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OPW to install portaloos in Phoenix Park to cope with more visitors this summer

The OPW’s chairman confirmed the move to Dublin City Council.

Image: Sasko Lazarov/RollingNews.ie

THE OFFICE OF Public Works is considering opening new restroom facilities in the Phoenix Park in anticipation of an increase in visitor numbers this summer.

In a letter to Dublin City Council, OPW Chairman Maurice Buckley confirmed that there were proposals for portaloos at two locations in the park for the summer period.

The letter follows the tabling of a motion to the council by Social Democrats councillor Cat O’Driscoll which called for the immediate improvement of toilet facilities in the park.

Buckley subsequently wrote to the council explaining that toilet facilities in the park can only be developed where there is suitable water and waste water infrastructure. 

“The only locations suitable for these facilities are currently at the Phoenix Park Visitor Centre, the Tea Rooms close to Dublin Zoo, and also Farmleigh Estate,” he said.

“The park is primarily a green space and the network of waste water is, as you can appreciate, limited to certain areas.

“Therefore, it is not possible to install additional permanent facilities at multiple locations.

“However, proposals for temporary portaloos are being considered for two additional locations within the park for the summer period.”

The development comes weeks after Minister of State for the OPW Patrick O’Donovan suggested no such plans were in place.

In reply to a Parliamentary Question to Social Democrats TD Gary Gannon, the minister warned that temporary facilities could be vandalised and difficult to maintain.

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“There are no plans to install temporary facilities throughout the Park as these may be subject to vandalism and it would be difficult to maintain them to an appropriate hygiene standard,” O’Donovan said.

“Further it is not possible to install permanent facilities at multiple sites in the Park due to limited waste water system across the Park.

“Therefore, permanent facilities are located where appropriate infrastructure already exists.”

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