Dublin shelve plans for €45m Spawell stadium
Dublin chairman Seán Shanley has revealed that plans for a stadium at the Spawell site on the south side of the city have been shelved in favour of a centre of excellence-style development.
Dublin GAA acquired the 35-acre site for a fee in excess of €9m earlier this year amidst suggestions they would build a 25,000-seater stadium at the location. However, Shanley has dismissed that idea.
"It's ours, we own it, but it'll take a bit of time to sort out the leases in it," he said of the site.
"The whole place is leased out. There's rental income coming from it. We never wanted to be landlords, but basically we want the land where the pitch and putt and the driving range is. That's to be converted into five pitches, a bit like Abbotstown, so that will be Dublin's Centre of Excellence with a nice cluster of pitches."
Plans for a stadium are believed to have been costed at around €45m with Shanley questioning the need for venue of that size.
Instead, a much smaller arena that could be used to host club games will be included in the development.
"There won't be any stadium in it. Number one, it would take to long to try and get planning permission, as well as being too costly for the occasions you'd use a stadium there," he said.
"Parnell Park holds 10,000 so another stadium… if we have more than 10,000 we can go to Croke Park.
"Now, that's costly to open Croke Park for 20,000 but we don't have a decent pitch in the Spawell where local championship games can be played.
"Like, it's ridiculous bringing Ballyboden and Crokes over to Parnell Park. The likes of that could be played in the Spawell. We'd have a small viewing area like Abbotstown."
The hunt for the successor to Ger Cunningham as Dublin hurling manager will pick up pace in the coming weeks with Shanley insisting the appointment was vital for the future of hurling in the county.
"We can't afford to be putting it on the long finger with the hurling. The weeding out has been done. There's a lot of new blood there," he added. "We've won a few Leinster titles in minor and U-21 lately so as far as I'm concerned the hurlers are there, it's a matter of blending them together and getting over the line."