Construction work is underway on the latest city centre hotel, with the Dean Galway set to open in late 2020 on the site of the former Shannon Dry Cleaners in Bohermore.
The 110-bedroom hotel, bar and restaurant will be a sister hotel to The Dean Hotel on Harcourt Street in Dublin and will have a similar style in terms of “design, aesthetic and offering”.
“Customers can expect a great food and drink offering, and a focus on all the important things that make a great hotel,” remarked the Head of Marketing at the Press Up Entertainment Group, Laura Arnold.
The project will take approximately 20 months to complete and will cost over €10 million.
Once complete it will have approximately 100 full and part-time staff, and will require 60 full-time construction jobs over the course of the build.
The Dublin-based hospitality group opened The Devlin hotel in Dublin last November.
The Press Up Group, which is headed by property developer Paddy McKillen Junior, purchased the former Shannon Dry Cleaners and a number of adjoining properties for a reported €4.5 million.
As one of the largest hospitality groups in the country, it operates a portfolio of 34 hotels, bars, restaurants and nightclubs, including the Clarence Hotel (which is co-owned by Bono and The Edge), the Wowburger and Wagamama franchises, Captain Americas and the art deco Stella Cinema in Rathmines.
Planning permission was originally granted to Salthill-based developer Georgina O’Mahony of Highgate Properties, who then owned 84 and 86 Bohermore, while consent was given by Shannon Dry Cleaners include 80 Prospect Hill and 82 Bohermore in the plans. The dry cleaners was destroyed in a fire in 2016.
The plans include the conversion of the old Galway-Clifden railway tunnel under the site to a feature lounge.
Accounts filed by Orsen Ltd with the Companies Registration Office show pre-tax profits at Press Up increased 14-fold to €1.86m in 2017 and revenues increased by 32%, going from €43.9m to €57.88m.
Cycle lane will be a ‘disaster’
A business representative group has labelled the planned temporary cycle lane along the Promenade as a ‘disaster’ for Salthill that will cause ‘mayhem”.
Groups representing the cycling community have, meanwhile, called for residents, school and sport communities, businesses and visitors to lend their support for the project.
The Village Salthill, which represents businesses in the area, said it welcomed the public consultation process that was initiated by management of Galway City Council last week. But it is opposed to the temporary cycle lane.
“We have maintained right from the outset that this temporary arrangement would be a disaster for Salthill – removing a large amount of parking and driving traffic into and through residential areas in the height of the tourist season.
“The notion of having a properly constructed cycleway in Salthill has never been opposed by the Village group – however we are concerned that any ill thought-out and hastily planned solution will lead to chaos, bad feeling and seriously effect a number of businesses who rely on nearby parking to facilitate their customers,” a spokesperson said.
The Village Salthill said it would engage all city councillors to reinforce its members’ view about the “mayhem that would ensue should this proposal go ahead”.
“We will be consulting with, not only, the residents groups who are directly affected but also the areas that will feel the ‘concertina effect’ of scrambling for parking spaces. We would encourage everybody to have their say on this issue,” a spokesperson said.
The public consultation for the plan to implement a temporary cycle lane along the Prom from March-September of this year is ongoing. Submissions can be made up until 4pm on Friday, January 28.
In a joint statement, Galway Cycling Campaign and Galway Urban Greenway Alliance said they favour option two as outlined by the Council, which retains two-way vehicular access along the Prom.
“We need more blue badge parking, and the parking for people with disabilities at Ladies Beach needs to be on the Prom side of the road for safe and direct access to the beach. There also needs to be more pedestrian crossings along the route,” said Kevin Jennings of Galway Cycling Campaign.
Michelle Smyth of Galway Urban Greenway Alliance said that parking for older people needs to be provided.
“We are again calling for age friendly parking along the seafront in the Seapoint car park. We’ve heard that older people want to be able to sit in their cars and enjoy the stunning views of Galway Bay, and these courtesy parking spots would enable them to do so. It’s very simple to allocate a few spots for older people.”
The groups argue that the 3km cycleway will be an important part of safe routes to primary and secondary schools in Salthill and the city centre, as well as to shops, cafés and restaurants, beaches, leisure facilities and other local attractions.
