PERMISSION FOR a new €160 million women's, children's and maternity hospital in Sandyford, south Dublin, has been refused by Dún Laoghaire Rathdown County Council.
The local authority rejected the application from the Beacon Medical Group due to a lack of sufficient infrastructure and foul water drainage in the area.
Pauline Cullen, a spokeswoman for the Beacon group, said the consortium was "very disappointed" that the 120-bed maternity hospital has not been approved.
"We were hopeful that all concerns had been addressed and that a positive outcome would be forthcoming," said Ms Cullen. "However, we are committed to working with Dún Laoghaire Rathdown County Council to ensure this much-needed facility goes ahead."
The Beacon Group intends to meet council planners to discuss how to make the plan work.
A new site is not being ruled out, although the preferred option is to co-locate the new facility next to the existing Beacon Hospital.
Ms Cullen said: "It doesn't make sense to move the hospital, but if we have to do so, we will. Having said that, it if doesn't go ahead in the intended site, it reduces the possibility of the hospital going ahead at all."
Council planners deemed the design "premature due to existing deficiencies in sewerage facilities to cater for the scale of the proposed development".
Such a development would be premature due to deficiencies in the road network, the planners added, and would require road improvements of adequate capacity.
Last February county manager Owen Keegan said that the local authority would reject planning permission for developments of larger than two houses due to a lack of adequate foul water services in the area.
The Irish Times