Abbey subsidiary Kingscroft wins Foxrock planning appeal

Go-ahead given for 28 units at site near the Stillorgan Road

Funchal, Stillorgan Road, Dublin. Abbey’s Charles Gallagher says he is ‘feeling more cheerful’ about planning reform in the Irish market following the decision. Photograph: Google Maps

Funchal, Stillorgan Road, Dublin. Abbey’s Charles Gallagher says he is ‘feeling more cheerful’ about planning reform in the Irish market following the decision. Photograph: Google Maps

 

A subsidiary of listed homebuilder Abbey has won a planning appeal to build 28 apartments off the Stillorgan Road in Foxrock.

Planning applications for the 0.48 hectare site submitted by Kingscroft Developments had been rejected three times.

It ends a 15-year effort by various owners to build on the site, currently occupied by two derelict houses, Funchal and Garryknock. Kingscroft bought the site for €1.75 million in 2014. The last resident was Bruce St John Blake, a former past president of the Law Society, who died earlier this year.

Charles Gallagher, executive chairman of Abbey, said he was “feeling more cheerful” about planning reform in the Irish market following the An Bord Pleanála decision.

“That makes me happy this week,” he said, speaking after the company’s agm in Malahide in Dublin.

Mr Gallagher said he believed there was recognition at Government level “that we need to unpick some of the barriers” in order to spur more efficient rates of housebuilding.

“I think some progress has been made on that.”

Kingscroft Developments had previously made a planning application to build nine three-storey homes on the site. This first application was refused on the grounds that its density was not high enough.

It upped the density to 29 units on its second attempt, but this was also turned down by Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown council in late 2016, in part because access to the development would be via the “heavily trafficked Stillorgan Road (N11)”.

The third application, for a four-storey apartment building, was refused in January.

But An Bord Pleanála has found that the proposed development will “not seriously injure the residential or visual amenities of adjoining properties of the area”, and that it will be “acceptable in terms of pedestrian and traffic safety”.

The development will have six one-bedroom apartments, 14 two-bedroom apartments and eight three-bedroom apartments, and the two existing two-storey houses will be demolished to make way for it.