Looking for sports club toilets
The city’s sports clubs have asked the council how to put changing rooms and toilets next to their training grounds, especially as more and more girls are joining the teams.
At Monday’s meeting of Dublin City Council’s Arts, Culture, Leisure and Leisure Committee, Les Moore, the city’s parks superintendent, said the council already had many projects in place and that he would therefore not be able to build changing rooms for each club. who urgently needs it.
Instead, officials have drawn up a draft policy to explain to clubs wanting to build facilities how to go about obtaining planning permission from the council to build on council land, on which there is a lot of land. training.
“So what we wanted to do was help clubs develop dressing rooms,” Moore said during the meeting.
Séamas McGrattan, a Sinn Féin councilor, says he would prefer the council apply for planning permission themselves, finance and build changing rooms and then lease them to clubs.
Some clubs can build whatever they want on the pitch, he said. “And basically it’s like privatizing public space.”
Moore said the council would not allow “unnecessary” rooms like gymnasiums and facilities would not be larger than necessary. “I think we’re looking for fairly basic dressing rooms, unless an argument is made for something else.”
McGrattan says the board should ensure that on shared grounds, clubs with the resources to pay for dressing rooms do not own the dressing rooms any more than smaller clubs. “I still think if we could do it in partnership with clubs, that would be the best way.”
Said Moore: “If there is an imbalance between a club that has a lot of resources and another that does not mean that we would always seek to intervene and support the case of the club that does not have the resources to use this sharing ease.”
Currently, the draft policy uses the word “elimination” in a few places.
Deirdre Heney, a Fianna Fáil councilor, said the council should remove any reference to disposing of the land as it would be public land and should not be sold. “We own the land, you know, we don’t want to dispose of the land.”
Moore said the mention of disposal is a technical definition and he will clarify it in the future draft policy. “We don’t cede, cede the ground to clubs or any other group.”
Union adviser Alison Gilliland said it could be cost prohibitive for a club to go through a planning commission and bring in an architect. “When I look in my own community, I see very small, cash-strapped clubs.”
The board should share responsibility with the community and cooperate with clubs, Gilliland said.
Mícheál MacDonnacha, a Sinn Féin adviser, said the board should create standardized plans for basic dressing rooms, for clubs that cannot afford an architect.
“I think we have to do everything we can to help clubs develop them where they are appropriate,” he said. “Obviously I accept that we may not be able to develop them ourselves or fund them ourselves.”
Moore said the council has developed changing rooms in Finglas, Tolka Valley, Springdale and Poppintree, he says “We’re not going to stop doing that.”
But writing this policy aims to make it clear how clubs can build their own facilities, faster than the board can, he said. “On terms suitable to Dublin City Council.”
There should be requirements for changing rooms to be accessible and have public toilets and drinking water, said Social Democrat councilor Cat O’Driscoll.
Said Moore: “It is difficult to require clubs to provide public toilets because we cannot meet the standard or maintenance of these.”
Push for LGBTQ+ artwork
The council is talking with LGBTQ+ groups about a potential large piece of artwork to represent their community, Ruairí Ó Cuív, the public art manager for the city’s arts office, said at Monday’s committee meeting. of Arts, Culture, Leisure and Recreation of Dublin City Council.
“Obviously it’s more complex than just the work of the arts office, as anything that goes into the public domain involves different sections of the city council,” he said.
The idea originated from a 2016 suggestion by activist and DJ Tonie Walsh for an Irish AIDS memorial, but the vision has since widened, according to a council report.
One group was assembled by Dublin Pride and included people representing LGBT Ireland, Transgender Equality Network Ireland, GCN Magazine, Queer Culture Ireland and GAZE Film Festival.
In April, the council’s arts office held a workshop to help the group decide on a proposal to submit to the council.
Says Ray Yeates, the city’s arts officer, “It’s very important that they have a unified approach to this.”
A permanent public artwork would make the LGBTQ+ community more visible and part of the city’s architecture, participants said, according to the workshop report. “We don’t want to be on the periphery, we want to be at the center of things.”
Yeates said public art of this type can cost up to €300,000, but the group could seek funding from Dublin City Council, the Department of Culture or the Arts Council.
The room could also be a space, a place where people can gather and organize events or performances. It could be at Meeting House Square, Curved Street, Barnardo Square or Temple Bar Square, it reads.
The report says the groups intend to hold a consultation with the wider LGBTQ+ community to come up with a final proposal.
Design public seats
Public seating should be designed for people of different heights, for those who might find it difficult to sit down and have armrests for standing up, says union adviser Mary Freehill.
“To make sure that in fact parks can make things easier for older people,” she said.
Councilors at Monday’s arts and culture committee meeting agreed with her, backing a motion co-signed by three other councilors for the council to do just that.
Alison Gilliland, a Labor councillor, said she feared there had been a move away from what might be called traditional seats. “And we just want to make sure there’s consideration for older people, those with less mobility.”
“It’s something that comes up often,” Gilliland said. “It’s the waist issue where you have people who may have had hip surgeries.”
Anne Feeney, a Fine Gael councilor, said ensuring seats were accessible would make a huge difference for older and more vulnerable people. “It’s a simple thing, really, to do well.”
New seating designs should be considered with accessibility in mind, she says. “And the renovation of some existing seats, which shouldn’t be too difficult to add as well.”
Green Party councilor Donna Cooney said the council should also not place benches next to bins. “So they don’t have, you know, smell, nasty smells or bees or wasps or anything.”
There has been a lot of research on public seating suitable for older people, she said. “We don’t need to reinvent the wheel.”
Freehill said, “The most important thing is that the parks service can take the decision we made and implement it.
Les Moore, the city’s parks superintendent, said they accept the point raised by the motion. “And we will take that into account.”