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Arnotts' €750m plan dealt new blow

THE PLANNED €750m redevelopment of Arnotts has been delayed again -- after yet another appeal to An Bord Pleanala.

The long-awaited retail project, the Northern Quarter, will now be subject to a fresh ruling from planners following a move by heritage body An Taisce.

Arnotts originally unveiled its plans to "transform" the zone bounded by Henry Street, O'Connell Street, Abbey Street and Liffey Street in September 2006.

It wants to redevelop the area into a new shopping and entertainment district, with 47 new shops, 17 cafes, restaurants and bars, apartments and a hotel.

An Bord Pleanala granted permission for the scheme in 2008.

However, it stipulated the project could only proceed if a planned 16-storey tower in the original design was omitted.

Arnotts Properties Ltd then submitted revised plans to Dublin City Council for approval.

The council gave the go-ahead to the changes last December, subject to dozens of conditions.


However, An Taisce objected to the altered plans and has now appealed the local authority's decision.

In a letter to the council, An Taisce's Kevin Duff had pointed out the proposed modifications included the location of a primary building fronting on to Middle Abbey Street, at the corner of Upper Liffey Street.

"These modifications entail a significant change to the height and design of the proposed development in this area," Mr Duff said.

He said the changes departed "excessively" from the plans approved by An Bord Pleanala.