A new €22m white-water rafting facility beside the IFSC has been given the go ahead by city councillors.

Dublin Fire Brigade had asked councillors to support the proposal because it will include a water rescue training facility.

Assistant Chief Fire Officer Greg O'Dwyer told the monthly meeting of councillors that the George's Dock development would allow training in rescue during flooding, from weirs and from submerged cars.

At present, courses in Ireland cost up to €20,000 with the cost doubling when officers have to go Britain.

He said it would also be used for training gardaí and other members of the emergency services.

Area manager Derek Kelly said the cost of the project had increased from €12m to €22m because of additional elements considered necessary, such as a water treatment plant and the construction of two new buildings instead of refurbishing the former Dublin Docklands Development Authority building.

The meeting also heard that funding would be raised from grants of €13m, €4.9m from dockland development levies and €4m from council reserves.

However, Mr Kelly said the facility, which is predicted to attract at least 36,000 visitors a year, will start to turn a profit from the second year onwards.

He said the white-water rafting would be hired out at a cost of €50 a head and this income would allow use by the local community.

A similar facility in Cardiff attracts 85,000 visitors a year, said Mr Kelly.

Cllr Christy Burke, who is chair of the Central Area Committee, said there will be local jobs in the construction and there will also be an opportunity for local young people to train as instructors.

The proposal was passed by 37 votes in favour to 19 against.