Independent Cllr Kieran McCarthy has welcomed progress on Marina Park. In response to Cllr McCarthy’s question on the floor of the most recent City Council meeting to the Chief Executive, he was informed that Phase 1 of the contract commenced in early March 2020 with a scheduled completion date of May 2021. Works were suspended on 30 March due to the COVID – 19 lock-down in accordance with Government guidelines. Works resumed on site on 18 May following the lifting of restrictions for construction works. The contractor is making great progress on the works and is confident of achieving the scheduled completion date of May 2021.
Phase One, which covers the area from the Marquee Link Road (linking Monahan and Centre Park roads) to Páirc Uí Chaoimh, also incorporates new pathways, the installation of sunken lawn areas as well as the diversion of a watercourse.
The current works comprise the creation of a new public car park at the Shandon Boat Club end of the Marina, as well as a new cycle lane and pedestrian walkway (all completed), and the installation of a prominent red steel pavilion on the site of, and reproducing, the essence of the central hall of the former Munster Showgrounds.
Liam Casey, senior parks and landscape officer with the Council has noted in recent weeks that this structure will be roofed, but the sides will not be enclosed, and there will be opportunities for coffee pods and outdoor seating and arts and crafts.
Cllr McCarthy noted: “there is local excitement about the Marina Park development. It is now over seven years since the Part 8 document came before the City Council. The park was held up in the early days due to a lack of funding but has since received funded from an Urban EU funding pot. This is enough finances to develop phase one of the park, which is basically the foundations and greening of the former brownfields site of the former showgrounds”.
However, Cork City Council anticipates that it will go to tender later in November for the second phase of its bold Marina Park project which will ultimately see the formation of a contemporary city park, about five times the size of the famous FitzGerald’s Park. Phase 2, which concentrates on development to the east of Páirc Uí Chaoimh, takes in the Atlantic Pond and continues down as far as Blackrock Village.