DAA challenges €5m demand for Dublin Airport plan approval

Fingal County Council seeking contribution towards provision of public infrastructure

The operator of Dublin Airport is contesting a demand by Fingal County Council that it pay €5.02 million in planning contributions.

DAA has lodged an appeal with An Bord Pleanála against a condition imposed by the council requiring the operator to pay the €5 million towards the provision of public infrastructure. It is one of 11 conditions attached to the grant of permission for DAA allowing for the extension to the north apron of Dublin Airport.

The proposed development is intended to replace airport parking for 13 aircraft. This parking at aircraft park Charlie was lost due to the works on the north runway.

In the appeal, consultants Tom Phillips & Associates contend that Fingal County Council erred in imposing the condition concerning 60,484sq m of pavement works of the apron area at the airport.

The council has made the €5 million demand after imposing a charge of €83.13 per metre for the airport apron.

In the appeal, Gavin Lawlor of Tom Phillips has asked the appeals board to remove the condition and waive any financial contributions.

Mr Lawlor told the appeals board the council incorrectly applied its own development contribution scheme when seeking the money as no commercial buildings are proposed as part of the development.

Ancillary

Mr Lawlor also argued that the €5 million contribution doesn’t apply as the extension to the north apron is ancillary to the function of the airport terminals, runways and other buildings which have already been subject to financial contributions in previous planning permissions.

The appeal notes that €11.6 million was previously paid by DAA to Fingal County Council in respect of the T2 planning permission.

Advancing the DAA case, Mr Lawlor said: “There is no increase at all proposed in the scale or nature of permitted capacity of the airport and no requirement for additional public infrastructure or facilities to serve the development.”

The planning consultant states that the development of aprons within Dublin Airport are normally considered exempt development under the planning and development regulations and hence require no financial contributions.

If the DAA was compelled to pay financial contributions of the scale demanded, he said, “it would impact the feasibility of providing key ancillary airport infrastructure”.

A decision is due on the appeal in May.