Thank you from
#Yes to Liveable Limerick
PUTTING PEOPLE AT THE HEART OF LIMERICK CITY’S REVIVAL
We’ve all heard the old adage ‘Build it and they will come’, but in Limerick last Sunday, it was a case of ‘Make space and it will be filled’. Best urban design practice puts people first above anything else in the making of great cities. And if you make room for people in a city, then they will come and use it. People and community are the heart and soul of a city, and making places for people and communities to connect is at the heart of a vibrant, inviting city.
Last Sunday #LiveableLimerick linked up with Street Feast, a national event in it’s ninth year, to bring a fun, family friendly, gathering to Catherine Street. The idea was simple, to close the street to traffic for three hours on a quiet Sunday afternoon and encourage people to come out, bring a picnic, their family, their pets, their friends, to meet and connect with their neighbours and community.
Temporary placemaking, such as this tests the key ambitions set out by #LiveableLimerick after a series Open Meetings this spring which include Desirability and Fun, Inclusion and a focus on People. As a low cost experiment, dependent mostly on good will and generosity, the #LiveableLimerick group and the people of Limerick can be proud of it’s success.
What does it take to make events like this happen? First of all it needs a driver, in this case it was a group of volunteers from #LiveableLimerick, but it could be any community group, residents or businesses. Then you need buy in from the people on the street. On Catherine Street The Commercial, Madam Mok and Canteen enthusiastically came on board, not only giving it a thumbs up but investing in the event itself.
For an event like this, insurance needs to be arrange and in order to organise a road closure one must liaise with Limerick City and County Council and An Garda Siochana. #LiveableLimerick would like to thank them for wholeheartly supporting the event. The media love to get behind a positive idea and Limericks print, broadcast and social media helped to promote the event so that people knew about it.
On the day, there was games for the kids organised by the scouts, music arranged by The Commercial Bar, Shannon arrived in their ice-cream van. The kids played on the streets, families arrive with picnic baskets, biscuits were handed out to dogs and all in all it was a relaxed, fun afternoon. We made new friends and felt at home hanging out on the street in the centre of Limerick. At 5o’clock, the volunteers swept in and cleaned up.
It did take energy and motivation to make this day happen. And #LiveableLimerick owe a death of gratitude to its wonderful energetic volunteers. But, it did happen and it will happen again. So shout out to #LiveableLimerick, join in and let us know what you would like to see happen in the city. You can be part of Limerick’s great revival too.
Ailish Drake Vice-Chair #LiveableLimerick