Costello appointed Spokesperson on Urban Regeneration

I am delighted to accept the position of spokesperson on Urban Regeneration for the Labour Party.

Ireland has changed dramatically over the last fifty years from a largely rural to a largely urban society.  The changes were most pronounced in recent decades.   Urban planning has not kept pace with urban development.  Too often developments are market driven not people centred. 

The starkest example of imbalanced urban development is in my own Constituency of Dublin Central.  Thirty years ago in 1986, the Urban Renewal legislation was passed and the Custom House Docks Development Authority was initiated.  This was followed in 1997 by the Dublin Docklands Development Authority.  Yet thirty years later affluence and poverty co-exist side by side in the Docklands area of the Inner City.

The richest area of the country contains some of the most disadvantaged communities and in recent months the deprivation and drugs have spilled over into the most savage series of gangland killings the country has ever experienced.

Ireland needs a coherent policy of urban development and regeneration which will put people first and ensure a community-based social and economic balance.

I look forward to developing such a policy.

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