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McDonald's is halted in plan to open 24 hrs

McDonald's has been barred from opening a Dublin store 24 hours a day because it would "injure" the area.

Dublin City Council has rejected an application from the international franchise to extend the opening hours at its outlet in the Donaghmede Shopping Centre.

Locals had lodged strong objections to a plan that would have allowed the restaurant to open beyond 11.30 at night, arguing that it would result in anti-social behaviour, noise pollution and litter problems. The decision could have implications for similar outlets across the city.

In its application, McDonald's said it wanted to stay open all night "due to increased competition in the area".

The company argued that longer hours would "help maintain and hopefully increase sales and thereby keep the existing workforce with a likely increase". However, furious neighbours lodged a number of complaints against the plan and have been backed up by local politicians.

The Donaghmede Estate Resident Association (DERA) made a submission in which it noted that McDonald's application ran "contrary to the wishes of the vast number of residents".

DERA wrote: "There is no such need for the proposed 24-hour opening in our residential area, residents rightly feel that such overnight opening would attract an undesirable element to our estate with the potential for anti-social behaviour."

In its decision, Dublin City Council accepted that the proposed development of 24-hour opening "would have potential to result in increased late-night noise and disturbance such as to seriously injure the residential amenities of property in the vicinity".

McDonald's has until the middle of next month to appeal the decision.