke has fond memories of the city's river.
"I stared off swimming in the Liffey as a kid," he said.
"We used to tie ropes around our stomach and tie them to the bridge, and jump in and swim.
"If the rope came loose, the bigger lads would go after us and get us by the scruff of the neck and bring us back.
"I used to see them starting the Liffey Swim before I was ever involved in the sea racing.
"We used to throw stones at them, because they wouldn't let the young fellas go that was our age".
'We never gave a rat's ass'
Mr Clarke went on to win the Liffey Swim in 2004 and has taken part 17 times. He thinks the water is safe.
"I swam in the Liffey all my life and we never had an tetanus injections, we never had any anything," he said.
"We used to drink it and everything, swallow it, and we never gave a rat's ass about it.
"At my age growing up there was dead dogs sometimes in the corner.
"I'm still here today to tell the tale".
Leinster Open Sea Chairperson Bobby Nolan said the Liffey Swim is a major event on the racing calendar.
"This year we will have, I would say, 500 between men and women," he said.
"[The numbers] have dropped down a bit since COVID, believe it or not.
"We were over the 600 mark for our 100th [anniversary] - of course everyone wanted to swim the 100th Liffey.
"On the day, we will probably generate between 35,000 and 40,000 people down either side of the river.
"So it's a huge revenue generator for the bars and restaurants... and it's a real family day out".
Mr Nolan said the water itself is "literally" an acquired taste, but "has cleaned up massively, massively over the years," he added.
Listen back here: