Monthly Archives: March 2005

Proposed Hotel in Baldoyle Green Belt

  

The County Development Plan provides for what is called “an integrated tourism/recreational facility” in the green belt between Baldoyle and Portmarnock.  This term isn’t defined anywhere in the Plan.  However, the local area plan adopted in 200? by the Council provides for two such “facilities”, one on the Moyne Road.

 A planning application was made to Fingal for a hotel on the Moyne Road and was granted permission on the basis of this mention in the area plan.  This is entirely against the purposes of the green belt zoning in the area, and has no relationship to the park planned for the area.  It would not be accessible by public transport and would seriously damage the green belt.  My objection to the plan is attached.

                                                                                                54, Páirc Éabhóra,
                                                                                                Beann Éadair,
                                                                                                B.Á.C. 13
                                                                                                29th March 2005
Planning Department,
Fingal County Council,
County Hall,
Swords,
Co. Dublin
Re: F05A/0231  25-Feb-2005                             
Applicant: Ballymore Residential Ltd Fonthill House, Old Lucan Road, Palmerstown, Dublin 20
Location:          Mayne Townland, Baldoyle, Dublin 13
Proposed Development:            Development on a site of 3.75 hectares.  The development will consist of a hotel 4 storeys in height, plus a roof-top level restaurant with terrace; with three storeys of bedrooms containing 150 bedrooms over ground floor level bars, restaurants, meeting rooms; smokers terraces; spa, wellness and beauty facility; part ground floor mezzanine for administration offices; 2 storey sports centre with indoor swimming pool, sauna and steam room; gymnasium and fitness facility with juice bar, dance studio, creche; snooker/billiard room; 2 no. square courts, floodlit outdoor artificial surface multi-use sports area, 2,304 square metres in extent, with 10no. 12 metre high light standards fitted with downlight luminaires; Conference;Banqueting facility for approximately 350 people; car parking for 311 cars; 3 no. bus parking bays; cycle parking and service access; walled entrance forecourt area, pools, terraced gardens, landscaping, garden pavilion and boundary treatments; plant enclosures, electricity substation; basement level swimming pool plant and keg store; underground surface water attenuation tank; and all associated ancillary works.  The development proposal provides for the construction of a new access road leading north from
Mayne Road

, providing vehicular access to the western side of the proposed development; and for carriageway realignment and local improvements at the proposed junction on Mayne Road to accommodate a right turning lane.

A chairde,
I wish to object to the above application on the following grounds:
1. The application is a material contravention of the current Development Plan.
It has been suggested that it is in compliance with a Local Area Plan or a Master Plan for the area.  It has also been suggested by my area colleague, Cllr. Maher, that these plans as produced do not correctly reflect the decisions of the councillors at the time.  However, I do not have a copy of such plans.  It is my understanding that, in law, neither of these can override the statutory Development Plan. 
This is not the location indicated in the Development Plan for an”integrated tourism/recreational complex (excluding housing component), public park and retirement home”.
In any event, the development applied for is not an “integrated tourism/recreateional complex.”  The application is essentially for a standard large hotel complex on a small site.  It does not meet the criteria for an integrated tourism/recreational complex set out at 3.6.4 of the Development Plan.
It would also be a material contravention of the draft Development Plan currently at the final stage of consideration, which states “only development relating to recreational activities to be permitted in the OS zoning between Portmarnock and Baldoyle.”
2. The application is at a location not served by public transport and not adjacent to developed areas.  It will give rise to considerable avoidable traffic generation. 
This also results in it being a contravention of the Development Plan.
3. The application is large and visually obtrusive in a designated sensitive landscape.
To allow such a large development in the middle of this green belt would destroy the visual break between Baldoyle and Portmarnock.  This also results in it being a contravention of the Development Plan.
4. The application will result in further surface water discharges to the overburdened Moyne catchement.  This leads to increased flooding risk and this also results in it being a contravention of the Development Plan.
I enclose, under protest, the €20 fee.  As you will be aware this fee is illegal under EU law as it is in breach of Directive 97/11 on Environmental Impact Assessment.  Please send a receipt and also make a note of this protest so as to refund the money when the anticipated ruling of the European Court of Justice is delivered.
Is mise, le meas,
David Healy

