Dublin Port Company has announced that it has acquired its final grant of planning permission for its groundbreaking Liffey-Tolka project. The project will create a new transformative public realm along a 1.4km dedicated cycle and pedestrian route, linking the River Liffey with the Tolka Estuary through Dublin Port lands on the east side of East Wall Road.

Cyclists and pedestrians will pass the substation, Dublin Port Company’s new interpretive space and venue for exhibitions, lectures and performances, which was launched last month. The substation offers visitors a view of the original 18th-century East Wall, uncovered during excavations at the site.

The Liffey-Tolka Project will connect to the Tolka Estuary Greenway, currently under construction. This section of greenway offers the public a never-before-seen view of Clontarf and Dublin Bay from the Port Estate, as part of DPC’s mission to create greater integration between the port and the city. 

Commitment to Sustainable Port City Development 

Separately, the company also announced that it has officially signed the Agenda 2030 by AIVP (International Association of Ports and Cities).

DPC chief executive Barry O’Connell was joined at Dublin Port’s substation by José Sanchez, director of the Agenda 2030 by AIVP, to mark the occasion.

This significant milestone highlights DPC’s dedication to integrating the port and the city through preservation of port heritage and identity, promotion of sustainable energy alternatives and protection of Dublin  bay’s biosphere.

AIVP’s 2030 Agenda is the world’s first initiative to adapt the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals for the specific context of port-city relations.

The document seeks to create a deeper connection between ports and cities and was produced jointly between AIVP members, which include local, regional and national authorities, private enterprises, ports, universities and architectural firms, at the Quebec Conference in 2018.

The Agenda 2030 by AIVP is a comprehensive framework that seeks to develop sustainable port-city integration strategies across ten key goals.

Each one of AIVP’s ten goals connect to the United Nations 2030 Agenda – which Ireland is signatory of – and to the holistic approach needed to reconnect ports with their respective cities along sustainable lines. The agenda sets down 10 goals for sustainable port city development.

10 key goals

  1. Climate change adaptation
  2. Energy transition and circular economy
  3. Sustainable mobility
  4. Renewed governance
  5. Investing in the human capital
  6. Port culture and identity
  7. Quality food for all
  8. Port City Interface
  9. Health and life quality
  10. Protecting biodiversity

By signing the Agenda, DPC joins an international community of port cities in its support for each of these goals. The Agenda was signed in DPC’s newly refurbished substation, a symbol of port culture and identity which allows the public to view the original 18th century sea wall which gives the East Wall its name.

DPC is engaged in several initiatives to preserve port culture and integrate the port and the city. The Liffey-Tolka project will integrate the port with the city through 6.3 kilometres of pedestrian paths and cycleways, allowing parts of the port estate to be accessible to the public like never before.

DPC has also expressed its commitment to protecting the biodiversity of Dublin bay, which is one of only two UNESCO biosphere reserves on the island of Ireland. It continues to support projects from Birdwatch Ireland and the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group to monitor the variety of species within the biosphere.

Barry O’Connell, chief executive, Dublin Port Company, said: "We are proud to sign the AIVP Agenda 2030 and join the global effort to create sustainable port cities.

Port culture and port-city integration

"Dublin Port Company is committed to pushing forward on the ten key goals of the agenda and is currently making strides in the realms of port culture and port-city integration with our newly refurbished substation venue and comprehensive Liffey-Tolka project, which lets the public in to 6.3km of pedestrian and cycle ways around the port.”

“Any port should be a good neighbour to its city, and it is heartening to see this agreement mark an international consensus in this regard."

José Sanchez, director of Agenda 2030 by AIVP, said: "Dublin Port Company's leadership in embracing sustainable practices sets a remarkable example for port cities worldwide. By signing the AIVP’s Agenda 2030, they reaffirm their dedication to making port cities more resilient, vibrant and environmentally responsible.

“Dublin Port Company's progressive steps towards sustainable port-city relations are a testament to their dedication to the long-term well-being of their community and the planet. Their unwavering commitment to the Agenda 2030 by AIVP is sure to inspire positive change in the global port city community.”