Pilots appeal Dublin Airport plans over Metro North link

Irish Airline Pilots Association lodges third challenge in recent months

The Irish Airline Pilots Association (Ialpa) has appealed a decision to grant planning permission for the redevelopment of the former Aer Lingus head office at Dublin Airport.

The development is part of the first phase of a planned 70-acre business park aimed at attracting international hgh-tech companies and other service industries.

Fingal County Council granted permission for the proposal in June but Ialpa has appealed the decision to An Bord Pleanála.

It is the third time in recent months that the pilots association has appealed a decision concerning Dublin Airport to the planning board.


In July, Ialpa lodged an appeal against the provision of apron bus access facilities at Terminal 2 and in August it appealed against a proposed passenger transport facility at the airport.

In both cases, the association listed failures to “adequately protect staff and passenger safety” among the reasons for their appea. The cases are due to be decided by the end of November and December respectively.

In its current appeal against the redevelopment of the former Aer Lingus head office, the pilots association said the development was premature because the Dublin Airport Local Area Plan, Dublin Airport Authority airport masterplan and a revised Fingal development plan remain outstanding.

It voiced concern over Metro North, saying any airport station should be no more than two escalator rides from the terminal. “There is actually no concrete detailed design/blueprint of the Dublin Airport stop nor overall integration with requirements contained in the 2006 Local Area Development Plan.

“So why develop Dublin Airport Central phase 1 now and, as indicated by Fingal County Council, solve outstanding issues in a revised Local Area Development Plan? This development will compromise future planning and design of the airport stop.”

Ialpa also said the plan is an “inappropriate land use zone development” and asked the planning board to consider if the high tech development is appropriate to the inner core of the airport.

In addition, the pilots say the proposed development conflicts with planning board requirements around passenger access that restricted the phase 2 development of Terminal 2.

In response, a Dublin Airport spokesman said: “We completely reject Ialpa’s false claims in relation to this development”.

The case is due to be decided by An Bord Pleanála by February 2017.

Phone calls to Ialpa went unanswered.

Dublin Airport is set to break 2015’s record of 25 million passengers this year as more than 16 million people passed through the facility in the first seven months of the year. It is planning a new €320 million runway to handle the extra traffic.

Minister for Transport Shane Ross confirmed this month that the Cabinet will commission a review of demand that will include “the possibility of a third terminal at Dublin Airport”.

Dan Griffin

Dan Griffin

Dan Griffin is an Irish Times journalist