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City Council Considers Legal Challenge To Raheny Development


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Dublin City Council is getting legal advice on potentially challenging a Raheny development.

Over a thousand people have objected to the construction of more than 100 houses and 430 apartments beside St Anne's Park.

Earlier this month permission was granted by An Bord Pleanála to begin construction on the former playing pitches of St Paul's College.

 Locals taking part in yoga practice at St. Anne's Park in June 2015

The application was made under fast track planning rules which allow developers of large projects to bypass the local planning system.

A massive campaign was launched by locals to block the development bordering the park.

The I Love St Anne's group claims the unique and historic "15 acres of land ... should be preserved from encroaching development and sensitively developed for the continued enjoyment of future generations of Dubliners."

They're now trying a last ditch attempt to overturn An Bord Pleanala's decision by going through the courts.

Last night a special meeting of Dublin City Council was held to discuss the issue.

Councillor Alison Gilliland is one of the local reps who is calling for a judicial review of the planning decision, claiming a dangerous precedent has been set

"I can see down the line that this will happen again and again and again. We will lose our recreational and green space and just have houses thrown up willy-nilly."

But Green Party representative Ciaran Cuffe says councillors should be meeting to discuss the delivery of housing, not blocking it during a housing crisis:

"As we debate, there are long distance commuters driving home to their families in Courtown, in Carlow and in Cavan. They're forced to live hours away from their jobs... I would much prefer if special meetings of this council were focused on housing delivery rather than reviewing Bord Pleanála's decisions. Judicial review is expensive is time consuming."

Dublin City Council chief executive Owen Keegan has agreed to seek legal advice on potentially challenging the decision.

However the judicial review would only examine how An Bord Pleanála arrived at the decision, not the decision itself.

Objectors could be up to €250,000 out of pocket if the review doesn't go their way.

 


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