Tuesday 15 May 2007

Dublin 4 but not 32 . . . in this location size matters

SIZE DOES matter in fashionable Ballsbridge, the exclusive heart of Dublin 4.

The area which includes the US embassy, the Lansdowne Road stadium and the RDS, not to mention countless houses worth €30m plus, is THE location in the country.

When property developer Sean Dunne bought both Jury's and the Berkeley Court hotels and outlined plans for a 32-storey skyscraper of apartments, no fewer than 14 residents associations went on the warpath.

It was the mother of all acquisitions in the heart of the gold-plated property belt, costing the developer €380m. But under the existing development plan the height will have to be restricted.

The residents said the proposed rezoning of substantial tracts of land - including the hotel sites between Pembroke Road and Shelbourne Road - was entirely unnecessary as Ballsbridge already had all the amenities appropriate to its character.

Yesterday, councillors agreed and adopted a motion which throws the Sean Dunne plan for an apartment skyscraper into serious doubt.

Legal challenges may ensure more council meetings - and more residents meetings. In the meantime, the plan for 632 apartments will be on hold.

Irish Independent

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