Policy supports high-rise tower at Arnotts car park, property firm says

Fitzwilliam Real Estate plans 12-storey build-to-rent scheme in Dublin city centre

The proposed height of Fitzwilliam Real Estate's planned 12-storey, 159-unit build-to-rent apartment scheme on the site of the Arnotts car park in Dublin city centre is fully supported by national planning policy, the company has argued.

That is according to planning consultants Tom Phillips & Associates which has told Dublin City Council on behalf of the applicant that the density of the scheme is also supported by national guidelines that promote increased residential density in central urban areas. Fitzwilliam is backed by developer Noel Smyth.

The report acknowledges that the 38-metre height of the scheme “is in excess of the Dublin City Council standard of 24m for residential development and 28m for commercial developments”.

However, the report by the consultants states that the height of the apartment block was lower than the permitted 44-metre-high Jervis Street Centre scheme to the west of the proposed development site.


The developers have confirmed that they will sell 16 of the 159 units to Dublin City Council for social housing in order to comply with their Part V social housing obligations.


The 159 units are made up of 60 studios, 85 one-bedroom apartments and 14 two-bedroom units. It involves the construction of a 12 storey over-basement element fronting William’s Lane; a five-storey element over Arnotts multi-storey car park and a two-storey element over the Arnotts store. The top three floors of the car park would be removed.

The scheme is to include a dog washing room, a gym, a multimedia room, communal lounge and a co-working space. An exercise yard and a basketball hoop are to be included on the seventh floor.

The Tom Phillips planning report states that the scheme “will contribute to the area’s vitality and vibrancy” and was in line with national policy.

The scheme is the first major residential application made directly to the council since the Government decision to phase out the strategic housing development system for large-scale housing projects.

Four years ago, Mr Smyth secured permission for a nine-storey hotel on the site, but is now seeking permission for the build-to-rent apartment scheme.

A decision is due on the application in March.

Gordon Deegan

Gordon Deegan

Gordon Deegan is a contributor to The Irish Times