Friday, July 30, 2010

Making a Strong Vision Statement for Dublin City - The Dublin City Development Plan 2011 - 2018

The Dublin City Development Plan (2011-2017), currently being finalised by the City Council, sets out strategies to protect and enhance sustainable residential communities, to foster and enhance the city’s culture and heritage, to develop Dublin as a clean, green connected City, to revive the City’s economy in order to create conditions to generate new jobs and protect existing employment and to establish Dublin City as the premier retail venue in the country.

Dublin City Council met on 26, 27 and 28 July to consider the submissions from the public and the City Manager’s recommendations. The Labour Group on Dublin City Council took on board the many public submissions and proposed progressive motions and amendments to the Draft Plan. Issues such as height, density and plot ratio, the creation of Statutory Local Area Plans, the protection of the City’s heritage, green spaces and environment, zoning, the restriction of certain uses within residential areas, and the development of a vibrant Core City Centre, were at the heart of Labour Party amendments to the City Manager’s proposals.

The amendments adopted by the City Council at the meetings in July will be on public display until the 15th of September in the Civic Offices, Dublin City Library and on the City Council website Submissions will be invited from
the public. The submissions and City Manager’s recommendations will be considered at a final meeting at the end of October before the plan comes into effect in January 2011. Vigilance will be required to ensure that there is no attempt to row back on the hard-won community gains.


Off-licenses: A very important Labour Party motion was adopted to prohibit the further expansion of off licenses or part off-licenses except in areas where a compelling case can be made. Any application for an off-license must include a map of all the off-licenses located within a 1km radius of proposed development.

Institutional Lands Zoned Z15: The Labour motion to delete residential development on institutional lands as a use which could be “open for consideration” was adopted. Moreover, any future development of institutional lands must “have regard to the prevailing height” in the neighbourhood.

Vacant Lands: Labour Party motions and the recommendations of Cllr Emer Costello’s Lord Mayor’s Commission on Employment have led to the adoption of a new policy in relation to temporary use of vacant properties/sites for creative/cultural/social entrepreneurs/ community sectors.

Homeless & Social Services: These will require detailed planning applications to avoid a proliferation / concentration of institutional services in residential areas.

Public Realm/Advertising: The City Manager has agreed to put the public realm advertising strategy out to public consultation (e.g. JC Decaux street advertising).

Labour proposals for statutory Local Area Plans for the following areas were agreed:
-Manor Street/Stoneybatter/Smithfield Area
-East Wall
-Ballybough/Croke Park Area
-Pelletstown which will also include the Navan Road area


Dominican Convent Lands, Cabra:
The Labour motion rejecting the City Manager’s proposal to rezone part of the lands bordering Riverston Abbey from Z15 (institutional) to Z1 (residential) was adopted thus reinstating the Z15 zoning in accordance with the wishes of the residents.

Luas BXD line Royal Canal/ Broombridge:
Our proposal for a new policy was adopted: “That the proposed Luas BXD line in the vicinity of the Royal Canal and Broombridge will have full regard to the heritage and amenity value of the area and this should be reflected in any Environmental Statement”

Hendron’s Site, Broadstone:
The Labour proposed a motion to reject the City Manager’s proposal to rezone to Z10A (Inner Suburban) and the Z3 (neighbourhood use) zoning was adopted in accordance with the wishes of the residents.

Prussia Street:
The City Manager’s recommendation to rezone land on Prussia Street from Z6 (enterprise and employment) to Z4 (District Centre) was rejected and Z6 zoning retained pending adoption of Local Area Plan on foot of a Labour proposal.

Mount Bernard Park:
The lands north-west of Mount Bernard Park, Phibsborough, between the park and the Royal Canal were rezoned from Z1 {residential} to Z9 {amenity}. The extension of the park and the provision of a playground in the park were included on the insistence of Labour Councillors.

Mountjoy Square:
As a result of a Labour motion, the City Manager agreed to commence statutory assessment to designate Mountjoy Square an Architectural Conservation Area without delay

Lands at Alfie Byrne Road:
The Labour motion to reject the manager’s proposal to rezone these lands and the Z9 (amenity) zoning has been retained.

Castleforbes Road:
The Labour motion to commence procedure to remove Castleforbes Road from the Record of Protected Structures to allow resurfacing take place there, was agreed.

The Labour Group ensured the curtailment of the City Manager’s proposals for high rise throughout the City. Under the current City Development Plan(2005-2011) there is no restriction on the permitted height of buildings in any part of the City. The new plan (2011 – 2017) sets out maximum limits for height across the City. Moreover, there is now a strict requirement that all proposed new buildings, two storeys or more, above the prevailing height in the area must be accompanied by a detailed Design Statement to justify the new height proposed. The draft height policies for the City are now as follows:

Low Rise:
Inner City Area
6 storey residential (19m)
7 storey office (29m)

Rail Hubs
i.e. within ½ kilometre(or 500 metres)of mainline train & Dart stations (but not including Luas stops)
6 storey residential (19m)
6 storey office (25m)

Outer City
4 storey residential (13m)
4 storey office (17 m)

Mid-rise & High Rise
A number of areas have been designated for mid-rise and high rise buildings. Labour Councillors insisted that in these cases a statutory Local Area Plan (LAP) must be in place before any high buildings can be granted permission and the areas treated as low rise areas pending the adoption of a LAP.

Areas designated as mid-rise (up to 16 residential and 12 Office – 50M max) include
Phibsborough, the Local Area Plan has been adopted and high building can only be located in areas designated for such under the LAP, e.g. Mater Hospital site.

Grangegorman, which is to be the subject of a special statutory Strategic Development Zone (SDZ) for the new unified campus for the Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT) and HSE Facility.

Pelletstown, which will be treated as a low rise area pending the adoption of a Local Area Plan.

Areas designated as High Rise – (Over 16 Storeys 50m) include
Docklands- the City Development Plan must be consistent with the Dublin Docklands. Development Authority’s Masterplan and vice versa.

Connolly Station – a new Local Area Plan will be drafted for the area.