Tuesday, 11 June 2019

Ceisteanna (186)

Clare Daly


186. Deputy Clare Daly asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the timetable for the level of public funds expended by Fáilte Ireland on the strategic vision for the Phoenix Park exercise in view of the way in which it was publicised and the fact that the full report was not online to facilitate consideration by the public, resulting in the perception that citizens were disenfranchised and excluded from the consultation; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [23699/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Public)

In April 2017, Fáilte Ireland announced €11.5m in funding from its Capital Grants budget for ten key OPW projects in Dublin and within the Ireland’s Ancient East region. The funding was provided in the context of Fáilte Ireland’s strategic partnership with the OPW and the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht to assist in the refurbishment and enhancement of key visitor attractions at major heritage sites. Fáilte Ireland’s strategic partnership is one of a number of partnerships the tourism body has entered into with other State agencies such as Coillte and the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) to work together to grow tourism.

The Draft Phoenix Park Visitor Experience Strategic Review was commissioned by the OPW with grant funding of €300,000 from Fáilte Ireland (accounting for 75% of the cost of the project). To date, €286,176 has been expended on the project.

The review document does not represent a vision for the Phoenix Park or a development plan. Nor is it part of a statutory public consultation process of any kind. The OPW considered it appropriate to bring the key findings and ideas in the Review into the public domain so that the public could engage with the recommendations and offer their observations. As part of this process local representatives, stakeholders, community groups, and the press were informed about the Review and the public display. A comprehensive Executive Summary of the full draft review was developed in order to assist the public in engaging with the core findings and ideas presented by the independent consultants and placed on line. Indeed if any party wishes to see the full draft Report this can be arranged. A hard copy of the full 202-page review with case studies and visitor research was available for the public to view at the Phoenix Park Visitor Centre. The OPW remains open, and indeed welcomes, any further comments or observations from any party in relation to the Review.