Saturday 24 August 2019

Tech trouble: City residents object to Google plan changes

Bolands Quay, Dublin. Photo: Steve Humphreys
Bolands Quay, Dublin. Photo: Steve Humphreys
Landmark project: An artist’s impression of the Google project

Gordon Deegan

A group of residents in Dublin are opposing plans by Google to add shop, restaurant and café units to the ground floors of the permitted towers at the internet giant's €300m plans for Boland's Quay.

Work is continuing on the project that comprises three new landmark buildings; one rising to 53 metres, another to 49 metres, and a third to 47.8 metres.

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Earlier this year, Google Ireland lodged plans for two link bridges to towers one and two which would connect levels four and 11 of the permitted buildings.

Google has also applied to change the use of the ground floors of the towers from office use to shop, restaurant and café units.

Six households on Barrow Street have lodged a group objection against the plan.

The consultants for the residents, Marston Planning Consultancy, contend that if the ground floors can be used for shops, cafés and restaurants, the impact "will be negative and profound" for the residents.

They added that the impact on the residents' residential amenity "will be unacceptable". The objection also contended that the planned bridges between two tower blocks "will further reduce natural sunlight" to the residents' properties.

Dublin City Council has put the plan on hold seeking additional information on technical issues - however the residents' arguments appear to have little sway with the planners.

The planning report said the change of use at ground floor "will help to animate the street and allow for the development of this area of the city. The proposed changes are therefore welcome."

The council said the link bridges are "acceptable and will improve the functionality of the two buildings".

Irish Independent

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