Safety Concerns See Number Of...


Safety Concerns See Number Of People Visiting Dublin City Centre Drop

Heather Lawrie
Heather Lawrie

03:17 4 Dec 2023

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There has been a significant drop in the amount of people visiting Dublin's city centre since the riots.

A new survey by Amárach Research, has found more than half of Dubliners are going into town less due to safety concerns.

It's not just affecting the Dubs though, 40 per cent of those nationally have either limited or entirely cut out visits.

82 per cent of those who've become to reluctant to visit, say they've have stopped shopping in the city and 62 per cent say they've stopped eating out.

Public Reaction

Since the 23rd November, Garda presence on the streets of the capital has increased.

But Paul Gallagher, co-owner of the Asics store on O'Connell Street that was looted that night, says that's not enough to protect businesses:

"I don't think that the government has a grasp, with all due respect to Minister, of how serious this problem is.
I was on national radio a year ago warning that Dublin City Centre could be in danger of the justice system is still soft touch.
She needs to wake up and smell the coffee because on her watch, it hasn't changed.
This didn't happen overnight. This has been bubbling for a long time."

Retailers in town saw a 90 per cent drop in 'Black Friday' sales compared to last year, due to the riots.

People walk past a damaged shop window on O'Connell Street in Dublin during clean-up following a riot, 24/11/2023. People walk past a damaged shop window on O'Connell Street in Dublin during clean-up following a riot, 24/11/2023. Image: ©

However, CEO of Dublin Town Richard Guiney believes things will soon return to normal.

"As last week progressed, we did see a return to the city.
I think, the experience has been very good.
I was certainly out and about myself over the weekend and just,
speaking to people on the street.
And there there was a very good atmosphere.
So I do hope that and I do expect that people will come back,
and certainly this weekend I think it would be terrific."

Moving Forward

Over half of people surveyed said they would feel better about going into Dublin's city centre if there was an increased Garda presence.

While three in five of the public agreed it would take a while before they felt safe in the capital again.

However, 26 per cent of people nationally think we forget the riots and continue to shop and enjoy Dublin's City Centre.

It will all come to a head tomorrow in the Dáil as politicians vote on whether or not they have confidence in Justice Minister Helen McEntee.





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