AN BORD Pleanála has given the go-ahead to a controversial development planned for Dún Laoghaire golf club.
A total of 856 residential units – a mixture of apartments and houses – an office building, a supermarket and shop units will now be built by Cosgrave Developments.
The development will include an eight-acre park with a lake.
The original planning permission, which was granted by Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown Council last year, received 16 objections from interested parties, including one from the Combined Residents to Save Open Space (CRSOS), which represents 43 residents’ associations.
The decision by An Bord Pleanála ends a marathon planning saga that began when Cosgrave Developments bought the 78-acre Dún Laoghaire golf club site in 2002 from its members for €20 million plus a 27-hole course at Ballyman Glen near Enniskerry, which opened last year.
The land in question was controversially rezoned in 2004 after the then minister for the environment, Martin Cullen, used his powers under the 2000 Planning Act to issue a statutory directive to the council to rezone more land in the area to provide extra housing.
An Bord Pleanála granted planning permission subject to 58 conditions, none of which substantially changed the development.
It said the proposals were in keeping with the “proper planning and sustainable development” of the area, and would be acceptable in terms of traffic volumes.
The developers have been ordered to levy charges against residents to provide a bus service that will link the development with Dún Laoghaire Dart station.
It is also proposed to upgrade the Upper Glenageary Road and the Kill Avenue to make way for the increased volume of traffic.
Cosgrave Developments spokesman Peter Cosgrave said they were “absolutely delighted and thrilled” by the decision, and they already had 600 inquiries from the public about it.
“There is huge pent-up demand and a huge shortage of houses and apartments in the area for new housing. We have had more inquiries about this than any site we’ve ever been involved with over the last 30 years.”
However, CRSOS chairwoman and local Green Party councillor Gene Feighney said the decision had left local residents “heartbroken”.
She accused An Bord Pleanála of ignoring the concerns of residents about the size of the project.
“This is the equivalent of parachuting the people of Fermoy into Dún Laoghaire . . . An Bord Pleanála has not referred, to let alone addressed, a few basic facts in relation to this development. Hundreds of submissions have been made and they have all been ignored.
“The social and affordable development aspect is clustered in a high-rise in one area of the development; there is not enough open space; the density is too high; and the transport infrastructure is not in place to cope with the volumes of traffic.”
Cosgrave Developments said the northern part of the course – 40 acres – would be developed at a later stage. In total, the development will have about 1,700 residential units. It is anticipated that the first phase will take at least five years to complete.
Dún Laoghaire golf club relocated to its new course at Ballyman Glen last August.