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Fingal County Council looking to build 449 new social homes

By | Industry News

Fingal County Council has lodged plans for two expansive social housing developments in North Dublin.

The county council is looking to build 449 new homes across Swords and Donabate.

The projects will cost around €99 million, with plans applied in the last month.

The largest residential development is hoped to be constructed in Swords.

At €60 million, the plan would deliver 274 homes in Mooretown – 187 houses and 87 duplex and apartment units.

Fingal Social Homes Credit: Fingal County Council

The largest residential development is hoped to be constructed in Swords — the €60 million project will build 274 homes. Credit: Credit: 3D Design Bureau

Ranging from two to five storeys, there will be 18 one-beds, 109 two-beds, 128 three-beds and 19 four-beds.

Fingal County Council also seeks the provision of Class 2 Open Space of 18,065 sq.m including riparian corridors and eight pocket parks with a total area of 2,950 sq.m.

New pedestrian and cycle connections are also planned to the west with 415 car parking spaces (357 residential and 58 short-stay) and 1,143 bicycle parking spaces (1,117 residential and 26 short-stay).

The Donabate development is smaller – costing €39 million for 175 homes.

It is proposed for a site on New Road with 123 houses and 52 apartments.

The houses will range part-one storey to two storeys in height – with 30 two-beds, 82 three-beds and 11 four-beds.

The 52 apartments will include 26 one-beds, 20 two-beds and six three-beds in a single block, from one to four storeys in height.

Fingal Social Homes. Credit: Fingal County Council

The Donabate development is smaller – costing €39 million for 175 homes. Credit: 3D Design Bureau

Private amenity spaces such as gardens, balconies and terraces will be provided for the homes.

A single-storey creche (with outdoor play area and external stores) is planned for residents.

The development will include two new multi-modal entrances as well as connections to existing or under-construction residential developments to the east and north of the site.

The project envisions 139 car parking spaces, four set-down bays as well as motorcycle and bicycle parking.

A public open space and a communal amenity space are in current plans.

Feature Image Credit: 3D Design Bureau

Narrow Water Bridge RTE Credit: An Bord Pleanala

Contract awarded for cross-border Narrow Water Bridge

By | Industry News, Upcoming Construction Projects

BAM has been awarded the contract for the cross-border Narrow Water Bridge development.

The bridge will be erected from Cornamucklagh townland, Omeath in Co Louth across the Newry River to Narrow Water townland, Warrenpoint in Co Down.

The €60 million development is expected to take three years to build and will use money from both the Shared Island Fund and €3 million announced by the Irish government in 2021.

The plan seeks to place a 280m cable-stayed bridge, anchored by two towers at either end, for both car and cycle traffic.

It would also allow for the passage of tall ships, leisure craft and other marine vessels through the Victoria Lock and the Albert Basin Newry canal.

The bridge will be asymmetric cable-stayed with rolling bascule opening span. The south span is set to measure up to approximately 138.35m and the north span is approximately 56.8m, giving a total length of approximately 195m.

The structure will be supported by asymmetric back-ward inclined towers, the higher tower will be located on the southern side of the crossing – on the centre line of the bridge.

Narrow Water Bridge RTE

BAM has been awarded the contract for the cross-border Narrow Water Bridge development. Credit: RTE

The lower twin towers will be placed on the northern side.

Another control building will be constructed on the southern approach to facilitate the bridge’s opening.

While construction was expected to commence in 2023, a contract was granted in May 2024 to BAM.

Work is set to begin in the coming weeks.

Northern Ireland’s First Minister Michelle O’Neill welcomed the news.

‘I am absolutely delighted that the contract for the Narrow Water Bridge has been awarded, with work due to begin within weeks,’ she said.

‘This will be transformative for South Down and the Cooley areas, creating a wealth of opportunities and unlocking the huge potential to create good quality jobs, boost tourism and create a stronger, all-Ireland economy.

‘An exciting time ahead for local communities in South Down and Louth!’

Feature Image Credit: An Bord Pleanala

Commencement of €49m housing development in Manorlands, Trim

By | Industry News

Construction has started on a €49 million housing development in Manorlands, Trim, Co. Meath.

On April 23 2024, work began on 45 residential dwellings on the site of a former cattle market.

Developers Keegan Land Holdings Ltd are looking to build 319 total homes–comprising 136 houses and 183 apartments.

In relation to the houses, 10 will be two-beds, 105 will be three-beds and 21 will be four-beds.

The apartments will be built across four 3-5 storey blocks with 11 studios, 30 one-beds, 71 two-beds and eight three-beds.

Another 64 duplex apartments will be built within eight 3-storey blocks, with 32 two-beds and 32 three-beds.

All units will have associated private gardens, balconies or terraces.

A creche and community centre are also planned for the development.

