Cork City Council commissions city centre strategy 

Cork City Council commissions city centre strategy 

Cork City Council has commissioned a city centre strategy which will provide the framework for how the city will grow and develop in the coming years. Photo: Joleen Cronin

CORK City Council has commissioned a city centre strategy which will provide the framework for how the city centre will grow and develop in the coming years.

Speaking at Monday night's full council meeting Fearghal Reidy, Director of Strategic Economic Development at Cork City Council, said the work on the strategy would commence this week.

"We have an expert panel of architects, urban designers, economists, along with expertise from Government departments and global insight. 

"It will look at international comparators and what’s good practice internationally. 

"It will also look at the existing instruments and how suitable they are to address living in the city and turning the city into a much better experience either culturally or from an activity perspective or from a commercial, leisure and hospitality perspective. So quite broad terms of reference," Mr Reidy said.

 A very quiet Princes Street, Cork on the first day of the new level 5 restrictions. Picture Dan Linehan
A very quiet Princes Street, Cork on the first day of the new level 5 restrictions. Picture Dan Linehan

He said the strategy will build on the 'Re-imagining Cork City' programme unveiled last summer and will work in parallel with initiatives already underway.

"It should be completed in a short period of time and there should be considerable public consultation and stakeholder consultation on it," he added. 

Several councillors had expressed concerns about the city centre at Monday's meeting. 

Solidarity councillor Fiona Ryan said she felt there is an excessive amount of hotels in the pipeline for the city centre.

We have an overabundance of hotels in planning, we have an overabundance of hostels, we have an overabundance of non-residential development, build-to-rent for example, which will be inordinately expensive in order to be profitable.

"I think that focusing on the derelict sites, particularly from a social housing and affordable housing perspective is key," she said.

Meanwhile, Worker's Party councillor Ted Tynan said he would also like to see more people living in the city centre.

"You have areas such as North Main Street, Grattan Street and a number of other derelict buildings at sites around the city. 

I think it’s a golden opportunity for city council to encourage families to come back into the city centre under the mixed-income public housing programme.

"I would like to see more of a mix in the city centre, bringing families and children into the city centre to revitalising it and make it vibrant again.

"Young couples and children will certainly do that, rather than it being turned into one big public house or something like that," he said.

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