Hines secures planning permission for €135m Liffey Valley extension

Go-ahead given despite opposition from operators of The Square in Tallaght

The western end of Liffey Valley shopping centre.

The western end of Liffey Valley shopping centre.

 

Property group Hines has secured planning permission for a €135 million major extension to the Liffey Valley shopping centre.

South Dublin County Council has granted permission for the extension in spite of opposition to the plan from the operator of a rival shopping centre, The Square in Tallaght.

According to Hines, the new plan is to provide a contemporary mixed leisure, entertainment and retail extension that is to be centred around a new landmark feature, a large public plaza with an east-west street at the centre.

The proposed extension is to be anchored by two large retail units on either side of the plaza.

Application

A retail impact assessment lodged with the planning application states that the planned extension will deliver an additional €128.65 million in retail revenues for Liffey Valley centre by 2025.

The assessment said that by 2025, the Liffey Valley shopping centre will produce annual retail revenues of €462.56 million compared to a pre-Covid 19 estimate for 2020 of €317.7 million.

As a condition of the permission Hines will pay €4.2 million for public insfrastructue in the area. Hines manages the centre for its German pension fund owner, Bayerische Versorgungskammer,  which purchased the centre and adjacent land in 2016 for more than €630 million.

Documentation lodged with the planning application said that the centre owners “have invested significantly to date to deliver improvements to the customer experience, service facilities and the public realm”.

“This investment of €26 million to date is but the start with an additional €38 million designated for extensions to the existing centre and car park upgrades and the owners through the proposed development will invest approximately €135m in the centre”.

Planning consultants Avison Young said that the application “will not only deliver significant improvements to the offer and operation of the Liffey Valley centre, it will also completely alter the role of the centre by providing a focal point for the community and greatly enhance the visitor experience”.

The plan comprises of a two-storey commercial extension comprising of over 46,783 sq metres.

An Bord Pleanála rejected plans for a previous major extension in February 2017 due mainly to the impact the proposal would have on the local road network.

Impact

The council granted planning in spite of the operators of The Square claiming that the extension to the Liffey Valley Centre in Dublin “is unwarranted and unnecessary”.

The Square Management Ltd told South Dublin Co Council that the proposed increase in the Liffey Valley shopping centre “will have a major impact on the Square Shopping Centre”.

The company told the council that “the proposed extension of Liffey Valley Shopping Centre will not only entice customers away from the Square town centre, it will also have a cannibalisation effect on retailers currently trading within the Square, which will have a detrimental economic effect on retailers and their staff and consequently the vitality of the town centre in Tallaght”.

The Moriarty retail and hotel group also told the Council that it had “serious concerns” concerning aspects of the Hines proposal.

The group operates three Supervalus at Balbriggan, Skerries and Palmerstown along with two hotels.