Unfinished dwellings on the site of the old Motel in Cashel pose a serious health and safety risk to the public,
according to Cllr Tom Wood.
Cllr Wood told this month’s Tipperary/Cashel Municipal District Meeting that the former hotel site in Ballypaudeen had received permission for building 50 two-storey dwellings, but the development had become mired in legal wrangle after the Co. Council took legal action to stop construction. The developer has since taken a legal action against the Council. Cllr Wood called for an update to clarify at what stage the matter is now at. The last call had been by An Bord Pleanála which had ordered that the front of some of the buildings be removed. “Nothing has happened since,” said Cllr Wood. That site, from the “Celtic Tiger era”, is now a “safety and security” hazard and is standing on mountains of slag and construction rubble. “Where is it going from here? Do we have to wait until these dwellings tumble down on to the old Dublin road? What is our position?” he asked.
Cllr Wood said that it’s been five years since An Bord Pleanála’s decision. “What is the time frame for any work to be done?”
Cllr Roger Kennedy said he would like clarity on the matter. The Ballypaudeen site is very visible coming into Cashel - a major tourist town - and for tourists to see the site lying derelict is most unwelcome, he said. Director of Services Carl Cashen said Ballypaudeen is an “eyesore”. There have been delays with cleaning the site up. “Unfortunately, it’s before the Courts. And we cannot say anymore,” said Mr Cashen.
Separately, Cllr Denis Leahy called for more incentives to rejuvenate the town centres of Tipperary and Cashel. Up to one third of owner occupied businesses are “completely empty” in Cashel’s town centre, according to Cllr Wood. “The town centres are literally dying.”
A street in Cashel known as the ‘back of the pipes’ has a at least three vacant premises side by side which are “structurally dangerous”. “That street will have to be cordoned off. It’s very very unfair on businesses adjacent to them.” High winds or a storm could easily knock off slates, said Cllr Wood, who called for action to be taken. “Something needs to be done to promote people living in the town centres of Cashel and Tipperary.”
Senior Engineer Mr Aidan Finn said the Council’s Environment Section are acting on the matter. A licence to put up scaffolding has been obtained for the ‘back of the pipes’ to secure the structure. Cllr Wood said there should be a time limit on keeping the scaffolding up, and compared it to the unsightly scaffolding on the Rock of Cashel. The back of the pipes shouldn’t become a “no go area.”
Mr Finn said the scaffolding will cost money and there has been no discussion regarding closing the street. “The scaffolding itself will form a safety barrier.” “The owner has appointed an engineer directly, and that engineer has been in contact with us,” added Mr Finn.