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€25,000 sale of 'Connolly's Field' a 'steal at the price'

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The sale of 'Connolly's Field' has been described as 'a steal'. Photo: Aidan Dullaghan / Newspics

The sale of 'Connolly's Field' has been described as 'a steal'. Photo: Aidan Dullaghan / Newspics

The sale of 'Connolly's Field' has been described as 'a steal'. Photo: Aidan Dullaghan / Newspics

A 'steal at the price' is how a councillor has described the €25,000 sale of land formerly known as 'Connolly's Field'.

The 0.92 hectares site at Hill Street, Dundalk (where a circus normally sets up when in town) is earmarked for apartments.

Louth County Council approved a Section 183 Notice for disposal of the freehold interest of the land to Sprucetree Park Ltd., Office Suite 1, Coe's Road Business Park, Coe's Road, Dundalk.

Cllr John Reilly questioned the value. He said it amounted to approximately two acres and seemed 'an absolute bargain' as prime agricultural land was fetching €15,000 to €20,000 an acre.

'It's a steal at the price, in my opinion.'

Director of Services Joe McGuinness said that was not a fair comparison. The council was selling the freehold interest only.

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There are no plans to remove Hill Street Bridge

There are no plans to remove Hill Street Bridge

There are no plans to remove Hill Street Bridge

He explained that initially there was a long-term lease to Mr Connolly in the 1950s for 150 years.

A report before the meeting stated it was not known from whom this land was acquired.

Mr McGuinness said there was a planning application for the site for social housing, 'a considerable development when completed'.

Cllr John Sheridan asked would this impact on Hill Street Bridge being removed long-term?

Chief Executive Joan Martin said it wouldn't interfere with any plans, but there were no plans to remove the bridge in the foreseeable future.

The removal of Hill Street Bridge was not a priority of the council and was not in its Capital Development Plan.

Ms Martin said that around 18 months ago the land in question had permission granted by An Bord Pleanála for mainly apartments.

Cllr Tomás Sharkey requested clarification that there was not a live planning application on the site yet to be finalised.

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Ms Martin and Director of Services Frank Pentony both indicated they were not aware of one. Mr Pentony said he would check.

At the same meeting, in respect of another Section 183 Notice, it was agreed to sell 45.09 square metres of land at 'Bealach an Túir, Commons Road, Dromiskin (behind the Church View estate) to Mwac Property Ltd., Old Fire Station, Cecil Street, Newry, for €1,000.

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