Flipping zoned land


Sir, – Your news report “Jam factory site sale leaves sour taste for council” (October 19th) shows yet again the powerlessness of local authorities to prevent developers obtaining planning permission on critical zoned land and then flipping it at enormous profit with no community benefit whatsoever.

In 1973, judge John Kenny, at the request of the then Fianna Fáil local government minister Bobby Molloy, produced a report which would have prevented this by allowing local authorities to purchase development land at existing use value plus 25 per cent.

Despite endless commitments and promises, successive governments have failed to implement this report.

Suggestions that the proposal was unconstitutional have long been shown to be groundless by various legal experts.

A recent lost opportunity was the Government’s much-hyped Housing for All document. There is still time to implement the Kenny principles.

Local authorities cannot properly run housing programmes with one hand tied behind their backs. – Yours, etc,


PhD Researcher,

Department of Social Work

and Social Policy,

Trinity College Dublin,

Dublin 2.

Sir, – Your front-page article on the jam factory planning issue sent Chivers down my spine.

The Platinum Land website informs us that, “To date we have a superb track record in gaining planning on sites and selling them at a significant increase in value”.

If Dublin City councillors need any help in the future, I am available. – Yours, etc,



Co Mayo.