Claire Gallagher [email protected]
A DERELICT complex, once used by homeless people who were sleeping rough, has gone on the market and the members of Ennis Town Council believe the local authority should buy it.
At last evening’s meeting of the council, Cllr Brian Meaney (FF) suggested that the council request permission from the Government to raise the loan necessary to purchase the Fairways which has gone on the market for €75,000.
The derelict building, which was described by Cllr Tommy Brennan as “an awful eye sore”, is situated on the entrance to the town from the Galway side, across from the Fairgreen (Active Ennis Tim Smyth Park).
Dereliction orders have previously been served on the building, according to Town Manager Ger Dollard, who agreed to “investigate with a full view to a solution”.
Cllr Meaney maintained that the purchase prices tag of €75,000 would be more cost affective to forcing a dereliction order to its conclusion, which is a lengthy and costly legal process.
“It is a landmark site that I believe will increase in value,” he said.
The purchase of the building should “well be within the ability of the council,” the councillor argued.
“What we are dealing with here is a legacy issue from another planning era.
“You would never get planning permission for that now.
“I think this is an opportunity where we can begin the process again.
“Maybe improve it or maybe demolish it and use the site for something more appropriate.”
Cllr Mary Howard (FG) seconded Cllr Meaney’s motion stating that from a Tidy Town’s perspective there is nothing that can be done with the building currently.
Ennis Town Clerk Leonard Cleary told the meeting that the building was not suited to the housing needs of Ennis Town Council clients as there are “significant building management issues.”
“If a property such as this were to be developed for social housing it may need the management oversight of an organisation such as a voluntary housing body,” he said.
“An initial viewing of the building would indicate there would be considerable works required.”
The Town Clerk said that such issues as this would have to be assessed before seeking permission for a loan.