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temple of boom Owner of the Temple Bar pub thinks a new plan proposed for the city’s cultural quarter is “absolutely fantastic”

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Publican and owner of the Temple Bar Pub, Tom Cleary pictured outside the  pub in Temple Bar.Picture Credit:Frank McGrath

Publican and owner of the Temple Bar Pub, Tom Cleary pictured outside the pub in Temple Bar.Picture Credit:Frank McGrath

Publican and owner of the Temple Bar Pub, Tom Cleary pictured outside the pub in Temple Bar.Picture Credit:Frank McGrath

The owner of the Temple Bar pub has said he thinks a new plan proposed for the city’s cultural quarter is “absolutely fantastic”.

Tom Cleary was speaking about the preliminary plans drawn up by business group the Temple Bar Company (TBC) that would see pedestrian squares and loading bays, as well as footpaths, used for outdoor tables and chairs on 17 streets.

According to the plans, 820 seats are proposed for the footpaths, loading bays and the roadway on both sides of Fleet Street, which has low levels of vehicular traffic.

Parliament Street would see 548 diners accommodated if paths, loading bays and the roadway were used, with traffic reduced to one lane.

Essex Street East could seat 482, while the pedestrianised Meeting House Square and Temple Bar Square could hold 400 and 296 respectively.

The plans will be submitted shortly to Dublin City Council, as part of a programme that would also include food markets. Proposals for “medical/science-based mitigation measures” for the return of indoor dining would also be submitted to the council, the TBC has said.

“I think it’s fantastic,” Mr Cleary said. “I mean, the effort that we're putting into it this would make Temple Bar the number one destination for people in Dublin, for tourists and locals alike.

“We’re trying to up our game with better security, better street cleaning, everything. We’re trying to improve the restaurant offering, we're trying to improve the pubs and toilet facilities.

“People want to go out, they want to feel safe and they want to enjoy food and drink in a safe environment while adhering to the guidelines as set out by the Government,” he said.

"So, we’re trying to do our best (to accommodate that) and if it’s done properly, we can make it look a little bit like some of the very nice areas in Chelsea in London and in other cities in Europe.

The CEO of the Temple Bar Company, Martin Harte, said they had started looking at an outdoor plan “a couple of months ago as we knew the area was going to have to open at some point”.

"About three weeks ago we went to the city council and said we’re going to come up with a plan which we're going to submit to the council," Mr Harte said. "They said that was fine, as long as we met all the various regulations and so on.

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“We went away and engaged an architect. We said the first thing we need to do is to draw out the streets to see what was the maximum number you could accommodate (outdoors) in an area like Temple Bar. That was to help us understand or visualise what it might look like if everyone who could go out on the street actually went out on the street.

“From June 10 everyone has been told they can go outdoors and I’m not sure if people have given much thought as to what that might look like if every restaurant, café, theatre, bar and coffeeshop decided to trade outdoors for the next couple of months, he added.

“The city is going to turn itself inside out, literally, so we wanted to be in a position to try and understand what that would look like and manage it and come up with a plan.”

He added: “We are in the process of gathering reaction to the shape of the plan. We want to end up with a framework that we can submit us to the council and the fire authorities and they can say yay or nay.”

Dublin City Council said they were aware that a business stakeholder group "is preparing an overall plan for the Temple Bar area".

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