The developers of the beleaguered €80m Cork event centre hope to contact the woman who lodged a last-minute appeal with An Bórd Pleanála to see if her concerns can be addressed. The news emerged as the Minister now overseeing the near €40m in state-aid for the project confirmed that talks about the financing are ongoing.
The Irish Examiner revealed in September how after months of negotiations, a new process to “provide funding certainty” for the 6,000-capacity venue had been agreed. It will see the Department of Local Government assume oversight for all the state funding to be channeled directly to the city council over a number of years to help deliver the venue.
Speaking in Cork today, the Minister for Local Government, Eoghan Murphy, said he is in talks with the Finance Minister on the funding and matters have yet to be finalised. He said:
When we finalise things with the Minister for Finance, we will be able to speak more publicly about that
The enlarged venue was granted planning by Cork City Council in early October, with 48-conditions. The deadline for appeals to An Bórd Pleanála was Wednesday. Two appeals were lodged just before the deadline - one from the developers, BAM, in relation to development contributions, and one third party appeal.
Planning law allows applicants to appeal a condition linked to development contributions without jeopardising the grant of planning. It means building work can start while the appeal is considered.
However the third party appeal triggers a consideration process which the planning appeals board aims to conclude within 18-weeks.
Tanaiste Simon Coveney, who described the event centre as his “political baby”, told Neil Prendeville on RedFM that he understands BAM plans to contact the woman behind the appeal to see if they can address her concerns about the heritage and archaeology of the site.