New homes: Major Dún Laoghaire scheme

Terraced houses on former golf course for €715,000-€800,000

 

The first 25 houses in a large new housing development on the site of the old Dún Laoghaire golf club go on sale this weekend. The three-storey four/five- and five-bedroom terraced homes in Roseland, Cualanor, Glenageary Road Upper, costing €715,000 and €800,000, have been built already and buyers should be able to move into them by July or August.

The most striking thing about these houses, built by developer Cosgrave, is their high level of energy efficiency and their location: there is a landscaped 6½-acre park with a children’s playground next to the houses, and pedestrian access to Tivoli Road, a short walk from Dún Laoghaire town centre.

There is an annual management fee of €698 for the homes, which includes bin charges. The scheme is for sale through agents Hooke & MacDonald.

Each house comes with parking for two cars and a charging point for an electric car, solar panels, a heat recovery ventilation (HRV) system that supplies fresh air and saves energy, and USB charging points in main living areas. Other standard features include tiled floors in halls and kitchen/ livingrooms, utility rooms, quartz countertops and island units in kitchens, and walk-in dressingrooms in main bedrooms.

Cualanor – a name taken from an ancient era when this part of south Dublin was apparently known as Cualan – is the second phase of the development. Cosgrave bought the 78-acre site in 2002, giving Dún Laoghaire golf club members €20 million in cash and a new 300-acre golf club and clubhouse in Co Wicklow in exchange.

Honeypark

The golf club site was divided by Glenageary Road Upper, and Cosgrave has already built 400 homes at Honeypark, fronted by Park Pointe shopping centre, on 47 acres on the southern side of the site. A total of 1,800 homes, a mix of apartments and houses, are to be built on the whole site, 900 units in Honeypark and 900 on 31 acres in Cualanor.

The 25 houses going on sale today in Roseland are the first of 90 being built. Another 25 or so will go on sale in September. Approximately 100 one- and two-bedroom social housing apartments should be built by early 2017, and 100 one-, two- and three-bedroom private apartments should go on sale later next year.

The two house types on view today are similar, with the smaller (the Alder) costing €715,000, the larger (the Birch) €800,000. The smaller 205sq m (2,206sq ft) four/five-bedroom house is described as such because a room on the top floor is fitted out as a study but could be a bedroom. The five-bedroom 227.5sq m (2,448sq ft) house has a bigger livingroom on the ground floor and slightly bigger rooms all round.

Flexible layout

Common to both is a flexible layout: the ground floor livingrooms could be used as a playroom, for example, with a bigger “entertainment room” on the first floor used as a livingroom. The open-plan kitchen/family rooms at the back of the houses open through double doors onto patios and modest back lawns with high walls and rear access. Garden sheds are fitted with light and sockets and there’s a neat “services enclosure” in the garden housing the water tank and boiler.

The bedrooms are all decent-sized doubles; the larger main bedrooms have en suites with bath and shower, and walk-in dressingrooms. There are smart tiled bathrooms on all floors.

Michael Cosgrave – who along with his brothers Peter and Joe set up their company in 1979 – explains how the Cualanor homes are designed to minimise energy use, reduce energy waste and recycle energy that is produced. Houses are highly insulated (and therefore well soundproofed) and a heat recovery ventilation (HRV) system uses 90 per cent of energy produced in the home, whether from photovoltaic (PV) solar panels on roofs, by lights, appliances or occupants. A Warik Energy Miser diverts any surplus power into the house. The system provides a constant flow of fresh air in the house; air can be cooled in warm weather. Cosgrave says that most people living in Honeypark turn on their heat for just an hour a day, and he encourages prospective buyers to talk to Honeypark homeowners to ask about their reduced energy bills. The houses have no fireplaces, unless buyers want a decorative one installed.

Original trees

The 6.5-acre park designed by landscape architects Mitchell & Associates is – like the one at Honeypark across the road – a very far cry from the green space provided in older suburban developments. Original trees in a wooded area on one side have been preserved; tulips and daffodils provide colour. The wood opens onto a large grassy area; seating is built into higher ground overlooking a space that could be used for performances.

Closer to the Roseland houses, there’s a wide plaza and an enclosed children’s playground. Cosgrave will maintain the park here and in Honeypark until all the homes have been built, when they will be taken charge of by Dún Laoghaire Rathdown County Council and become public parks.

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