New Clerys owners pledge to bring 'high-quality dining' to O'Connell St
The new owners of the Clerys building have pledged to address what they consider to be a dearth of high-quality restaurants on O'Connell Street and within its immediate environs.
The commitment is contained in a response from OCS Properties to a request by Dublin City Council planners for further information on its plans for the redevelopment of Clerys' former O'Connell Street department store.
In its submission of November 9 last, planning consultants for the company, which is headed up by businesswoman Deirdre Foley, referred to the current "predominance of lower grade café/restaurant and fast-food type uses" on the city's principal thoroughfare.
Consultants John Spain & Associates highlighted how 90pc of the restaurants featured in a recent 'Dine in Dublin' promotion were located on the south side.
Noting that some 1,500 restaurant seats had been added in the south of the city in recent years, they said the north of the city had in the same period been "left behind".
Following discussions and reviews with its agents, OCS Properties determined that there is a demand for restaurants of 1,000 sq ft or less in Dublin city centre.
Foley and her colleagues' culinary ambition for O'Connell Street is further evidenced with references in their submission to London's Kingly Court and to the Michelin star winning Dublin restaurant, Heron & Grey.
"Heron and Grey in Blackrock market in Dublin which is tiny, seats at a maximum 20 covers and is less than 500 sq ft," they note.