Now that the green area in Corrib Park has been protected for public use and enjoyment, the Galway City Council must develop amenities for the locality to promote physical activity in the locality.
This is the view of Labour Cllr Colette Connolly, whose motion calling for the lands in Corrib Park to rezoned from residential to recreational and amenity was passed at Monday’s city council meeting.
The status of the lands has been of concern for some time since it emerged that City Hall was considering building houses on a part of the green site.
In March, an unsigned letter emanating from City Hall was delivered to some Corrib Park residents, giving details of a meeting to discuss the building of six new houses for the elderly on part of the park.
Residents were furious that their local amenity and green area was to be built over, while Galway City Central councillors appeared not to have been informed about the plans for the area.
The area was zoned residential which would allow for the building to take place. Local councillors demanded the area be rezoned and protected for local people’s use. City manager Joe MacGrath sought legal advice on the issue. In August, legal advice returned saying councillors had the right to instruct the city manager to commence a variation process under Section 140 of the Local Government Act 2001.
Cllr Connolly then submitted a motion calling on the council to rezone the land to recreational and amenity. This was supported by the majority of councillors at Monday’s meeting.
She rejected claims by the city manager that building houses on the site “would be in the common good” arguing that local residents made their views known “very clearly last March” that they did not want more houses in the area.
“There is not enough RA zoned lands in the Westside area and I have constantly been calling for funding to upgrade the green areas that have suffered from neglect for many years. There is an absolute need to invest and develop the amenities of the area in consultation with the residents to promote physical activity and improve the mental well-being of all residents