Housing Manorlands Trim

Construction has started on a €49 million housing development at Manorlands, Trim, Co. Meath. Credit: BBA Architecture

For residents, 563 car parking spaces will be available, with 188 bike parking spaces also.

Both vehicular and pedestrian accesses will be provided from Summerhill Road, which will be upgraded with additional cycleways and footpaths.

Developers submitted plans on July 8 in 2020 with approval granted in October of that year.

However, the development was hit with a series of delays after an environmental group challenged An Bord Pleanála’s planning permission approval.

Eco Adocacy had argued that no appropriate screening had taken place for an Appropriate Assessment, which is required by Irish and EU law.

In 2021, the case was referred to the Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU) to clarify EU legislation surrounding governing protected sites.

In June 2023, the CJEU addressed these questions and in November 2023 the high court dismissed Eco Adovacy’s case against Keegan Land Holdings Ltd.

Nearly four years on, work has now officially begun.

Feature Image Credit: BBA Architecture

Credit: Model Works

Work Begins on €177m South Docks Development

By | Industry News

Construction is underway for the €177 million South Docks development in Co Cork.

Work is now set to begin on the proposed Podium 1, Podium 2 and Podium 3 which will see the construction of 12 apartment blocks.

The development will be constructed at the Former Ford Distribution Site, fronting Centre Park Road, Marquee Road and Monahan’s Road, Cork.

Existing structures such as a single-storey building, an entrance canopy, a pump island canopy and floodlights will be demolished.

Three underground fuel tanks will also be decommissioned or removed.

 Construction is underway for the €177 million South Docks development in Co Cork. Credit: Model Works

Construction is underway for the €177 million South Docks development in Co Cork. Credit: Model Works

In its place, 1,002 apartments will be built over 12 blocks, comprising of studios, one beds, two beds and three beds.

The apartment blocks will range in height from four to 14 storeys.

On top of the apartments, plans also see the provision of five retail units, a Montessori school, a creche (in a two-storey building connected to Block 3), a medical centre, a bar, a café and a venue/performance area.

A further two community resource spaces are to be provided.

Residents will also enjoy several open space areas, including pocket parks, a linear park, residential squares and urban spaces.

One internal link road will also pass through the site, linking the Centre Park Road and the an extension of Monahan’s Road.

Two pedestrian streets will be built, also linking the Centre Park Road and the extension of Monahan’s Road.

Developers Marina Quarter Ltd. first sought approval on December 23 2020 for the mega project.

 Construction is underway for the €177 million South Docks development in Co Cork. Credit: Model Works

On top of the apartments, plans also see the provision of five retail units, a Montessori school, a creche (in a two-storey building connected to Block 3), a medical centre, a bar, a café and a venue/performance area. Credit: Model Works

An Bord Pleanála approved the fast-track of the project on April 20 2021.

The site has hosted the popular Live at the Marquee summer concert series for nearly 20 years.

Work commenced on April 19, 2024 nearly two years after approval.

Feature Image Credit: Model Works

Work begins on €32m housing development in north Dublin

By | Industry News

Construction has begun on a €32 million Strategic Housing Development (SHD) in Portmarnock, Co Dublin.

The project will deliver 172 homes in total on Station Road around the townlands of Drumnigh, Maynetown and Portmarnock

In late March, work began on the construction of one three-storey block with five single-storey units on the ground floor and five two-storey units on both the first and second floors.

In February, both a house and a single-storey outbuilding were demolished to make way for 20 new dwellings.

In December 2021, Quintain Developments Ireland Ltd put forward their application to build 150 houses and 22 apartments.

The houses are set to range from 1.5 to 3 storeys in height.

Construction has begun on a €32 million Strategic Housing Development (SHD) in Portmarnock, Co Dublin.

Construction has begun on a €32 million Strategic Housing Development (SHD) in Portmarnock, Co Dublin. Credit: BKD Architects

They will comprise of 11 three-bed 1.5 storeys, 83 three-bed two storeys, five four-bed 1.5 storeys and 51 four-bed two storeys.

Of the apartments, there are plans for 11 two-bed duplexes and 11 three-bed duplexes.

Private rear gardens will be provided for all houses with patios and balconies for the duplex apartments.

Vehicular access will be located from Station Road through two existing on St. Marnock’s Bay and a proposed new permanent road to connect with Moyne Road from the south.

The new road will extend eastwards from developers Quintain’s ‘Dún Sí at St. Marnock’s Bay’ residential development where it will turn south to connect with Moyne Road.

Construction has begun on a €32 million Strategic Housing Development (SHD) in Portmarnock, Co Dublin.

In December 2021, Quintain Developments Ireland Ltd put forward their application to build 150 houses and 22 apartments. Credit: BKD Architects

Public open space for the residents will be available at the new Skylark Park and an extension of the Railway Liner Park.

