An Taisce to appeal ruling on casino


AN TAISCE is appealing against the planning approval granted last month for a proposed €460 million casino, sports and leisure venue in Co Tipperary.

According to An Taisce, the development planned by businessman Richard Quirke would contravene national, regional and local authority development plan policies on sustainable development.

North Tipperary County Council have granted planning permission to Mr Quirke for the large-scale development – named the Tipperary Venue – on a 900-acre site at Two-Mile-Borris outside Thurles.

A former garda, Mr Quirke is the owner of the Dr Quirkey’s Goodtime Emporium amusement and gaming arcade on Dublin’s O’Connell Street and has the support of independent TD for North Tipperary, Michael Lowry.

They say the development will provide 2,000 jobs when complete and 1,000 jobs during construction.

The businessman wants to build a 500-bedroom hotel, 15,000-seat entertainment venue, international equestrian centre, casino, new turf and all-weather horseracing track, greyhound racing circuit and a replica of the White House as a tribute to the Kilkenny-born architect of the iconic Washington building, James Hoban.

In their 17-page appeal, An Taisce point out that there is no legislation allowing for a casino in this country and say that Mr Quirke’s application is based on “an unsustainable development model of dependence on air travel from all over the world and car dependence for visitors from within Ireland”.

They say that a number of the project’s features, particularly the entertainment venue, would be better suited to one of Munster’s three gateway cities – Cork, Limerick and Waterford.

An Taisce also say the proposal is in contravention of the National Spatial Strategy, the Mid-West Regional Planning Guidelines, the county development plan, the transport guidelines and fails to address Failte Ireland’s environmental action plan for tourism.