Bridgefoot Street Park finally gets finishing touches

Final touches are being made to Bridgefoot Street Park before its official opening next Wednesday, 4 May. 

The park, a major new public space for the area of the Liberties and city of Dublin, has been a ‘work in progress’ since March 2020. 

“This will be a great park to explore details. Lots of quirky features and a wild, organic feel to it,” tweeted Stephen Coyne, south central officer for Dublin City Council. 

“The park has an earthier feel to it, with reused materials and old paving elements from recycled projects used throughout the space,” Coyne said. 

The park is part of the project tagged #Greeningtheliberties, established in 2017 in an effort to add greenery and wildlife to the urban landscape of the area. 

“The design process began in 2017 to remedy the lack of greenery in the Liberties area. It’s an open park with no fencing so anyone can walk through it at any time. There is good connection to streets and to student accommodation and the Digital Hub,” Coyne said. 

The new park at Bridgefoot Street. Image via/Instagram @dublincitycouncilparks.  

The site is bounded by Bridgefoot Street on the east, Island Street on the north, Bonham Street on the north-west and Robert Emmet Street on the south. Its development was proposed to Dublin City Council in December 2016, followed by an impact statement by archaeologist Linzi Simpson in July 2017.  

After almost a two-year wait since construction began, it was announced on Twitter that the public park would open at the end of April – but even this late date got pushed back into May.  

“We had a lot of problems trying to open the park in the beginning and we’re almost eight months behind schedule, but this wait has given the plants and trees some good time to establish themselves. There hasn’t been any behaviour in the last eight months to upset the landscape,” Coyne said. 

Construction of the new park at Bridgefoot Street. Photos via/Twitter @bridgefootstprk.

Bridgefoot Street Park will consist of “hard and soft landscape areas, tree planting, furniture and lighting, soft landscape mounds and terraces, a community garden and multifunctional performance space, play space and play equipment,” according to the Dublin City Council website. 

Some 180 trees have been planted around the park since December 2020. 

Community locals expressed their excitement for the opening of the park following a social media post by ‘The Liberties Dublin’ on Instagram.  

“Can’t wait! I told my boy it would be open for his birthday May seventh. Hope my promise holds!,” said one user. 

“Guys this looks amazing and a welcome addition to Dublin 8,” another commented. 

Play area located in the new Bridgefoot Street Park. Image via/ Instagram @dublincitycouncilparks.

One user left a simple three-word comment beneath the post saying, “Richie Taplin Park.” 

Richard Taplin, who passed away last year, was a member of the committee that pushed for the park to be created, according to People Before Profit Cllr Tina MacVeigh. 

In an interview with Dublin Inquirer, MacVeigh said she’d “love to” have the park named after Richie Taplin. 

The park was designed by Dermot Foley Landscape Architect. The firm’s previous Dublin projects include the reimagining of St Audoen’s Park on High Street and the campus of the Catholic Institute for Deaf People in Cabra.  

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