Four Districts Woodland Habitat are a local group of residents from Rathcoole and Saggart, working to promote and help preserve the wild woodland habitat which currently links the villages of Rathcoole and Saggart. This site, by the local park, has real potential as an amenity for the communities, as a haven for wildlife and as a living example for nature education. Wild green spaces are becoming rarer in South Dublin. Spending time in nature improves our mental and physical health, and reduces stress. The Woodland provides great walking trails. The trees, wildflowers and waterways within are vital habitats and food sources. They enable birds, frogs, mammals, and insects like bees and butterflies to thrive. Trees absorb water, lessening local flooding. They release oxygen, improving our air quality. They store carbon, helping against climate change.
The group has requested representation from South Dublin County Council and a request was made for a bio diversity study to be carried out on the area, however this was declined. The petition is currently holding 1000 plus signatures and this is ever increasing. Following on from a successful public meeting which was held at the end of August, there are some key dates to note in the coming weeks. On the 18th of September the Local Area Meeting for Clondalkin Councillors of South Dublin County Council takes place at 3pm. The group have had some support from local Councillors and T.D.’s but they do need help from the local community. And on the 25th of September at 3pm, a full South Dublin County Council meeting will be held.
Help secure the Woodland for future generations and enrich your locality by volunteering your time, donating money or skill and by signing the petition. To make direct contact with the group see Four-Districts-Woodland-Group on facebook or call one of the group contacts; Deirdre Healy 087 2301193, Neville Graver 085 8043928 or Annie Flynn 086 3632967.
Detailed key to SDCC Master Plan
1 lands at Rathcoole Local Centre
2 Indicative primary access points
3 Zoned education site
4 – Provisional library site
5 Proposed pitches
6 Pavillion building
7 Maintenance building
8 Shared Surface Area
9 Existing stream and ecological corridor
10 Car parking
11 Southern open space amenity
12 Play spaces
13 Amenity area
Local Clondalkin LEA Cllr Emer Higgins commented “The Housing Director of the Council recently presented a proposal for 250 houses, a number of GAA pitches, a primary school and a library to be built in Rathcoole behind Coolamber and Rathcoole Park (estate). In my contribution to the discussion, I spoke about the need to ensure that adequate traffic management is delivered in Rathcoole as a matter of urgency. I also requested that a bio-diversity study of this site, which includes a woodland area, be conducted and asked for any proposals for this site to include provision of a new primary school, which I believe we need.”
“The Council planners are developing an architectural proposal for the site which will be published for public consultation before being presented to the 40 Councilors for approval or rejection, later this year. All Councils across the country are tasked with utilizing public land, already zoned for housing, to deliver housing. This is a vital part of the plan to tackle the housing crisis. I want to make sure that the correct sites are selected and that they are developed in a sustainable way. At peak times Rathcoole is choked with traffic and we need to make sure we tackle those kind of issues as we build out. A 3 tonne limit on vehicles between 7am and 10am and the upgrade of existing junctions are easy measures that should be incorporated into plans for any further development of Rathcoole.”