Planning board to concede in challenge over 102 Dún Laoghaire apartments

Judicial review challenge was taken against plans to develop apartments on lands at St Michael’s Hospital

An Bord Pleanála will concede in a legal challenge against its permission for 102 build-to-rent apartments in Dún Laoghaire, the High Court has heard.

Mr Justice David Holland was told on Monday that the planning board has indicated in correspondence between the parties that it will consent to an order quashing its fast-track approval for the strategic housing development (SHD) on lands at St Michael’s Hospital, Crofton Road.

Eamon Galligan SC, for the developer, and notice party to the proceedings Noel Smyth’s Fitzwilliam DL Limited, said the matter required a short adjournment for the parties to discuss whether or not the planning application would be remitted for fresh consideration by An Bord Pleanála.

The board’s decision was challenged by Crofton Buildings Management, manager of the Harbour View apartment development next to the proposed development site, and Monkstown resident Stephanie Bourke, of Carrickbrennan Road, Monkstown. Their counsel, Stephen Dodd SC, said they were consenting to the matter being put back.


Mr Justice Holland adjourned the case for two weeks.

The judicial review challenge concerned the board’s decision in April 2021 to approve Fitzwilliams’s proposed development, which involved the demolition of a vacant two-story building and construction of 102 apartments and two retail units, private amenity space and a cafe.

Crofton Buildings Management and Ms Bourke claimed the board had acted beyond its powers and/or in breach of certain requirements of section 9.6 of the 2016 Act on SHDs, which allows permission to be granted for a development even if it materially contravenes a local development or area plan.

It was also claimed that Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council found the proposed development was in material contravention of the county development plan for various reasons, including its height.

The proposed apartment block, at 51.475m high, would be higher than the tower of the county hall, clearly breaching the development plan, while the second block would be 37m high, it was further alleged.

The board had also erred in considering Dún Laoghaire’s “unique” skyline had not been protected, it was claimed.

Ellen O'Riordan

Ellen O'Riordan

Ellen O'Riordan is High Court Reporter with The Irish Times