Calls have been made for the former tourist information kiosk in Eyre Square to be converted to Garda use following dangerous anti-social behaviour.
There have been a number of highly publicised anti-social incidents in the city centre recently, the worst example of which came last week when a young woman was struck in the face with a firework in Eyre Square, sustaining serious injuries.
At a meeting of the city joint policing committee last week, Chief Superintendent Tom Curley suggested that one possibility was to close the square at night-time.
Senator Ollie Crowe, formerly a member of Galway City Council, said that closing off Eyre Square would not solve the problem.
“The people acting this way will simply move elsewhere and behave the same way. We cannot close the centre of our city and we must ensure it is safe for all.”
An “enhanced” Garda presence in the square is called for, he said, which could be achieved by converting the former tourism kiosk into a police substation.
“We also need to improve the area generally, by ensuring it is better maintained, increased lighting for safety and are calling on Galway City Council to appoint a park officer whose sole work would be to maintain and improve Eyre Square.”
While there has been growing pressure and calls for more Gardaí in highly visible roles o the street to deter anti-social behaviour, staffing levels have been a roadblock.
It has been repeatedly pointed out by members of An Garda Síochána and other public figures, that there are simply not enough Gardaí for the tasks being asked of them.