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Park potholes shaming us in front of visitors

Massive potholes on the main road through the Phoenix Park are damaging its image to visiting diplomats and tourists, a councillor has warned.

The potholes -- some of which are four to five feet wide -- on Chesterfield Avenue, are creating ongoing problems for distinguished guests to the Aras an Uachtaran and Farmleigh House -- as well as for city commuters.

Cllr Seamus McGrattan said the poor condition of the road is spoiling the image of Europe's largest park, and is making the scenic journey difficult for visitors.


"When diplomats are going to Farmleigh, it's the road they use. When you're driving through it's very scenic and it's ideal to bring diplomats to Farmleigh, but when you're driving through, it can do damage.

"This affects commuters coming in from Castleknock and Blanchardstown as well," he added. "People are constantly dodging them. They're actually dangerous, and when the snow builds up you don't know what you're driving on, whether it's a black hole or ice."

A Major Options Report is being prepared by the Office of Public Works -- which is responsible for managing the park -- for dealing with the condition of Chesterfield Avenue.

And a spokesperson for the OPW agreed that filling in the potholes is currently only a short-term solution, and a long- term solution for Chesterfield Avenue is being examined.

He said: "The potholes are currently being filled in. We're doing the best we can.

"As soon as we are being made aware of them, we are filling them in. Potholes are caused by excessively cold weather and heavy traffic. Snow and ice expand in existing cracks and widen to create deeper potholes."

Cllr McGrattan said Chesterfield Avenue was never designed to carry the level of traffic it does on a daily basis.

"That's a park road and it wasn't built for traffic on it. It wasn't designed as a major commuter route and there has to be more work done on it."