Calls for city council to purchase former hotel site and turn it into a regional park

Calls for city council to purchase former hotel site and turn it into a regional park
Pictured is Cllr Ger Keohane, at the site of the former John Barleycorn Hotel, Riverstown, Glanmire, Cork.Cllr Keohane wants the City Council to buy the site and turn it into a regional park.Picture: Jim Coughlan.

A CITY councillor has requested that Cork City Council buy the old John Barleycorn site in Glanmire.

Independent councillor Ger Keohane wants the 5.4-acre site transformed into a regional park for the public, which could potentially be linked up with a neighbouring park, while the old hotel building could also be used for some small offices.

He raised the issue at this weeks’ meeting of the North East Local Area Committee, and he told The Echo the motion was “well-received” and said “everyone’s in agreement” with the idea.

“Glanmire is rapidly expanding with new house builds and hundreds more to follow. There are no green spaces available anywhere in Glanmire now due to expansion and this site would be ideal for the community to enjoy,” Mr Keohane said.

The site in question backs onto the John O’Callaghan Park, which raises the possibility of the two sites joining. Meanwhile, the Glanmire and Riverstown Greenway, which is being developed under the Local Infrastructure Housing Activation Fund, is set to run through the site.

An aerial view of the John Barleycorn site
An aerial view of the John Barleycorn site

Mr Keohane said he couldn’t get an answer as to how much was being spent on purchasing part of the land for the Greenway, and said that if a significant sum was being spent, the council should agree to purchase it in its entirety.

“I think we could go a step further and purchase it all. We need to push for it. The green spaces are not there in Glanmire anymore,” Mr Keohane said.

The once-popular wedding venue and surrounding lands are currently zoned for town centre development.

“It could be turned into a lovely regional park with lighting for the public,” he said.

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