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Developer asked to replace 4 protected trees it had chopped

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Councillor Deirdre Conroy where the trees were chopped down in Rathgar

Councillor Deirdre Conroy where the trees were chopped down in Rathgar

Councillor Deirdre Conroy where the trees were chopped down in Rathgar

A developer which chopped down protected trees at a Rathgar property has been rapped on the knuckles by Dublin City Council (DCC) and asked to replace them with ones of a similar size.

Neighbours called gardai when they noticed tree surgeons at the property on Highfield Road on the Saturday of the June bank holiday weekend.

More tree surgeons arrived three days later at 7am and locals had to intervene again.

They accused the developer of using "underhand tactics".

Number 37a was recently demolished, with two six-bedroom semis built in its place, but the planning file says permission was granted on condition that certain mature trees be protected during construction.

DCC has since met with the developer and an inspection of the site has been carried out.

Its Planning Enforcement and Parks sections have now written to the developer requiring that all works cease until certain information is supplied to the council.

Removed

The information DCC requires includes an arboriculture assessment of the three remaining trees; details of the date that the four trees that were to be retained on site were removed, together with the reasons why they were removed; and a detailed planting plan for replacing them on a like-for-like basis.

The property has been developed by a company called Seabren Developments with directors Michael and Tina Moran. The Moran family are also behind the Red Cow Hotel development.

The original house at 37a was an unusual one which was originally built in the 1980s as an extension to Victorian number 37 when it was owned by restaurateur Oliver Caffrey.

It was designed with a swimming pool on the ground floor and ballroom on the top floor, which was accessed by a lift.

Local councillor Deirdre Conroy slammed the decision by the developer to cut down the four trees. "It was a dismissive approach to the residents and very uncaring," she said.

Michael Moran said Seabren had now provided DCC with a comprehensive response to its information request.