Dublin Port ‘hijacking land’ for container storage during housing crisis, residents claim

The proposals for Dublin Port include a new bridge across the Liffey

Amy Blaney

Residents in Sandymount have voiced concerns over expansion plans launched today by Dublin Port.

The wide-ranging proposals, known as the 3FM project, include a new bridge across the River Liffey and building the largest storage facility in the country.

However, the Sandymount and Merrion Residents’ Association (SAMRA) said the proposed “hijacking of land” on the Poolbeg Peninsula for storage is “regressive” during a housing crisis.

Proposals launched today by the Dublin Port Company will significantly increase activities on the Poolbeg Peninsula by 2040.

A new container terminal, located in front of the ESB’s Poolbeg Power station, will be constructed with an ability to handle 353,000 containers annually.

SAMRA said the 3FM proposals are “inconsistent” with Dublin City Council’s vision for the area and will be visible to “tens of thousands” of residents.

“Dublin Port’s development plan proposes to use 20 acres of land, more than five times the size of Croke Park, to build a container storage facility and boiler station,” a spokesman for the residents group said.

“This area is adjacent to an accredited UNESCO Marine Biosphere and an EU Conservation Area noted for its rare and internationally important habitats and species of wildlife.

“This proposed facility will be visible to tens of thousands of people from the Pembroke Quarter Development, visitors to the area, and residents across Dublin Bay.

“It is wrong to use this unique finite amenity for storage when there is a city centre housing crisis,” the association added.

The group are calling for an international comparator study to establish if the land currently used by Dublin Port per tonne of goods handled per year is as efficient as it could be.

Dublin Port development plans

“This creeping type of port development is not how this unique finite city central resource should be used,” said David Turner, chairman of SAMRA.

“It may suit the businesses operating in the port but it is regressive for the needs of the community. 3FM needs to return to the drawing board.”

Proposals to redevelop Dublin Port opened to public consultation today and include constructing a lifting bridge across the River Liffey adjacent to the Tom Clarke Bridge to divert lorries and heavy traffic away from residential areas.

Plans also include a public park, floodlit playing pitches, cycle paths and a maritime village.

The facilities for the port itself will be redeveloped to meet capacity constraints and a growing volume of cargo going through the port.

The 3FM project is one of three major projects to bring Dublin Port to full capacity by 2040. Two of these projects, the ABR project and the MP2 project are already under construction.