The former landfill site located on the Newry Road will not be developed into a public amenity such as playing fields for a number of years at least, say Louth County Council.
Despite a 20% reduction in the quantities of gaseous quantities extracted at the site over a five year period between 2014 and 2018, the Waste Management & Environment section of the local authority say the Newry Road site would not be suitable for a public space for several years but were unwilling to put a figure on how many that might be.
It has been suggested in the past that the location of the site might be suitable for an amenity such as playing fields but the council do not believe the site would be safe or suitable in the short term. They did not, however, rule out any future development.
In response to a question from Councillor Conor Keelan, the local authority said that while gas is still being extracted and monitored at the site any development work would interfere with on-site infrastructure such as gas wells, capping and capping liner.
‘Any construction would also have associated health and safety risks with possible uncontrolled gas release,’ the written response stated.
‘In the medium to longer term, any form of access for the general public would also result in a need for significant investment in securing infrastructure such as manhole covers, gas manifolds and vents. The whole proposal would then need to be approved by EPA, which is not guaranteed.’
In 2014, 201,796kg (31,777 stone) of gaseous quantities were extracted from the old Newry Road landfill. That number stood at 162,102kg (25,526 stone) for the 12 months to the end of 2018. There are no final figures available for 2019 as of yet.