File photo of dumping in the area. Bawnogue Litter Watch/Facebook
st cuthbert's park

'It's like a scene out of The Wire': Building on Dublin housing site stopped after intimidation and vandalism

A local councillor said workers have been threatened and there have been reports of deliberate arson.

THE CONSTRUCTION OF a housing development in Clondalkin, Dublin, has ceased following reports of intimidation and vandalism around the site.

Sixty-three two and three-bedroom homes were being built on the site by Sisk.

Councillor Mark Ward, the Mayor of South Dublin, has called for a high level task force meeting to be held to deal with the issues in St Cuthbert’s Park, Bawnogue.

Ward said anti-social behaviour in the park is “well documented”, stating: “Open drug dealing, intimidation, stolen cars, scramblers and wanton vandalism are a daily occurrence.”

He said the problem has “escalated to such an extent the work has now stopped on the development” of the new homes, which are “badly needed in the current housing crisis”.

Workers are the subject of threats and intimidation. Their cars have also been vandalised. Tools have been stolen and there have been reports of deliberate arson on the building site.

Ward said he was in the park last week and “it was like a scene out of The Wire – you could see the drug dealing from the scramblers in broad daylight”.

‘Cars flipped over’ 

The Sinn Féin councillor said the task force that was set up to deal with these issues and also the redevelopment of the park has so far “failed to deliver anything tangible”, and he called on local gardaí to put additional resources into the area so the building can restart.

In March 2017, South Dublin County Council (SDCC) agreed to install CCTV cameras in the park but Ward said this is yet to happen. The goal is to have the live feed streamed into the local garda station.

Ward said the boundary wall around the park is approximately 1,520 meters long but cars are “either flipped over the wall, driven in over planks or, in recent cases, boulders are moved out of the way”.

“This wall was meant to be reinforced but that has not happened yet either,” he added.

At the time of publication, Sisk had not responded to a request for comment.

A spokesperson for the Department of Housing told SDCC would be best placed to comment on the situation as it is the contracting authority on this project, but a council spokesperson said SDCC has “no comment to make regarding this matter”.

With reporting by Hayley Halpin 

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