‘Developers reaching for the sky’

Sir, – I thank Frank McDonald for his recent article which illustrated very clearly the adverse effects of the proposed high-rise glass structure on the civic and architectural life of Limerick City ("Planning free-for-all has developers reaching for the sky", Opinion & Analysis, May 29th).

He also correctly noted that there was no provision in the plans for any form of social housing. There are, however, other important deficiencies in the plans: first, there is no indication as to how the glass structure will integrate with the Georgian houses of Patrick and Ellen Street which surround the site; second, the plans speak of creating “a world-class library” and are apparently unaware that there is already a first-class library on the site. The Limerick City library which is housed in the Granary library, a beautifully restored limestone building with fine modern additions, is only some 30 years old and is a vibrant community centre. Any plan which fails to recognise this reality, as does the present so-called Opera Centre Plan, surely calls into question the vision of those responsible for the plan. Frank McDonald is to be congratulated for shedding some light on these deficiencies. – Yours, etc,


Glenstal Abbey,


Murroe, Co Limerick.

Sir, – Your reader Mike Forde) (May 31st) paints an optimistic viewpoint of a standalone high-rise building where our tourists will enjoy a roof-top restaurant with great views of Dublin Bay, Wicklow and even across the Border. However, there is little doubt that, now that the ban is lifted, this "iconic" building will be only the forerunner of rival sky-reaching edifices. So our sightseeing tourists will have "stunning" views of a myriad of similar structures. The mind boggles!– Yours, etc,


Dublin 7.

Sir, – Maybe a useful planning condition might be that the developer actually lives in the building – but not the penthouse. – Yours, etc,