The appeals board has granted planning permission for the project which includes a 98-bedroom hotel despite concerns on the part of local residents that it would be part of a continuing trend “to completely ‘alcoholise’ Camden Street”.
The board ruling represents a comprehensive planning victory for Wetherspoon as the decision omits a planning condition imposed by Dublin City Council seeking to curtail the size of the pub.
The City Council ruled that a 244sq m ‘dining area’ and courtyard with tables and chairs be omitted from the plan. However, this has been overturned on appeal.
Already, Wetherspoon operates five pubs here — four in Dublin and one in Cork. It is understood that the development will lead to the creation of 200 jobs.
Local resident and appellant Barry Chambers told Bord Pleanála that allowing another pub in the area, “not to mention the large-scale drinking establishment being proposed would be seriously detrimental to the residential amenity and character of the area”.
Mr Chambers was one of a number of residents to oppose the plan. In his appeal, he said: “Drink-fuelled, ever-increasing noise, nuisance, and anti- social behaviour — ranging from the benign to the very serious which goes hand- in-hand with the drinking culture — has already, regrettably, started to change the character of the area for the worse.”
Mr Chambers said that “the introduction of a super-pub selling cheap alcohol, into the melting pot, does not bear thinking.”
In response, Wetherspoon said that to imply that the proposal includes a super-pub “is disingenuous, misleading and clearly not the case”.
The company said that the proposal “is not intended as a late-night destination, with the latest expected opening hours to be at 12.30am at the weekends”.