Either that or a member of their department bought too much aqua gear for their last family trip to Glendalough and needs a use for all of it.
The cost of the complex is a cool €15m, which, considering we’re in the middle of a pandemic and the lead up to a potential global recession not seen since the early 1900s, seems just a tad OTT. To make things even more bizarre, it’s hoped the development will be sited beside the proposed white water rafting centre at the IFSC. To be honest, we thought that whole episode was kiboshed and thrown into the ever-growing failure pile along with the Millenium Clock and the Bertie Bowl.
The main criticism of the white water rafting centre was that solving the housing crisis in Dublin was far more important than spending upwards of €10m on a luxury tourist attraction which would further alienate Dubliners from their city centre. To see a second non-essential amenity pop up in such a short space of time will surely infuriate locals further.
What this new plan does have in its favour is a complex that will include yoga facilities, a sauna, a café, and corporate meeting spaces alongside the 50m heated outdoor pool. All of which seem more practical for the general public compared to the rafting centre, and not just some haunt for big tech companies to bring their overworked staff on their quarterly Fri-Yay!
The plan is modelled on a similar facility in Helsinki which attracts over 800,000 visitors every year. The regeneration of the docklands area has been highlighted by the success of the EPIC museum and the likes of the Jeanie Johnston and it’s believed DCC want the outdoor pool complex to help galvanise that.
While having facilities like this for overseas visitors is great in theory, there are far more pressing issues to be dealt with in the inner city. For example, the dearth of recreational areas for younger people and the persistent ostracising of inner city residents, the same residents that are lauded for providing the craic and charm that comes with a visit to Dublin. In theory, a recreational space for everyone to avail of is a no-brainer, but judging by the prices of the white water rafting facility it’s reasonable to think young kids and families will be priced out of a Liffey dip.
Who’d have thought there’d be such a defined venn diagram containing Dublin City Council members and inner city kids that love jumping into the perma-grey Liffey water whenever the weather gets over 14 degrees celsius.
Considering the average temperature in Dublin is 10 degrees celsius, the idea of getting down to my Speedos isn’t something I’m majorly excited for, especially not beside one of the busiest work districts in the country. Please try harder DCC!