*Bridget Ginnity (second from left). Photograph: Tom Micks
“MUTUALLY ACCEPTABLE SOLUTIONS” can be found amid the ongoing clash over plans in the Ennis 2040 Strategy, a local scientist has affirmed.
An approximate crowd of 200 people attended Tuesday’s silent march, organised by Save Ennis Town as they upped the volume on their opposition to plans in the Ennis 2040 Strategy to build a mixed-use development on Abbey Street car park.
Bridget Ginnity who is a regulatory scientist with the European Chemical Agency (ECHA) and a member of Save Ennis Town, said the initial consultation on the drafting of the economic and spatial strategy has diminished.
She stated, “There is broad support for all of this, we want the councillors to listen to our voice, we want genuine consultation, there had been consultation on Ennis 2040 in the early framework days but not on the concrete things, there is so much that is good in it and we don’t want that to be lost, we want progress and development of Ennis. The riverside car park can be developed in so many ways rather than having a large office block that is effectively private use in a public area”.
“I believe everybody has the wellbeing of Ennis at heart, if we all stop and talk together we will find a mutually acceptable solution, we’ve so many good sites available, the same investment that has been going into the architectural plans and the dig, if that had gone into supporting retailers it is a huge attraction to the town. I’m also involved in the Ennis Book Club Festival, the feedback we get all the time is how lovely the town is to come to and to shop in, the winding streets, the boutiques and that is the strength we need to build on”.
When asked what needs to happen to get representatives of Save Ennis Town and Ennis 2040 DAC into the same room, she quipped, “an invitation would help”.
Following Tuesday’s march, she was confident such an invitation would be extended in their direction. “I think at this stage when we’ve had the petition with over 3,500 signatures there will be an opportunity. I personally have sat down with Kevin Corrigan, he has been very open and helpful, we wouldn’t have come to the same conclusions at the end of the meeting”.
While Save Ennis Town oppose just the Abbey Street and Harvey’s Quay plans in the strategy, Bridget who will contest next year’s local elections for the Green Party is also against building a Data Centre. “The Ennis Data Centre is something I am very strongly against, there is lots of wonderful things about being a climate adaptive town but a Data Centre undoes all the good everyone does for our climate. That is not part of the Save Ennis Town philosophy, that is my own personal view and that of the Clare Green Party”.
A spokesperson for Ennis 2040 DAC when contacted by The Clare Echo for an update on the Data Centre responded, “Ennis 2040 D.A.C. is not involved with the data centre – any queries relating to the data centre should be forwarded to the company developing the data centre project”.