Builders warn of looming crisis over capital rubble
The construction industry has warned of a looming crisis over the removal of rubble from major capital projects such as the National Children's Hospital, the Metro North and large-scale housing developments - because there is nowhere in Dublin to dump it.
PJ Rudden, director of the RPS Group told the annual conference of the Construction Industry Federation at Croke Park that there was no site in Dublin licensed to take stone and soil, despite its "uncontaminated" status.
This situation not had been a problem 10 years ago, he said, adding that the nearest site now available was in south Leinster, putting developers at great expense to remove construction and demolition waste there.
The conference heard Cork was also "running out of space fast" for such waste.
Mr Rudden warned that illegal dumping of stone and soil may become a problem unless the licensing of recycling facilities is re-examined.
Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government Simon Coveney, who addressed the conference, said he would look into the issue.
Meanwhile, Dr Edgar Morgenroth, associate research professor of the ESRI told the conference that Cork city should be "at least doubled in size" to address the current imbalance of infrastructure across the country, with Dublin equivalent to the next 50 urban centres across Ireland combined.
And he warned that water was now at the top of our infrastructure issues because of the Irish Water debacle, saying that smaller utilities and water charges were "the way forward, in my view."
In a discussion on the Government's Housing Strategy, John McCartney, director of research at Savills described the plan as ambitious. He said certain parts were "overblown" - such as the idea of using existing housing stock - adding he did not believe a large amount could be unlocked.