PRESIDENTIAL candidate Sean Gallagher is involved in a stalled property development on the scenic Cooley peninsula, the Irish Independent has learned.
Mr Gallagher, along with a number of local businessmen, had planned to develop a housing estate in the beautiful seaside community of Gyles Quay near Dundalk, Co Louth.
However, seven years after purchasing the land -- and three years after receiving planning permission to build 20 houses -- no work has been carried out on the site and the only structure in place is a derelict public toilet. Mr Gallagher's spokeswoman has confirmed that the project is on hold and said "it is not known if it will go ahead in the future".
The Irish Independent has learned that Mr Gallagher and his business partner Derek Roddy paid €50,000 for a plot of land next to the beach at Gyles Quay in 2004.
According to Mr Gallagher's spokeswoman, the pair, who had established their electricity wiring company Smart Homes two years prior to the purchase, secured separate loans of €25,000 each.
The Gallagher campaign said that the land was originally bought as the location for the Smart Homes headquarters.
However, a spokeswoman said Mr Gallagher and Mr Roddy were informed by Louth County Council that the location was unsuitable and a project to develop the site as a housing estate was conceived instead.
She said the pair planned to sell the site to the adjoining landowner once planning permission had been secured with Mr Gallagher and Mr Roddy splitting any profits 50-50, but that the sale "never went ahead".
Plans to develop land in Gyles Quay have prompted numerous objections from residents in the tiny hamlet which consists of a pier, a caravan park and a row of houses.