Mr Jennings added: “It’s important to remember that this cycleway isn’t for people like me – male, middle-aged, able-bodied, confident cycling in traffic. It’s for people you don’t see cycling right now – children, teenagers, women, people with disabilities. It’s for people who would like to cycle to school or shops or work but don’t, because they don’t feel safe sharing the busy road with cars, buses and trucks.”
Submissions can be made in writing to Patrick Greene, Director of Services, Galway City Council, City Hall, College Road Galway or by email to email@example.com
Galway City Gardaí in double drugs swoop
TWO youths arrested in relation to the latest drugs and cash haul in the east side of the city last week have been released from custody with a file being prepared for forwarding to the DPP – the Galway City Tribune has learned that they are students residing in the Glasan complex on the Ballybane Road
Members of the Galway Garda Divisional Drugs Unit seized a total of €85,000 worth of drugs and cash after searching the accommodation under warrant – a third student is also understood to have been questioned by Gardaí on the evening of the arrest.
Cocaine made up the biggest part of the haul – €53,475 – while €25,000 in cash was also seized in the operation which took place shortly after 8pm on Tuesday last.
A further €4,200 worth of MMDA (ecstasy or molly) was also seized as well as €2,900 worth of cannabis herb – all of the drugs have been sent to Dublin for forensic and laboratory analysis.
Detective Superintendent Shane Cummins told the Galway City Tribune that the latest find was a ‘timely reminder’ of the availability and supply of illegal drugs among members of the student population in Galway city.
“These are people who would not have been previously involved in criminality but who now find themselves caught up in a very serious situation in relation to the procurement, sale and supply of illegal drugs.
“We are strongly advising students – and indeed all young people – not to get caught up in this network of illegal drugs usage, sale and supply. Young people can be sucked into a very dangerous world involving serious criminals.
“They can also end up themselves with a criminal record which can have major implications for their future careers. Stay clear of any such activity is our strong advice,” said Det. Supt. Cummins.
Last November, several Garda and Customs units, targeted houses in the Castle Park and Radharc na Gréine estates, seizing cash and drugs as well as freezing a bank account.
At the time, Garda sources said that the total value of seizures and the bank freezes – as well as previous drugs seizures in the east side of the city – was in the region of €200,000. A 191 Audi car worth close to €50,000 was also seized in the Limerick in relation to the Galway finds.
Last week’s seizures at the Glasan Student Village on the Ballybane Road are part of Operation Tara which was launched as part of the Garda anti-drugs strategy by Commissioner Drew Harris last July.
The aim of the strategy is to ‘dismantle and prosecute drugs trafficking networks at all levels –– international,national and local – involved in the importation, distribution, cultivation, production, local sale and supply of illegal drugs.
Roundabout work will trigger traffic chaos
WORK on the upgrading of the Martin Roundabout – adjacent to Galway Clinic – is to begin this week, the City Council have confirmed.
The project – due to start this morning, Monday, January 24 – will convert the existing roundabout into a four-armed signal-controlled junction and is scheduled for completion before the end of July.
Cycle lanes, bus priority measures, footpaths, a series of pedestrian crossings and landscaping will also be part of the estimated €5.5 million project.
A major traffic management plan for the area will be in place while the job is in progress with, according to the City Council, delays to traffic flows anticipated.
The City Council have said that traffic disruption will be ‘minimised as much as possible’ during the course of the works to be carried out by the Fox Building and Engineering company, which is headquartered in Omagh, Tyrone.
The Martin Roundabout is at the intersection of the R446 road between Oranmore and the Coolagh Roundabout; the Old Dublin Road; and the Link Road to the Galway Clinic.
Local councillor Terry O’Flaherty, told the Galway City Tribune, that the upgrade of the junction was most welcome news for local residents, pedestrians, cyclists and motorists.
“This really was a nightmare junction for all users and its upgrade is long overdue – it should make it a far safer place for pedestrians and for the staff and patients of Galway Clinic,” she said.
Another local councillor, Alan Cheevers, said that the footpath facilities alone for the people of the Roscam/Doughiska area would be a great advance.
“This is a badly needed project for this area. What I would caution though is that we learn from the mistakes that were made with the Kirwan Junction upgrade – we need to get this one right from the start,” said Cllr. Cheevers.