Saturday 25 January 2020

RTE plans to move creche into historic building in Montrose

The RTE building in Montrose
The RTE building in Montrose
Melanie Finn

Melanie Finn

Some of our top celebrities’ children are in line for a new daycare facility after RTE applied to move its creche into a historic building.

The national broadcaster has applied to Dublin City Council (DCC) to redevelop Montrose House, a protected structure on the sprawling grounds of RTE’s Donnybrook base.

It is hoping to re-house the RTE creche, which caters for children from three months to five years of age, and has been in operation since September 2008.

The purpose-built structure, which cost €1.5m to complete, caters for up to 80 children.

RTE bosses want to change the use of Montrose House, which covers an area of 674 square metres, from an office and administration area to a creche.


They are also hoping to add a single-storey extension of 77 square metres which will provide a covered outdoor area for its young clients.

However, RTE has come up against a stumbling block in its application to the council for planning permission.

The original application, which was submitted at the start of this month, has been declared  invalid as the proposed development involves works to a protected structure.

The council came back to RTE on April 13 and said this distinction must be stated in the new notices, according to the Dublin City Development Plan 2011-2017.

RTE will now have to re-submit these, setting the project back.

Montrose House once belonged to the family of Annie Jameson of the whiskey dynasty, whose son, Guglielmo Marconi, invented the wireless.

It is understood the decision to re-house the RTE creche, which is partially subsidised, may be part of RTE’s plans to consider selling off part of its land in order to inject some cash into the coffers.

When asked about its

long-term plans, a spokesman said no decision has been made yet on whether to sell off tranches of the grounds.


“RTE continues to give serious consideration to the best commercial options for the disposal and development on land in Donnybrook,” the spokesman said.

“No final decision has been made. However, RTE intends to remain on its current campus. Options involve under-utilised portions of its Donnybrook site.

“Like many organisations, recent years have been characterised by under-investment in capital infrastructure at RTE.

“Decisions regarding the disposal of any land assets are in the context of raising funds for longer-term capital and digital investment, essential if RTE is to continue to meet the changing needs of audiences.”

RTE said no final costing for the creche relocation was available and the existing arrangements for parents using the service will continue for the new facility.

RTE will now re-submit an amended application to Dublin City Council.


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