Around 345 car parking spaces and 30 bicycle parking spaces will also be supplied.

An Bord Pleanála granted permission for the development on May 9, 2022.

Feature Image Credit: BKD Architects

Plans sought for £64m commercial development in Belfast Harbour

By | Industry News

Belfast Harbour has put forward plans to to build a £64 million commercial development on the city’s docklands,

As part of a larger regeneration project for the area, the plan sees the construction of a 10-storey building primarily for offices.

Retail use is expected for the ground floor while a rooftop bar and restaurant is also proposed.

One of the entrances to the building will be from the proposed City Quays Garden and Belfast Harbour Commissioner’s office.

A separate entrance and a gallery/community space is also proposed from Donegall Quay and a pedestrian footbridge link to a multi-storey car park to the rear.

Belfast Harbour submitted plans for the project in December of last year with dates validated on February 1.

Credit: RPP Architects - Belfast

As part of a larger regeneration project for the area, the plan sees the construction of a 10-storey building primarily for offices. Credit: RPP Architects – Belfast

The development is a part of the broader £275 million City Quays project on the former docklands of Northern Ireland’s capital.

Known as City Quays 5, it’s the latest stage in the office-led scheme which the port describe as a “response to ongoing demand by inward investors and indigenous firms for new Grade A office space in Belfast”.

Developers aim for the building to be the first development in Northern Ireland to achieve a BREEAM ‘Outstanding’ rating.

Last month, permission was granted for City Quays 4 – a £46m residential development of 256 build-to-rent apartments.

It joins City Quays 1, 2 and 3 Grade A office developments, a multi-storey car park, City Quays Gardens and The AC Marriot Hotel.

It is believed that the project will generate 7,000 new jobs and support a further 3,500 construction jobs in total.

Feature Image Credit: RPP Architects – Belfast

€137m plans lodged for the delivery of 580 new homes in Douglas, Cork

By | Industry News

Plans have been lodged for the construction of 580 homes in Douglas, Co Cork.

Applicants Murnane & O’Shea (MOS) Homes Ltd. lodged a €137m plan with Cork County Council to build a new ‘village’.

Plans see the demolition of an existing dwelling house and agricultural outbuildings to make way for new houses and apartments.

In total, there will be 263 houses and 317 apartments delivered to the area.

Of the houses, there will be 88 four-bed semi-detached homes, four four-bed townhouses, 136 three-bed semi-detached homes,18 three-bed townhouses and 17 two-bed townhouses.

For the apartments, eight will be three-beds, 218 will be two-beds and 91 will be one-beds.

Douglas Cork Homes Credit: Deady Gahan Architects

Applicants Murnane & O’Shea (MOS) Homes Ltd. lodged a €137m plan with Cork County Council to build 580 new homes in Douglas, Co Cork. Credit: Deady Gahan Architects

These will be built across 27 buildings, measuring up to four storeys at the highest.

A two-storey building for a creche will be created to support the new community, providing spaces for 122 children.

A two-storey mixed-use building is also planned, with a retail unit and café at ground level and two more commercial units on the first floor.

Developers have proposed an extension to the Ballybrack Valley Pedestrian & Cycle Route as part of the application to provide connections for future residents.

In terms of access, a vehicular bridge over the Moneygurney Stream is proposed, which will lead to a new junction on the existing Carr’s Hill/Carrigaline Road (R609).

Douglas Cork Homes Credit: Deady Gahan Architects

A decision on the 10-year planning permission is due in late March. Credit: Deady Gahan Architects

Once the new M28 Cork to Ringaskiddy motorway is up and running, alternative access is suggested from the planned Carr’s Hill Junction.

This motorway will upgrade the N28 National Primary Route – connecting the port of Ringaskiddy in Cork Harbour to both the M8 Cork-Dublin motorway and the Jack Lynch Tunnel.

Bicycle parking, bin storage facilities, landscaping and servicing proposals are also included in plans.

Murnane & O’Shea put forward their application to Cork City Council for ten-year planning permission in February.

Feature Image Credit: Deady Gahan Architects

Dublin Hotel Credit: Digital Dimensions

€46m hotel in Dublin City shot down but apartments get green light

By | Industry News

Planning permission has been refused for the development of a €46 million hotel on Mount Street in Dublin city.

In December last year, Esprit Investments put forward an application for a mixed development on the site of the 19th-century buildings.

However, Dublin City Council granted partial permission and refusal.

On the residential side, the council approved the conversion of offices on 37 and 41 Mount Street into eight one-bed apartments, one three-bed apartment and one four-bed apartment.

The mews building at 50 James’s Place East is also to be converted to a residential dwelling with two bedrooms.

