Monday 22 January 2018

Council is not investigating all of McFeely's building projects

Luke Byrne

DUBLIN City Council is not investigating all building developments undertaken by Tom McFeely and his companies despite the evacuation of the Priory Hall apartments.

And the council said yesterday that it "could not comment" on whether such an investigation would be launched in the future.

Yesterday the Irish Independent revealed how apartments similar to Priory Hall were never inspected by fire safety officers.

Instead, architects "signed off" on apartments for developers based on a visual inspection and on letters from contractors confirming the work was above board.

Over 200 residents were this week forced to evacuate Priory Hall, in Donaghmede, north Dublin, because of serious concerns about fire safety.

The complex was developed by Mr McFeely's Coalport development company.

"At the moment we're just concentrating on Priory Hall," a spokesperson for the council said. She added that no decision had been made to look at other developments associated with Mr McFeely.

Building projects by the ex-IRA prisoner's Coalport have had a history of problems.


Earlier this year the High Court threatened to evacuate Coalport's Aras Na Cluaine apartments in Clondalkin, Dublin, unless a proper fire safety regime was put in place.

It is understood Mr McFeely was involved in the construction of a number of other developments in Tipperary, Meath, Louth and Donegal.

Yesterday a spokeswoman for the residents said that while that issue had been resolved, some residents still had concerns about issues with the apartments.

"There is disagreement among residents over whether or how a complaint should be lodged," she said.

She declined to elaborate on the kinds of problems being faced by the residents.

Sonia McEntee, a solicitor who specialises in the rights of apartment owners, yesterday warned that more incidents of unsafe buildings would be uncovered.

"I am dealing with a number of apartment owners in a number of developments," Ms McEntee, of, said.

She said that along with fire regulation problems and problems such as damp, the lack of resources of developers is a serious concern.

"The big problem is where are the costs of all of this going to fall? The costs of putting these developments right.

"There is the potential here for a huge problem for the State as well as apartment owners," she added.

Irish Independent

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