Mayor of South Dublin County launches Council’s 5 year Tourism Strategy

SDCC Tourism Strategy

The Mayor of South Dublin County Council, Cllr Alan Edge, launched the Councils’ new five year tourism strategy at an event in Tallaght Stadium last Thursday.  The document is intended to guide the activities and work programme of South Dublin County from 2024 to 2029. Underpinned by extensive stakeholder engagement within the county, and at regional and national level, as well as extensive research, the strategy provides a clear direction for all tourism stakeholders. 

Speaking at the event the Mayor said “As the cultural and economic landscape continues to evolve, the importance of strategic planning for tourism cannot be overstated. South Dublin County, with its rich history, diverse communities, and stunning landscapes, stands poised to become a beacon for visitors from home and abroad, eager for all the authentic experiences that the gateway to the Dublin Mountains has to offer.”

He went to say that ‘this comprehensive strategy reflects our commitment to unlocking the full potential of South Dublin County as a vibrant and sustainable tourist destination. By embracing innovation and fostering collaboration between local stakeholders, we aim to create an environment where tourism not only thrives but also contributes significantly to the well-being of our communities.”

The strategy aims to plan sustainably for the next phase of the county’s tourism evolution, position South Dublin to capitalise on its strongest assets, build on the previous tourism strategy and ensure that tourism supports inclusive economic growth in South Dublin.

The Chief Executive of South Dublin County Council Colm Ward outlined the Council’s ambition to spearhead the future development of tourism in collaboration with local businesses and communities as well national and regional partners. “Our €100million planned investment in tourism under this strategy, including for projects such as the Dublin Mountains Visitor Centre, Tallaght Heritage Centre, 12th Lock along the Grand Canal, and The Castle Stables and Courtyards at Rathfarnham, along with our active travel network incorporating the Dodder, and Grand Canal, and Canal Loop Greenways, demonstrate an ambitious but sustainable approach to tourism”, he said.

“We all know the economic impact and job creation that tourism can bring, but aspirations for growth are, of course, accompanied by a commitment to nature, culture and heritage as well as community engagement. Collaboration with our key partners, has been integral to shaping a really relevant strategy that reflects a shared commitment to elevate tourism in South Dublin in a sustainable and authentic way.”

As a base line study, the Council discovered that the estimated value of tourism in South Dublin County totals €140m a year to the County, with an estimated 3,780 jobs based on tourism. This returns up to €32.2m to the Irish Enqueuer annually. The council expects that during the period of the strategy revenue will grow up to €216million, with up to 5,427 jobs based on tourism. 

Over 80 people attended the event at Tallaght Stadium to mark the launch of the Council’s new five year tourism strategy on Thursday 22 February. Representatives from  Fáilte Ireland, The Irish Tourism Industry Confederation (ITIC) and the Association of Visitor Experiences and Attractions (AVEA) joined representatives from the local tourism industry to hear Mayor of South Dublin Cllr Alan Edge launch the comprehensive document which reflects the Council’s commitment to unlock the full potential of South Dublin County as a vibrant and sustainable tourist destination.

Councillors from across the County were also present to hear the Chief Executive of South Dublin County Council Colm Ward say that major investments in projects like the Dublin Mountains Visitor Centre, Tallaght Heritage Centre, 12th Lock along the Grand Canal and the Castle Stables and Courtyards at Rathfarnham, along with the council’s active travel network incorporating the Dodder, and Grand Canal Greenways, demonstrate the Council’s dedication to sustainable experiences whilst preserving the County’s authenticity.

The  launch event hosted by the Council’s County Promotion Unit, also provided an opportunity for visitor attractions and activity providers to showcase their offering to those present with an opportunity to network. The OPW were present to highlight the spectacular offerings at their two sites in South Dublin; Rathfarnham Castle and Pearse Museum in St Enda’s Park., whilst activity providers Zipit and Rafting.ie provided information on the thrills available at their sites. The Dublin Mountains Partnership provided information on the Dublin Mountains Way, a 42km walking route across the mountains from Tallaght to Shankill. The Chlann Chrónáin volunteer tour guides from Clondalkin were present to highlight the tours and events they organise in and around the Round Tower Visitor Centre, whilst the Civic Theatre featured their extensive cultural and entertainment programme. Sports fans were also catered for with a stand hosted by Tallaght Stadium, Grange Castle Golf Club, and Shamrock Rovers FC, who brought the FAI Premier Division League trophy with them.

At the core of the strategy is five strategic priorities which will ensure South Dublin County can build on success and realise it’s potential as a thriving visitor destination within the Dublin region. The previous tourism strategy set the scene and put in motion a number of significant tourism projects, and the majority of these seven pipeline projects will be completed during the lifetime of the strategy. Projects such  as the Dublin Mountain Visitor Centre, the Tallaght Heritage Centre, and the Dodder greenway will contribute to the range of compelling attractions and activities in the County.

The new strategy also identified six new catalytic projects capable of contributing to the transformation of tourism in South Dublin. These new projects included the Lucan House opportunity study, identifying an optimum use for creating a compelling and exciting tourism hub in Lucan, to exploring opportunities for visitors to stay overnight in the South Dublin area, in turn generating spin off economic opportunities, to developing a bus service linking urban areas and transport hubs such as the new Tallaght transport interchange with key hubs such as the Dublin Mountains Visitor Centre and activity providers in the Dublin Mountains.

Pic: Lafayette Photography

Sarah Brooks

Sarah Brooks

Sarah has worked in marketing and content creation for many years. In her role at Newsgroup, she is the online editor of www.newsgroup.ie with a particular interest in local news and events. Sarah also works closely with our editorial team on our printed editions in Tallaght, Lucan, Clondalkin and Rathcoole/Saggart. If you have a story and would like to make contact please email Sarah at info@newsgroup.ie.

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