OPW officials warned Minister there would be “a degree of opposition” to reopening of all gates at the Phoenix Park

On July 6, the OPW issued a press release talking excitedly about Dublin’s green lung and how an experiment to keep the side gates of the Phoenix Park closed would continue.

In that statement, they said: “With this in mind, reducing the volume of ‘through-traffic’ is critical and maintaining safe, quiet, open spaces for pedestrians and cyclists to enjoy is a key priority for us.”

A few days later, they made an about turn and decided to reopen all of the gates, except one that is being restored.

These records bring some clarity to why that decision was made.

A text message exchange between John McMahon, a senior official at the OPW, and the Private Secretary to Minister Patrick O’Donovan spells it out.

“As directed, the gates will reopen from tomorrow morning,” wrote the official. “As advised yesterday, there will be a degree of opposition to this.”

You can read the documents for yourself below: