By Gordon Deegan
The Kilkenny Group, luxury goods and retailing business, the Kilkenny Group has warned that a planned €100m office development, backed by beef baron Larry Goodman, will result in “serious consequences” and job losses for its flagship store in Dublin.
The group operates a Kilkenny Shop on Dublin’s Nassau St, where it employs 88 people, with an additional 20 people employed for the busy Christmas period.
A plan to redevelop the adjacent Setanta Centre, owned by Mr Goodman and his son, into an eight-storey office block that could employ 1,600 people when complete is due to be ruled on this month.
The plan proposes the redevelopment of the Setanta Centre, which was built in the mid-1970s, and aims to leave the Kilkenny Shop, which is included on the site, untouched.
However, in a comprehensive objection requesting that Dublin City Council refuse planning permission for the project, consultants for the Kilkenny Group said that the proposals “will result in significant harmful impacts” on its store, “both during and following construction”.
The objection states that more than 1m shoppers visit the Kilkenny store, cafe, and restaurant each year.
It also claims that construction works for the office block project “will significantly impact the Kilkenny Shop financially, with our client raising genuine concerns regarding the viability of the store during the proposed development activities”.
Future Analytics Consulting, on behalf of the Kilkenny Group, said that “this impact upon the number of jobs supported by the Kilkenny Shop should not be underestimated”.
The planning proposal states that the existing buildings “have reached the end of their useful life and are no longer fit for purpose”.
According to KSN Construction Consultants, “the demolition of outdated office space and its replacement with good-quality office space will assist in attracting headquarter type uses”.
A report lodged with the plans further states that “the provision of high-quality extended floor plates, more in keeping with modern occupier requirements, will facilitate agglomeration economies in the area and, by extension, will make Dublin City more competitive when it comes to attracting international headquarters in the financial, technology, and business services sector”.