Proposals for a whitewater centre in St George’s Dock, Dublin 2. include a “swift water rescue training facility for the Fire Brigade and a kayaking and water polo pool…The white water rafting course will be located around the edge of the Dock with the swift water training facility and pool located in the centre”.

Adrian writes:

Recently, a proposal for a whitewater centre was put in front of Dublin City Council.

Unfortunately, the proposals received mixed reactions.

Dublin’s Lord Mayor, the cyclist-loving Nial Ring, described it a “white elephant” while Councillor Ciaran Cuffe said he would like to see the area refurbished as an outdoor swimming pool – we all know how well that went in Clontarf where the newly redeveloped pools are not open to the general public.

I believe that the councillors in question are not aware of all the facts that could make this facility great for Dublin.

Cardiff City in Wales with a population of 300,000 successfully runs such a facility.

The facts are:

Our elite whitewater athletes are being forced to train aboard, we’ve had great success in the Olympics in the past, but without this facility we are not competing on a level playing field.

There are over 3,000 registered kayakers in the Republic of Ireland who would use this facility rather getting the ferry to the UK or travel further abroad. –

The location in the city centre is a good location – it is easily accessible and there is plenty of parking in the IFSC –

A prominent location will help advertise a sport which is not soccer, GAA or rugby –

A sports facility like this will help bring life into the north docklands which is dead at the weekends when all the workers of the IFSC are off

There are many groups in Ireland who do great work introducing children from disadvantaged area to adventure sports, having this facility in Dublin city centre would be a great boost to this work

Dublin Fire brigade and others involved in water rescue would benefit from being able to train at a facility like this.

The council said it will fund from its own resources combined with grants, and tickets sales are to fund the ongoing maintenance and upkeep.

The center will generate revenue from tourists – being in the city center it is easily accessible.

I have started a petition (below) which I plan to present to Dublin’s North Inner City councillors to show the support for this facility.

The petition has been open for only 24 hours and already has close to 1,000 signatures. I am hoping that Broadsheet readers who would support the building of this facility would sign.

Sign here

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15 thoughts on “Canoe Dig It?

  1. George

    Anything would be better than the scaffolding that’s in there now including just removing it.

    If there’s a water polo pool proposed could that not also be used for swimming some of the time?

    1. ____

      Presume it’s supposed to be canoe polo but someone in the Irish Times offices changed it by mistake.

    1. Zaccone


      Better to use that space for much needed offices/apartment space, and put a white water training center (if one is needed) somewhere not right slap bang in the middle of the city center.

      1. Janet, I ate my avatar

        plus apartments without reliance on the joke of a transport system to reach ” town “

  2. Skeptik

    Why were lifting bridges put in if they’re just going to close off the waterway to boats? Could the docks be used as, well, docks?

    1. Liam

      the lifting bridges are over 100 years old, & Georges dock hasn’t been used for boats for over 50 years.

  3. A Person

    Yeah, lets spend 1000s a week on powering a minor leisure pursuit in the city centre, as opposed to building houses, even though we have loads of rivers in the country.

  4. Cormac O'Brien

    The funding is separate to the housing funding source, not saying it’s right to do so, but it is. I think more funding should be available to homeless but while those funds are allocated to sports and tourism then we should see public benefiting.

    If you built the facility out by the national aquatic center, somebody would argue that it’s not central, you can’t win!

    If it was a major sport such as GAA or Rugby receiving these funds, you’d argue that the big boys are getting all the fun. Let’s see a small sport grow.

  5. ____

    RE location – I’d imagine a finances has a lot to do with this.
    1. building it within an existing basin is probably a lot cheaper.
    2. They’ll be hoping to attract a lot of people casually doing rafting to generate income (people/families looking for something different, tourists, hens/stags, corporate stuff etc.) – such a convenient location will be a huge driver in that.

  6. Liam Deliverance

    Has anyone ran this by the seagulls out there, they rule that area with an iron wing, you don’t want to mess with these guys.

  7. Cú Chulainn

    Dublin City councillors and management are either incompetent or corrupt. If you want the facility.. don’t be moaning about their short sightedness.. just pay them, in cash of course, and be done with it..

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