Boarded up: 'it is a very bad sign if we can't even maintain something as simple as a boardwalk'

THE Liffey Boardwalk has been labelled "dangerous and unsafe" after it emerged dozens of broken lights will not be repaired for "weeks" to come. A section of the boardwalk is expected to be left in darkness for the foreseeable future after cable faults left a large amount of streetlights out of order.

Labour councillor Aodhán O'Riordáin said the development had rendered the quayside walkway "completely unsafe" and called for a health and safety review of the area. "It may turn out, as a result of a health and safety audit which will have to take place on the boardwalk, that there may have to be a temporary closure if, as the council says, it is going to take at least a few weeks to fix the lights, especially now that it is getting darker earlier. It could well be considered dangerous and unsafe for people walking along in the dark."

According to a spokesman for Dublin City Council, the delay in repairs is due to roadworks. "A number of the lights are currently not working because of cable faults. Because of roadworks restrictions, these faults can only be located and repaired on Sundays.

"This means that it will take several weeks to complete the works. Dublin City Council is addressing the issue and hopes to resolve it as soon as possible."

However, O'Riordáin said the delay showed the council was not prioritising city development.

"It is especially ironic that businesses are trying to attract people into the city centre and we are trying to make it more vibrant, and then we have a whole boardwalk in darkness for this length of time. It shows we don't exactly have our priorities straight, and it is a very bad sign if we can't even maintain something as simple as a boardwalk."

Separately, figures supplied to the Sunday Tribune show the cost of maintaining the Liffey Boardwalk stands at €92,600. "There is a maintenance inspection contract in place. This covers structural examinations of the boardwalk," said a spokesman.

"Given that the costs are so high, it is even more of a shame the area is be­sieged by issues such as this. We may find follow-up problems such as anti-social behaviour, and while it is still the fantastic initiative it started out as there are major problems here," added O'Riordáin.