Business Irish

Thursday 22 August 2019

Temple Bar local who didn't bank on nosey tourists objects to €75m plan

Temple Bar is extremely popular with overseas visitors
Temple Bar is extremely popular with overseas visitors

Gordon Deegan

A Temple Bar resident has objected to the planned €75m redevelopment of the old Central Bank building over fears of tourists taking photos of his rooftop garden.

Last month, Dublin City Council gave the green light for the redevelopment of the former old Central Bank building on Dame Street that includes a new 360-degree 300-seat rooftop restaurant and bar.

The council's planner's report said the restaurant and bar "will provide unique and unrivalled views of the city and is likely to be a major future tourist attraction for Dublin city centre".

However, one person who is unhappy with the prospective 'unrivalled views' from the roof top terrace is Temple Bar resident Vincent Howard who has appealed the council's decision to An Bord Pleanála.

Mr Howard's appeal will, even if unsuccessful, delay a final grant for the redevelopment until next February/March. In his appeal, he said if the redevelopment went ahead, "any privacy I currently enjoy is gone".

He said he is concerned about the proposed viewing terrace, stating that the whole purpose of such a terrace is to encourage people to look out over rooftops and take photographs.

The Temple Bar area and the former Central Bank building
The Temple Bar area and the former Central Bank building

"My roof garden is just 50m from the Central Bank building. I am not happy at the prospect of having people looking in and taking photos, day and night of what is currently - outside office hours - a private space."

He lives on Fownes Street Upper and said the private garden is one of the main reasons why he bought the apartment.

"I have spent a lot of time and money to make this garden a nice place to be and we use it regularly throughout the year and daily in the summer - entertaining, sunbathing, eating meals or just sitting outdoors."

Mr Howard said "my lifestyle would be adversely affected by these proposed changes".

He added: "Doubtless the resale value of my property will also fall due to this loss of privacy. There are likely to be other residents similarly affected, but I cannot speak for them - my objection on these grounds is in regards to my own unique situation, and absolutely selfish, and I acknowledge this, but I do think that people's privacy should be respected, regardless of where they live."

The plan by Hines and Peterson secured planning after the proposal received an enthusiastic response from the city council's planning department.

The planner's report stated that "the proposed rooftop extension is considered to be positive in all respects and is likely to become a local landmark and destination".

The redevelopment will host over 1,000 office workers.

Irish Independent

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