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Drive-in cinema firm scraps its D4 planning bid

THE curtains have been drawn on a plan for a drive-in cinema in Dublin 4.

A planning application for the cinema on South Bank Road has been withdrawn but the company behind the proposal is determined to push ahead with the project at a different location in the capital.

Award-winning businesswoman Ellie Redmond, a director with Movie Junction, told the Herald that they are actively looking for new sites.

The Cork-based entrepreneur said the Ringsend project did not work out because the council put too many obstacles in their way.

"We have been liaising with the planning authorities all the time – every time we provided information they came back looking for more," she said.

At one stage, Movie Junction was asked to provide a report on how the two 18-metre high cinema screens would interfere with the flight paths of birds, Ms Redmond added.

"We provided them with a huge amount of information based on the experience we have had in Cork. No matter what we provided, it was never enough. When we went for planning in Cork, it was not straightforward, but we came to the end of the process. But with the Dublin authorities, there was never an end to it," she said.

Ms Redmond added that the repeated requests for more information made them realise it was going to be impossible to get permission in Ringsend.

But she added: "There is absolutely no way I am going to stop here. I am committed to opening in Dublin and I want to. We spent a huge amount of money on the planning phase and reports.

"We had planned to open in Dublin in 2012. If things had happened the way I wanted them to happen, we would be open six months or more."

STRATEGIC

The council had not provided a comment at the time of writing.

The application for the piece of land close to the old glass bottle site in Dublin 4 was for two outdoor screens.

Planners pointed out to Movie Junction that the site was located within a strategic development and regeneration area of the Dublin City Development Plan.

"The planning authority is concerned that any development proposed at this application site should not prejudice the comprehensive redevelopment of the lands zoned Z14 at this location," the council had said.

Movie Junction developed the country's first drive-in cinema at Fota retail park in Cork.

comurphy@herald.ie


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