Dublin Hotel Credit: Digital Dimensions

In December last year, Esprit Investments put forward an application for a mixed development on the site of the 19th-century buildings. Credit: Digital Dimensions

A three-storey building is to be constructed at the rear of 50 Mount Street and 50 James’s Place East for a studio and two two-bed apartments.

A public park was also approved for the grounds of 33-34 Mount Street Upper.

However, Dublin City Council shot down the demolition of existing buildings 38 to 43 James’s Place East to make way for a 7-storey, 300-room hotel.

At 11,550sq.m, it would have been one of Dublin’s biggest hotels.

Offices on 38, 39 and 40 Mount Street Upper would also be converted for hotel use.

A glazed link and bridge from the rear of 38 and 39 Mount Street Upper was planned for ground floor level. Then at the front, there will be two platform lifts.

Dublin Hotel Credit: Digital Dimensions

Dublin City Council shot down the demolition of existing buildings 38 to 43 James’s Place East to make way for a 7-storey, 300-room hotel. Credit: Digital Dimensions

A multi-use school space and an arts/cultural space were also planned for the ground level of the hotel.

Dublin City Council refused permission for the hotel as its height and scale would “not contribute positively to the local area character and distinctiveness”.

The local authority also stated that the hotel “would have a significantly adverse and injurious impact on the special architectural character and setting of the Protected Structures”.

It is unknown if Esprit Investments will appeal this decision.

Feature Image Credit: Digital Dimensions 

Building Information Index 2023 Q1-Q4

By | Building Information Ireland, Industry News

Building Information Index 2023: Highlights and Outlook

Overall: Positive short-term outlook, but concerns exist for the long term due to a decline in new applications, particularly in the residential sector.

Key Metrics:

  • Commencements: Up 21% across all sectors.
  • Granted permissions: Steady (1% increase).
  • New applications: Down 41% (52% decrease in residential).

Sector-specific findings:

  • Residential: Positive short-term outlook due to high commencements, but negative medium to long-term due to the sharp decline in applications.
  • Commercial & Retail: Positive short-term outlook due to high commencements, but negative medium to long-term due to a decline in applications.
  • Medical: Neutral outlook due to strong current activity but a weakening pipeline with fewer applications and grants.
  • Education: Neutral outlook due to stable funding and pipeline despite a decrease in applications.
  • Agriculture: Positive outlook due to increases in all metrics.
  • Industrial: Positive outlook due to strong demand and increases in all metrics.
  • Social: Positive outlook due to strong demand and increases in applications and grants, but commencements decreased in 2023.

Additional notes:

  • The average time from application to commencement is 75 weeks across all sectors.
  • The LRD scheme appears to be functioning more efficiently than the previous SHD scheme.
  • Material costs and labour shortages are ongoing challenges for the industry.

Overall message: While current activity is strong, the decline in new applications paints a difficult picture for the future. More needs to be done to encourage and facilitate new projects, particularly in the residential sector.

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Feature Image Credit: Fingal County Council

Construction of 300 homes begins in north Dublin

By | Industry News

Work is now underway on the construction of 300 new homes in north Dublin.

Phase 1 of Fingal County Council’s Church Fields housing and community development in Mulhuddart, Dublin 15 began on February 6, 2024.

The €133 million project will deliver 300 new dwellings with the majority to be houses.

The 220 houses are to measure up to two to three storeys of varying types – 68 two-beds, 133 three-beds and 19 four-beds.

The development will provide 80 apartments over three four-storey blocks. These will include 27 one-beds, 50 two-beds and three three-beds.

The site will have 180 affordable purchase homes, 80 cost-rental homes, and 40 social homes.

The construction of a creche, a communal facility and two retail units will also take place, on top of three public open-space pocket parks.

Work on access roads, footways, site boundaries, open space, drainage, public lighting, utilities and services will commence.

The development is part of the broader Church Fields Master Plan which hopes to build 1,000 new properties within the area.

Church Fields Credit: Fingal County Council

The €133 million project will deliver 300 new dwellings with the majority to be houses. Credit: Fingal County Council

At the sod-turning event, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar welcomed the commencement.

“The Government is committed to increasing the supply of housing,” he said.

“That’s why we are continuing to push forward with our large-scale building programme to provide new social, affordable and private housing right across the country, and in doing so give people tangible choices in their living and working locations.”

Minister for Housing Darragh O’Brien hailed Mulhuddart as a “vibrant community” where these new homes will “add further to the area”.

The Mayor of Fingal, Cllr Adrian Henchy, stated that the Church Fields development represents “dedication” to providing housing solutions during a time of great demand.

“The commencement of these 300 new homes is a testament to Fingal’s hard work and its commitment to deliver sustainable, attainable, and quality housing. What’s more, it is not simply about the bricks and mortar of building homes, but about crafting a community.”

Feature Image Credit: Fingal County Council