Park plan for former County Kildare landfill in Naas is approved by An Bord Pleanala

From a landfill to a public amenity

Paul O'Meara

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Paul O'Meara

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paul@leinsterleader.ie

Park plan for former County Kildare landfill is approved by ABP

The entrance to Kerdiffstown near Naas

The redevelopment of the former landfill site in Kerdiffstown, near Naas, can go ahead.

An Bord Pleanala has given the green light to KCC plan to turn the site — once described as the “most complained about landfill site in Ireland” — into a public park. The main feature of the development will be three synthetic pitches suitable for multiple field sports — GAA, rugby and soccer, with floodlighting.

KCC has already concluded the compulsory purchase procedure allowing it to buy the land.

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KCC already owned some of the land, while other land parcels were owned by companies associated with the management of the landfill site when it was open. It hopes to start construction work in the third quarter of 2019. It is estimated that the project will take six years to complete. The council’s plan is to provide an amenity park with a multi-sports facility. It will have vehicle/pedestrian/ cycle entrances, public walkways and informal tracks, a car park with 100 spaces and an overspill car park.

There will also be changing rooms (4), toilets, a storeroom, bicycle parking and fencing.

The estimated overall project cost is €30m to €40m.

The dump site was closed down on foot of court order in 2011 after a series of internal fires within mounds of waste sent smoke and smells into the atmosphere.

This was followed by a multi-million euro clean-up operation. This was a multi agency round-the-clock response which included bringing in expertise from Holland to deal with the issue of extinguishing fires which were not even visible. Thermal imaging was used to locate some of the blazes.

It was led by the Environmental Protection Agency, an organisation that was criticised by many people including local residents over how the dump was being managed.

However, the clean up operation was a success and it succeeded in avoiding any serious pollution, including the leaking of leachate from the site into water courses.

In a follow-up statement to the ABP decision, KCC said the permission marks another milestone for the project and the remediation work will “significantly reduce the potential environmental impact the site could have on the surrounding area.

“This will put an end to all issues that have results in odours in the past and pave the way for a new public park, which is a much needed asset for the expanding populations of Naas, Sallins, Johnstown, Kill and beyond.” the statement added.