Sunday 29 November 2009

Council rounds on Dunne

Developer Sean Dunne's plans for a €300m development on the former Jurys hotels sites he owns in Ballsbridge, Dublin 4, have hit a stumbling block. Dublin City Council believes that the location of the hotel block would result "in serious overshadowing of the open space, thus reducing it to a cold and unpleasant place".

It has also expressed concern at the number of single-aspect units in the plan, some of which face north, and the quality of lighting and balconies within part of the proposed complex.

It is concerned, too, about "the level of privacy of some windows which are close or beside neighbouring balconies".

The council also raised questions about the low level of sunlight in some of the proposed open spaces and about overshadowing of properties to the northeast and northwest of the proposed scheme.

More details have also been sought on plans for social and affordable housing and Dunne has been asked to allow better public access through the site. "There is also concern that the proposed route/arcade through from Lansdowne Road to the Vets site is ill-defined and of poor quality," the council wrote.

Dunne has been asked to justify the need for a 10-year planning permission and to provide details of "mitigation measures to limit the impact of the building works over such an extended period". The effects of wind on the proposed scheme also needed further analysis, the council said.

Dunne will now be able to submit revised designs to address the council's concerns.

Contrary to reports elsewhere the scheme has not been refused permission. Instead, Dunne's Mountbrook Homes has been asked to submit further information on the proposal.

Dunne bought the former Jurys Ballsbridge and Berkeley Court hotels for €380m. He said 450 full-time jobs would be created if the complex – which would also include shops, medical facilities, the hotel and restaurants and bars – was given the go-ahead.

Billionaire businessman Dermot Desmond dubbed the design of the buildings proposed for the site "bland, uninteresting, typical of many nondescript and uninteresting buildings that lie unused and unlikely to be used throughout the city of Dublin".

Developer Myles O'Malley's Shelbourne House Partnership meanwhile expressed its "disappointment" with the overall scheme and objected to "the poor design, which seems to have been put together in a hurried manner".

Sunday Tribune

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