I enjoyed reading your article in the Summer edition of Afloat magazine on family sailing, and read with pleasure the praise you accorded my son Liam and his sons.
It was a bit of a shock then to turn the pages and find you supporting the construction of a massive pier to accommodate Cruise Liners in Dun Laoghaire Harbour. I do not understand your support of the destruction of a world class amenity. The harbour should be developed, but it must be developed as a State Park, a major sporting amenity for the people, not as a commercial white elephant.
Several cities and towns around the world are trying to ban entry to these ships.
The accompanying illustration of the harbour showed a tiny Cruise Liner under way. That's not what it will be. If this scheme goes ahead, we will have ships that are floating Manhattan size city blocks dominating the entire harbour and vicinity, towering fifteen stories high. There will probably be non-stop dredging of the approach to the harbour. Forty busses and a fleet of taxis will join the already congested traffic at rush hours, both morning and evening. A city sized power station in the harbour will belch pollution all day. The tourist spend is negligible.
Economically it is not viable, the harbour dues will not cover the cost of development, maintenance and operation. This may well lead to further commercialisation of the harbour, with further loss of amenities and further costs to the taxpayer who will have to fund this nonsense.
Dublin Port has the facilities, and is providing further facilities for Cruise Liners. Dun Laoghaire Harbour Board's plans are in competition with Dublin Port, and should be scrapped.
Blackrock, Co. Dublin
Read WM Nixon's response here