herald

Monday 11 December 2017

Families fight cafe plan for old tax office

A GLOOMY former tax office in Dublin is to be converted into a bustling cafe with shops.

The old motor tax building on Chancery Street in Dublin 7 is to be demolished as part of the plan.

Pending approval from An Bord Pleanala, a new seven-storey office block will replace the old one which stands beside the Bridewell Courthouse.

Dublin City Council has already given approval to the proposal, though that decision was appealed.

If the final grant of permission comes through, the 12- hectare site across the road from the St Michan's House flats will be totally redeveloped.

A previous application sought approval for an 11-storey building but it was eventually turned down by the board, having got the go-ahead from City Hall.

In its decision, the appeals officials cited the impact on the setting of the iconic Four Courts building.

Commenting on the latest application, which was lodged by Linders of Smithfield Ltd, An Taisce said it considers the current plan to be excessive in height.

"It is recommended that the scale and mass of the proposed building should be kept broadly within the envelope of the existing six-storey building (known as River House) on site," it said.

However, residents of St Michans House have complained the development would "cause a loss of light" to their homes.

"It will cause excessive overlooking in to our private courtyard," the families said.

Three objectors have appealed the council's decision to An Bord Pleanala, which is due to make a decision by January 11.

comuprhy@herald.ie

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