Dún Laoghaire Rathdown County Council has cleared the way for planning permission to be granted for 977 affordable homes at the Central Mental Hospital (CMH) in Dundrum.
This follows the council recommending to An Bord Pleanála that planning permission should be granted for the €378 million Land Development Agency (LDA) scheme.
The “fast-track” scheme — made up of 957 apartments and 20 houses — comprises nine blocks ranging in height from two to seven storeys.
As part of a 108-page chief executive’s report on the scheme lodged by the council with An Bord Pleanála, it states that the development “is an appropriate and successful approach to delivering much-needed housing at scale”.
However, the council has recommended that the number of three-bedroom units be increased in the scheme from 110 to 195, or 20 per cent of the total.
In its report the council said that the proposed development would not detract from the character of the surrounding area and would not adversely impact on the residential amenity of adjacent properties.
An Bord Pleanála has received 45 objections from locals, including from former Irish rugby international and head of operations at Leinster rugby Guy Easterby.
In a joint objection with his wife, Laurie, to the Land Development Agency (LDA) scheme, the Easterbys have stated that “we strongly object to the density, height and positioning of the proposed units that are currently on the plans”.
The couple, who live at Friarsland Road, Goatstown, have told An Bord Pleanála “we understand the need for housing/accommodation in the area but this cannot be at any cost to the local community and to the further detriment of our local infrastructure that is already struggling to cope with the demands on it”.
The Roebuck Residents’ Association and the Annaville Dundrum Road Residents’ Association have also lodged submissions concerning the scheme.
Elsewhere in their objection, the Easterbys state that “whilst acknowledging the need for housing, the number of units proposed for this site is excessive at best”.
They contend that “the attitude seems to be that ‘the land is available so let’s cram as many residences as possible in without any regard for people already living in the area’ ”.
The Easterbys state that “the local community as a whole will need to deal with the huge infrastructure issues that are definitely coming our way particularly when you consider that at last count there are 6,700 units delivered, in planning or with planning since 2018 within 600m of our community”.
They state that this “is equivalent to transplanting the population of Longford town (10,008 in 2016 census) into Dundrum without providing any of the facilities”.
The Easterbys believe there should be a reduction in the number of units “to somewhere in the region of 700 and a reduction in heights of all the apartment blocks proposed to reflect this”.
A decision is due on the application in July.