Wednesday 21 February 2018

Iconic Clerys' to be restored to its former grandeur - complete with new 'rooftop destination'

An artist's impression of the plans lodged to develop the department store and Earl Place
An artist's impression of the plans lodged to develop the department store and Earl Place
The plans include a precinct for retail, offices and restaurants
An artist's impression of the new-look Clerys

Ronald Quinlan and Martin Grant

The iconic Clerys department store could be transformed into a boutique hotel, bars, restaurants, offices and retail space.

The new owners of the O'Connell Street premises have applied to Dublin City Council for planning permission to renovate the building.

Former Clerys workers have been angered by the move after they were made unemployed without notice.

The new owner of Clerys - OCS Properties - plan on restoring the original feature stairs to provide access to the former Clerys Tea Rooms, which were frequented for decades by the store's customers.

Meanwhile, a new "rooftop destination" full of bars, restaurants and entertainment spaces will be the new main attraction if planning is granted.

Developers say the rooftop will offer the public a unique vantage point from which to enjoy panoramic views of the city.

The lower floors of the building will be used for retail, while the upper office floors will be opened up for letting to local and international companies.

OCS Properties director Deirdre Foley described it as "the start of a new chapter" for the building.

"O'Connell Street is the historical heart of our capital and deserves an iconic redevelopment like this," Ms Foley said.

"Our vision for this iconic building at the centre of O'Connell Street is a catalyst to restore the street as our most vibrant shopping and social hub for visitors and locals to enjoy and be proud of," she added.

Ex-Clerys workers were last night angered by the proposals.

Maurice Bracken told the Herald he hopes the council reject the application.

"I'm shocked, it will be very disappointing if this is allowed to go ahead," said Mr Bracken.

"We don't need another hotel on Dublin's main street. I'd be very wary of this."

Former worker Caroline Murphy also said she wasn't happy with the planning application.


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