Dawson Street property plan gets the green light

Property group, Green Reit has won its planning battle with An Taisce over its plans to demolish a landmark building and erect a new six-storey office block on Dublin’s Dawson Street.

This follows a decision by An Bord Pleanála yesterday giving the plan the green light after An Taisce had lodged an appeal against the Dublin City Council decision to grant planning.

Last year, the property firm paid €23m for the office block that lies at the junction of Dawson Street and Molesworth Street.

The complex previously served as the headquarters of Royal and Sun Alliance. The building’s current tenants include Etihad and Centaur Fund Services.

The property is part of Green Reit’s €968m property portfolio comprising 24 properties that produce a rent roll of €55.7m.

In the plan, Green Reit is to demolish the 1970s five- storey building with a gross floor area of 5,010 sq m and replace it with a six-storey building with floor space more than twice the size at 12,756 sq m.

In its ruling, the board gave the go-ahead after determining that it “could be satisfactorily assimilated into the established streetscapes on Molesworth Street and Dawson Street without injury to the visual or other amenities of the area”.

The board made its ruling after studying a 26-page inspector’s report which concluded “the proposed demolition is justified and that the proposed new replacement building is acceptable in terms of scale, height, design and intensity of use”.

The inspector also found that the proposed building’s proposed combination of office use and retail use “have strong potential to contribute to the vitality and economic viability in the central business district”.

Arguing the case for the plan to get the go-ahead, consultants for Green Reit said the existing building “is no longer aligned with a modern working environment”.

They said “the low floor-to-ceiling height, lack of raised access floor has made the building undesirable for tenants and to be at the lower end of the office market in its current condition”.

Green Reit also said the development “will ensure a more efficient, sustainable and appropriate use of strategically located city centre lands”. In its appeal, An Taisce had argued that “there is no gain for the city in the planning application”.


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