Residents launch legal challenge over authorization of 282 Crumlin apartments
Local residents have launched a lawsuit to revoke An Bord Pleanála’s authorization for 282 apartments on the site of the former Eason warehouse in Crumlin, south of Dublin.
The € 60 million Brickfield Drive project, comprising four apartment buildings that are four to 10 stories high, received fast-track approval in August despite strong opposition and 31 bids filed. As needed, 28 of the apartments would be sold or rented to Dublin City Council for social housing.
When the judicial review application was submitted to High Court Judge Richard Humphreys on Tuesday, he said he would formally process it next Monday.
In their proceedings, residents of Brickfield Drive Eoin Joy, Pat Lenihan, David Ryan and Gary Saunders allege that An Bord Pleanála’s decision is invalid because the development materially contravenes the open space standards set out in the Dublin City Development Plan, as well as building height guidelines in the national planning framework.
Represented by John Kenny, residents claim that the proposed development violates the local development plan’s requirement that 10% of a site be zoned for open public space. They say the site will only provide a “minimum amount” of open public space, with the “vast majority” inaccessible to the general public.
The council inspector was convinced that a financial contribution instead of the lack of public space on site would prevent the development from contravening the development plan, as there is “significant” space in adjacent Brickfield Park.
The residents claim that the decision is invalidated because the developer, Durkan (Brickfield Drive) Ltd, had not identified in its planning application this “significant contravention” to the requirements of public space. Many of the submissions made during the public consultation were based on the “understandable but incorrect assumption” that the public would have access to all of the site’s green spaces, they say. The contravention had not been the subject of public participation, so the board should have refused to consider the application rather than seek to redress the developer’s mistake, claimants argue.
The applicants claim that no assessment was conducted on the capacity of the local Luas line and bus services, which had been included in the developer’s material contravention statement as grounds for exceeding height limits under the terms of the national planning framework.
It is further alleged that the board of directors violated town planning guidelines by failing to apply the correct test for minimum daylight requirements for some of the kitchens and living areas of the apartments. .
Other grounds for challenge include allegations that the council and the state failed to properly transpose the provisions of the Habitats Directive into the planning regime. States parties have failed to demonstrate a strict protection system for bat fauna, it is claimed.
It is further alleged that the board did not identify any adequate basis as to why the development was of national and strategic importance, as required by the Housing Law of 2016.