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Trinity gets nod for 358 new beds despite anger at 'drunken behaviour'

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The development will add to the accommodation at Dartry

The development will add to the accommodation at Dartry

The development will add to the accommodation at Dartry

An Bord Pleanála has given the green light for 358 student bed spaces at Trinity Hall, despite neighbours' complaints about alleged late night drunken behaviour by students.

The appeals board granted planning permission to Trinity College Dublin (TCD) for a large extension of student accommodation at Trinity Hall, Dartry, in a number of blocks rising to seven storeys.

There are already 995 bed spaces on site, and the proposal will increase the number to 1,283.

DEMAND

The college aims to start building the project next year, despite the impact of Covid-19 on the third-level sector.

"Demand for student accommodation is forecast to remain strong and this development will add to Trinity's stock of affordable student accommodation when completed," a TCD spokesperson said.

"Construction work could start in 2021, with construction completion in 2023."

The plan faced strong opposition from local residents, who allege that drunken students leaving the existing residence urinate, vomit, scream and shout.

However, board inspector Lorraine Dockery said "many of the matters raised in relation to anti-social behaviour, disruption, littering with in the public realm are a matter for An Garda Síochána, outside the remit of this planning application".

Meanwhile, a €79m development to build 360 homes on the outskirts of Blessing- ton, Co Wicklow, has been refused planning permission as it would have meant too much of a population explosion for the town.

An Bord Pleanála rejected the application by Bray-based development company, Windlynn, for a seven-year permiss- ion to build 330 houses and 30 apartments as well as a creche at Kilmalum Road under the fast-track planning application process for strategic housing developments.

The 12-hectare site lies mostly within the administrative area of Kildare County Council, about 1km from the centre of Blessington.

The board said it had taken into consideration that the Kildare County Development Plan only provided for a target of 60 new housing units in its administrative area near Blessington up to 2023, as well as the site's location on the periphery of the town.

Windlynn originally wanted to build 266 units on the site, but revised its plans as a result of a pre-application consultation with planning officials.

Outlining its ruling, An Bord Pleanála said the plans ran contrary to national and regional planning policies.