The results of a massive survey of Swords residents in relation to the new Ward River Valley Regional Park has found that the wilderness spaces are the most loved part of the park and people want them preserved.
Some 78% of those surveyed wanted the existing ‘landscape features’ protected, with 65% saying wildlife and nature should be a key aspect of the new park – the two highest categories in the adult survey.
Other key themes that have come out of the survey, that took place last year, include developing better sporting and play facilities, dog walking areas, walking and cycling routes, concerns about antisocial behaviour, and an improved maintenance regime for the park.
Another important element is the commitment to developing new connections through the park, in particular linking Knocksedan with the rest of Swords.
Cllr Ian Carey said:
“It is really interesting and encouraging to see the results of the survey on the new Ward River Valley Regional Park project.
“Clearly many, many people really cherish the park and, in particular, the incredible natural environment down there. It really is a wild sanctuary right in the centre of the town and that’s how people want to keep it.
“I couldn’t agree more with this and I hope now it will be central to the draft plan that is about to be unveiled.
“In addition I’m very glad to see the push for better sporting facilities as well as improved walking, cycling and running routes.
Overall, I think what has come forward from the survey sets the right tone for the development of the draft plan. We need to protect, improve and maintain the incredible nature we have while improving the amenities in the more developed part of the park.”