Ciaran Murray of Ballymun Regeneration retires a Hero

The piece here was reproduced in the Northside People in November 09. If you look at the end of webcast of the city Council Meeting of 5th July, 2010 you can follow the displays of real affection for the man by everyone. He had magnificent vision and saw IKEA, the AXIS Arts Centre, Metro North, the new Main street, neighbourhood centres,Gateways, Community Forums, Constant renewal and revision and a magnificent Shopping Center and central living quarter still in gestation due to Treasury Holdings.

I wish him a long and fulfilling retirement. He is too valuable to retire and I hope someone hires him to direct a major project. THANKS CIARAN

Thursday, 26 November 2009
THE man who has spearheaded the regeneration of Ballymun for more
than a decade is to quit his post Northside People can reveal.
Ciaran Murray revealed his intention to step down as managing director of Ballymun Regeneration Limited (BRL) last week.
Mr Murray is opting for the Government’s incentivised Early Retirement
Scheme, which is aimed at reducing the pay bill for public sector workers, which is running at e18 billion a year.
Mr Murray who has been at the helm of Europe’s largest regeneration scheme for the past 12 years has given his notice to the city manager.
He expects to retire next autumn, although his departure might be brought forward depending on the December budget.
The retirement scheme allows those over 50-years-of-age to retire
immediately on a pension without suffering any penalty for the years of
service they will miss.
Those who opt for the scheme will receive only 10 per cent of their lump sum immediately with the balance paid when they reach the normal retirement age of 60 or 65 years.
In a statement Ciaran Murray thanked the local community for its support and patience throughout the project.
“The last 12 years, working as managing director of BRL provided me with a wonderful and unique opportunity to work with the community in Ballymun,” he stated.
“It isn’t easy to live and bring up families for more than a decade with
construction work going on all around and I thank everyone in Ballymun for their support and their ongoing contribution to the regeneration.”
Ciaran Murray is widely respected and has been praised for his efforts to
dispel the stigma attached to the ‘mun’ which was once one of the country’s most notorious blackspots of unemployment and social deprivation.
As managing director, Mr Murray also worked tirelessly to promote the area and to entice major companies to set up in Ballymun.
The opening of IKEA’s landmark store in the July was one of his
hobbyhorses, which he had pursued since 1998 when he first pitched the idea to the Swedish company’s headquarters.
“Ballymun has a vibrant community and I know that people will continue to build on what they have already achieved through their hard work and commitment since work first began on the regeneration of the area in 1997,” said Mr Murray.
“I have worked together with a wonderful team and board of active,
dedicated people who give all their energy and commitment to achieving this regeneration project to the highest possible standards.
“We have achieved a lot and I wish them well over the next few years.”
As part of the regeneration scheme, 1,600 families have moved to new homes from the notorious tower blocks. The remaining 600 families are expected to move into their new homes within the next four years.
“I am confident that funding will continue to be made available for the
remaining new homes,” Mr Murray stated.
“The more than 30 national awards that Ballymun has won in recent years for its enhanced environment show more than anything that people in Ballymun are determined to make the best of their new town.
“The new Main Street, with planned new Town Centre, the shops, the
amenities like the Axis Arts Centre and the Leisure Centre, the parks,
playing fields, and Futsal Arena, the hotels and other new businesses
including IKEA and the potential Metro North will bring, along with the
available development land on the M50, all point to a bright future for
Ballymun.”
Meanwhile, local councillors expressed their regret in relation to Mr
Murray’s departure.
“Ciaran has been at the centrepoint of the redevelopment of Ballymun,” Cllr Bill Tormey (FG) told Northside People.
“He has shown great imagination, direction and purpose. He was also
responsible for changing the policy in BRL in an effort to improve
consultation with the local community.
“He recognised the difficulties people in the area faced on a daily basis
and he did everything he could to promote major development in Ballymun.”
Originally from Drumree, Co Meath, Mr Murray joined Dublin County Council in 1971 where he worked in its housing department at Parnell Square. He progressed up the ranks until the reorganisation of the Dublin local authorities in 1991 when he opted to be part of the new South Dublin County Council.
He headed up its development department and was simultaneously Chief
Executive of South Dublin Enterprise Board and European Officer.
In 1995 he moved to Dublin City Council as Head of Engineering and was
there for two years before moving to BRL as Managing Director.