AN Bord Pleanála has granted planning permission for a company controlled by developer Liam Carroll to complete the building of the proposed Anglo Irish Bank headquarters in Dublin’s docklands.
The controversial eight storey skeleton building had come to symbolise the failed development of the docklands after work halted on its construction in 2008.
Originally, Anglo provided the funding for the development to Mr Carroll’s company, North Quay Investments, and was to rent part of the development as its new headquarters. Whether the development will now go ahead will be based on a commercial decision by NAMA, which has taken over the loans associated with the development.
In 2007, as part of a highly controversial confidential deal, the Dublin Docklands Development Authority fast-tracked planning permission to Mr Carroll for the development as part of a land swap.
The permission was for an eight storey office development and was outside the authority’s own planning guidelines for density in the area.
The confidential agreement later caused the High Court to quash the planning permission when developer Sean Dunne took a case opposing the development.
A new application was made to retain the building in its unfinished state, and permission for all other works, including facades to be finished. Permission has now been granted to finish the building, although Mr Dunne could seek a judicial review.
Local East Wall resident and appellant in the An Bord Pleanála case Marie O’Reilly criticised the “lack of clarity in the decision.”
She added: “The decision says that a management plan is to be agreed with the planning authority and the developer, which leaves out the local residents.”