Greens condemn cuts in bus services in Howth/Sutton area

Today, Sunday 13th March 2005, Dublin Bus placed notices in the newspapers announcing that as of today, the 31A and 31B services will be amalgamated and reduced from 24 departures a day to 8 departures on weekdays, 6 on Saturdays and a laughable 3 on Sundays.  Additionally, the 31B will terminate at Howth Summit and no longer serve Howth Dart station. While there will be an increase in the number of 31 buses on weekdays, it will not compensate for the reduction of the other services.  No part of the peninsula will have an increased service to the city and the south of the peninsula will lose 65% of its buses. 

Worse still, the total number of departures to/from Howth will be cut back massively on Saturdays and Sundays, with a reduction from a current 52 departures to Howth village on Saturday to 37 and a cut on Sundays from 36 departures to 27.
 
As if making these cuts was not bad enough, this decision has been announced in today’s Sunday newspapers and put into effect on the same day.  As late as yesterday there was no information on the 31 bus in relation to the proposed changes.  Tomorrow morning there will be people waiting at bus stops in Howth and Sutton wondering where their bus is.  This is a disgraceful way for Dublin Bus to treat their customers.

It is particularly appalling that there is to be a 30% cut in services at the weekend.  Weekend buses are already overcrowded due to the shutting down of the Dart.  On recent weekends buses for Howth have often been full even before they leave Eden Quay, and were refusing to pick up passengers at subsequent stops.

It appears that part of the reasoning behind Dublin Bus’s changes is their desire to compete with the Dart for passengers.  Recently a delegation from Dublin Bus told a Fingal County Council meeting that “We’re a bus company and it is our intention to bring people to the city by bus not by train.”  The decision to stop running the 31B service to/from Howth Dart Station is a reflection of this.  It means that the public will have to suffer a deliberately unintegrated public transport system.  Local demands for feeder bus services are being consciously resisted by Dublin Bus.

The Department of Transport has apparently approved this change with no public consultation.  We call on the Department of Transport to reverse these changes and cuts in service.

Further information: Cllr. David Healy  087 6178852, verdire@eircom.net

CIE propose palisade fence at Bayside Station

I have written to the planning Department opposing CIE’s proposal for a
palisade fence around the new station at Bayside.  I also raised
it at the Area Committee meeting. The letter is attached.

  
                                                               
54, Páirc Éabhóra,
                                                               
Beann Éadair,
                                                               
Co. Bh.Á.C
                                                               
4th March 2005
Mr. David O’Connor,
Director of Services,
Planning Department
Fingal County Council

Re: F03A/0623 Bayside Dart Station compliance submission
Mr. O’Connor, a chara,
I
refer to the above permission and the compliance submission made in
relation to it.  I would like to make the following points,
starting with the most significant problem with the submission:
The
proposal to surround the car park and landscaped area with a palisade
fence is entirely unacceptable and entirely inconsistent with the open
character of Bayside, the treatment of other parking in the area, and
residential amenity.  There should be no fence around this
area.  This proposed palisade fencing would be a significant
addition to the permission originally applied for and including it in
the current permission would be ultra vires the Council. 
Part of the area in question is designated in the planning permission
for Sutton Park as “private open space” (see Folio number
57308f). 
I note that cycle parking is
proposed.  In line with best practice as this is long-term parking
for commuters and other passengers, it should be covered from the
rain.  Additionally, and this is something I was unable to check
as the full file was not available yesterday, it should be in a
location where it is visible to the staff working in the station.
In
relation to the underpass, I note IÉ accepts that it is a public right
of way.  It may be appropriate to address some of the issues
relating to it in tandem with the development of community facilities
on the adjacent Brickfields site, which is the subject of discussion
between the Community Department and local organisations.
Is mise, le meas,
David Healy
Green Councillor for Howth Ward