I’ve been a city councillor for the North Inner City since 2014. It is one of the nine wards in Dublin City. The North Inner City includes Stoneybatter, Smithfield, Phibsboro (South), North Circular Road, Mountjoy, Liffey Quays (North), East Wall, Dorset Street, Docklands (North), Clonliffe Road, Blessington Basin, Ballybough and Amiens Street.
The area has changed a lot over the last thirty years. The population fell significantly in the 1980s, but has had a dramatic rebound in recent years. There has been significant immigration from Africa, Eastern Europe and the Far East, giving rise to new opportunities and challenges. There’s been a huge amount of new apartments built in the area, some of poor design quality, but some decent housing in recent years
Employment in the Docks and in industry has practically disappeared, replaced with financial services and service industries. Drug use and disadvantage has brought devastation to many families, and we need to break the cycle of poverty. After the boom house prices are still too high for many, and the cost of renting has soared in recent years.
There’s a lack of green space in the north inner city, and there’s too much car traffic. Within the last year work has started on the new Grangegorman Campus for the Dublin Institute of Technology and the Cross-city Luas line. I want to ensure that there’s jobs for people who live in the north inner city in these projects, and provide the training for people who are out of work so that they can access employment.
Let’s give a stronger voice to the North Inner City. We can start by giving communities a real say in the decisions that affect them.