Car wash dad 'devastated' at planning row
A Dublin car wash owner is "devastated" as a planning row threatens to scupper his new business.
Michael Hanley (25) from Cabra said that he signed a five-year lease with a private company for the use of the historic Aldborough House grounds on Dublin's Portland Row.
Since the end of July, he has been operating his car wash business from its grounds, and has built up a client base.
He spent €10,000 savings on getting the grounds of the building cleaned up and getting the rubbish taken away, and put security on it.
"I bought all the equipment. I started washing the cars, which led to a huge success," he said.
He said that out of the blue last Friday, he was informed on behalf of the council's planning enforcement section that he needed planning permission for the car wash business.
Michael said that he twice dropped in planning applications in July and August, only to be told subsequently that there was no record of them being received.
And he said he had held a pre-plannning meeting with a manager in recent weeks.
Dad-of-three Michael said he has submitted the paperwork again this week to facilitate the change of use from a private to commercial use.
But on Tuesday, he was informed that he must leave, he said.
Michael remained working at his business yesterday afternoon and told the Herald that he is continuing to hope for the best.
"I have had a lot of support from the local community," he said.
A spokesperson for Dublin City Council said that: "The Planning Department has initiated Enforcement action under Section 154 of the Planning and Development Act 2000-2013 in respect of unauthorised signage, unauthorised uses and associated structures at Aldborough House, Portland Row, Dublin 1."
Earlier this week, the Council had confirmed to the Herald that it received a number of complaints in August about the unauthorised use of the lands concerned, and said these were being investigated."