Shanganagh madness must stop - Ó Snodaigh
Following the announcement by Dun Laoghaire – Rathdown County Council that after the 6.33 acre site at Shanganagh Castle is sold by Minister for Justice Michael McDowell to private developers, they intend to buy it back, Sinn Fein Justice Spokesperson and Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD described the situation as ‘absolute madness’. He went on to call for the process to be stopped in its tracks, pointing out that the people of Shankill should not be made to suffer the consequences of the debacle over Thornton Hall.
The Dublin South Central TD said: “Not only did the purchase of Thornton Hall by Justice Minister Michael McDowell amount to a wasteful, dodgy deal, but now it appears that the people of Shankill are to suffer the consequences. Just as the tendering process for the purchase of the site at Thornton Hall involved a wasteful overspend of tax payers money, it seems the current process for the sale of the site at Shanganagh Castle by the Minister will result in a similar rip-off.
“The Fine Gael chair of Dun Laoghaire- Rathdown County Council has announced that he intends for the Council to purchase Shanganagh Castle, which is currently state-owned, back from private developers after the PD Justice Minister sells it to the developers in the first place. Clearly the interim transaction between McDowell and the developers will massively inflate the price at which the Council must purchase the Castle. This is absolute madness and the whole process needs to be stopped in its tracks.
“Dún Laoghaire- Rathdown County Council purchased 21 acres of the land in 2003 and this is to be used for a mixed housing development. The rest of the site, including the castle, should be made available to the Council so that it can be used to reduce the disgracefully long waiting list for social housing which currently stands at 3,519 families, and to provide much needed public amenities. But McDowell is denying the people of Dun Laoghaire the site because, by his own admission, he needs to recoup the cost of the site he purchased earlier this year at Thornton Hall.
“Minister McDowell spent some €26 millions more than was necessary when he purchased Thornton Hall and it now seems that the people of Shankill are to suffer the consequences because they will be denied this land and the potential for social and affordable housing and public amenities that it could provide.”