An Bord Pleanála has given the go-ahead to Patrick Crean’s Marlet Group for contentious "fast track" plans to build more than 500 apartments in Howth, Co Dublin.
The appeals board has given the plan the go-ahead in spite of widespread local opposition where over 80 objections were lodged against the proposal.
The proposal includes 512 mainly one- and two-bed apartments in blocks totalling eight storeys in height.
The application is the fourth attempt to redevelop the derelict former Techrete factory site near the village’s Dart station.
The decision now gives the Marlet Group planning permission to construct 689 apartments in Howth as the decision follows the company securing planning permission last month from the appeals board to demolish the Bailey Court Hotel in Howth and replace it with 177 apartments.
In giving the ‘Techrete’ plan the go-ahead, the appeals board found that the proposed development would respect and enhance the historic and architectural character of the area and would be acceptable in terms of urban design, height and quantum of development.
The appeals board also found that the proposal would not seriously injure the amenities of the area or of property in the vicinity, would not damage the natural heritage of the area and would support the commercial role of Howth’s town centre.
The appeals board acknowledged that the plan could materially contravene the allocation of 498 homes to Howth.
However, the appeals board found that the plan would be justified having regard to the Government’s policy to ramp up delivery of housing from its current undersupply.
The board also cited other national policies which support denser residential development consisting of apartments on public transport corridors within the built-up area of Dublin City and its suburbs.
The Howth Sutton Community Council lodged a comprehensive objection against the plan.
It told the appeals board that the proposal represents an unacceptable form of development and should be refused.
Former TD, Tommy Broughan also objected to the plan. He told the appeals board that the increased height and density compared to earlier plans for the site and the certain traffic gridlock are all concerns of local people opposed to the plan.