Businesses divided over Sandymount Green pedestrianisation but families firmly in favour

Northeastern side of Sandymount Green will be car free every weekend, starting from today

The northeastern side of Sandymount Green in Dublin will be pedestrianised every Friday, Saturday and Sunday between this weekend and September 29th under a Dublin City Council initiative. It was first pedestrianised during Covid-19 in 2021 to help restaurants and pubs place seating outside their premises.

However, local business owners are divided over the latest pedestrianisation, which also requires cyclists and scooter users to dismount.

“I think people who drive cars are demonised so much now, public transport is just not reliable enough,” said Laura Hyland, whose family own Eclipse Boutique.

“It’s a lovely idea in theory. I think in the summertime, especially in the green, Sandymount village has a lovely community vibe to it, but I do think it’s necessary that traffic can get through the village,” she continues.


“We’re open seven days a week and, to encourage footfall, you’ve got to give people the option to drive because we get customers coming from not just the immediate area. I get people coming over from Clontarf, Raheny, Killiney, Stillorgan, Rathgar, so we really need access to the village with traffic.”

The owner of Strand Fare coffee shop, Sarah Jane Mullarney, said the initiative is having a negative impact on her business as people are not able to park in the village and shop.

“When the sun is shining, Sandymount is a fantastic destination place to come and unfortunately when they closed the green, there could be up to ten spaces gone. But it’s not just spaces, it’s the turnover of those spaces.”

She said it could be particularly bad on Friday because of deliveries.

es. “For anybody in Sandymount, the main trade is Saturday and Sunday, particularly when the sun is shining. So, the best of a bad result for us was that it only closed at the weekend.”

Others are more upbeat,such as Patsy O’Keeffe of O’Keeffe Estates.

“I think it’s a real positive, great for the kids. It’s very social, they’re going to do some entertainment in the park now so if you’ve got small kids, it’s lovely. It’s a great idea.”

Joanne Ramtano, who lives in Sandymount, describes it as a positive initiative from the council. As a mother, she sees it as a great thing for children and families.

Anne Houlihan, who has lived in Sandymount for 20 years, agrees. “We love it. It brings another dimension to life at the village,” she said.

“You can eat outside looking at the green or spontaneously meet a friend. It’s inclusive of people with disabilities and children. “It’s very positive. I’ve never seen any antisocial behaviour and the tourists love it,” she said.

James Geoghegan, a Fine Gael councillor, said it was “fantastic” and “universally liked” by those living in the area, despite initial concerns.

“Dublin City Council worked hard to engage with the locals. It brings more people into the village. All I hear is positivity. It’s adding animation to the green,” he said.