PROPERTY developers planning a major scheme in Dublin city will have to carry out an extensive archaeological study of the "historic" site.
Dublin City Council has ordered the move following concerns expressed by the Department of the Environment.
The site is located on Capel Street and surrounding roads where development company Glenternan Ltd has applied for permission to build the mixed use, ten-storey project.
It wants to construct a commercial, office and residential scheme, including a cafe and restaurant element, at 133a, 133b, 136a and 136b Capel Street, 3 to 8 Meeting House Lane and 10 to 12 Mary's Abbey.
The development site also includes 21 to 33 Arran Street East and 16, 17, 18, 19 20 and 23 Little Mary's Street.
Number 23 Little Mary's Street and the Chapter House of St Mary's Abbey at 3 Meeting House Lane are protected structures.
In a letter to the council, the Department of the Environment notes that the site has been described as "one of the most historic and archaeologically sensitive areas of the city".
It recommended that an assessment should be prepared to examine the potential impact on archaeological remains in the proposed development area.
The department said that if significant archaeological remains are found, refusal might still be recommended and/or further monitoring or excavation required.
In a discussion of the planning application by the council's central area committee, councillors expressed concern about the density of the proposal, said Labour's Emer Costello.
Cllr Costello pointed out Capel Street is now an Architectural Conservation Area (ACA)."We thought it was over development of the site. It's much too dense, even for the city centre," she added.
Glenternan has been asked by the city council to find "a suitably qualified, licensed archaeologist" to carry out the study. The applicant has several months to respond to the city council's request.