Thursday, 17 January 2008

Extension for AIB's Bankcentre appealed

A couple living on Serpentine Avenue in Ballsbridge, Dublin 4 has appealed a planned extension of AIB's Bankcentre to An Bord Pleanála saying it represents "poor planning".

Dr Noel O'Connor and Mrs Elaine O'Connor, who live across the road from the Bankcentre, say the proposed extension of the centre to 88,000sq m (947,223sq ft) from its current size of 69,900sq m (752,400sq ft) would constitute overdevelopment of the site.

They say that the first extension of the Bankcentre - from 33,000sq m (355,210sq ft) to 69,900sq m (752,400sq ft) which was granted planning permission in 2004 - saw "virtually all green areas" built upon and they had to endure "three years of site clearance, excavation and construction.

"In some instances neighbours have sold and moved on."

They claim that "at no point since 2003 has the AIB management team responsible for this development crossed the road to respond to the daily impacts" of the development.

AIB sold most of the Bankcentre site for €378 million in 2004 to a consortium including Mountbrook Homes, Hibernian, AIB and the Serpentine Consortium.

The O'Connors are also concerned about the additional traffic that would be generated as a result of the proposed development which it is estimated would employ an extra 1,500 staff. The bank already has around 6,000 staff many of whom use the access point on Serpentine Avenue. They say the main entrance of the proposed extension is on the "narrowest part of Serpentine Avenue" and is less than 30 metres from the rail crossing,

Another issue is the scale of the development which they say is at variance with the tree-lined Victorian and Edwardian residential avenue.

The Irish Times

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