Dun Laoghaire Development Plan Unveiled
Members of the public and harbor stakeholders are being invited by the Dun Laoghaire Cruise Stakeholder Group to submit their views on plans for the development of a new cruise berth facility for large cruise ships in Dun Laoghaire Harbor.
The two week public consultation process will open next Monday and is being launched in advance of an expected planning application to An Bord Pleanala for the project. The planning application will be made by Dun Laoghaire Harbor Company on behalf of the Dun Laoghaire Cruise Stakeholder Group.
The cruise industry is an important and growing sector of the tourism market. Cruise ships are getting bigger in size, offering more facilities to passengers, but requiring deeper water and longer berths of accommodate them. Over 50% of new ships currently on order are over 300m in length.
Gerry Dunne, CEO of Dun Laoghaire Harbor Company, said: “The Dun Laoghaire Harbor Masterplan, published in 2011, identified the need to develop strategies to ensure the long term future of the harbor, in view of the declining importance of ferry traffic. Development of cruise business was identified as one of the opportunities to be pursued. In addition, Dun Laoghaire is designated as a marine tourism port under the Government’s National Ports Policy and the development of the cruise business fits into this framework.”
At present Cobh is the only port in Ireland that can accommodate these vessels. If facilities are not put in place, Ireland risks losing out on the expanding cruise tourism market.